U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATF) has sent a cease and desist letter to Q, LLC, over their Honey Badger pistol.
The Honey Badger is an AR15 pistol with a pistol brace licensed and produced by SB Tactical. In the letter, the ATF considers the Honey Badger as a short-barreled rifle (SBR). SBRs are controlled under the National Firearms Act and require a $200 tax stamp and added paperwork. Owning an unregistered SBR is considered a felony with a lengthy prison term.
The notion of the ATF reclassifying the Honey Badger an SBR has sent shockwaves through the gun community. The questioning of the legality of pistol braces has rocked firearms news sites. People begin to worry if a Bump Stock Ban 2.0 was going to happen all over again.
The ATF reclassified bump stocks as machine guns after a shooting in Las Vegas. After years of being on the market and approval by the ATF, the agency told people that they had to turn in their bump stocks or destroy them. The ATF put several companies out of business with their arbitrary ruling.
This case is different. Nine months ago, The Depart of Justice (DOJ) instructed the ATF’s industry side not to move on braces until all parties could agree on standards. Unlike bump stocks, multiple companies have sold millions of braces to Americans, and the industry was working with the ATF to develop the new regulations.
Since the ATF could not use their industry side to go after Q because of DOJ limitations, the agency decided to use its criminal arm to send a Cease & Desist Letter and accuse the company of selling unregistered SBRs. Sources inside the ATF tell AmmoLand that the investigation and subsequent letter was a result of how Q marketed the Honey Badger. After trying to resolve the issue with ATF, Q went public with a letter to their customers advising them of the ongoing situation and the legal jeopardy.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation, a national trade association for the firearms industry, has reached out to the Federal government to get clarification on the letter.
“NSSF has reached out to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), Members of Congress and The White House to seek clarity on this most recent cease and desist notification,” an NSSF spokesperson told AmmoLand.
“When a similar letter was issued to another manufacturer in June, NSSF took similar action, and the ATF reassured the firearm industry that pistol braces were not being reviewed for reclassification and are legal for use on AR pistols.”
Is that so? Deep State Hate
ATF Acting Director Regina Lombardo, who is not President Trump's pick to lead the ATF, is a career bureaucrat. AmmoLand New’s sources inside the agency say she is not loyal to the president. Several independent sources have stated that Lombardo has a narrower definition of the Second Amendment than President Trump & the rest of America.
Sources also tell AmmoLand News that Associate Deputy Director Marvin Richardson, another career bureaucrat, has an ax-to-grind against pistol braces and belives they violate the NFA but doesn’t think that they have the political capital to make a move against the millions of accessories under a Trump presidency. Those inside ATF with knowledge of the situation told AmmoLand News that higher-ups at the ATF believe that they will have the political capital and cover to go after braces under an anti-gun Biden administration.
BATF Headquarters advised all their agents not to answer questions on braces. This ban on answering questions does not just apply to the media. Agents cannot answer questions about braces’ legality, even if asked by firearms manufactures and gun dealers who sell the braces.
The same unnamed sources feel that the ATF agency heads are preparing for a Biden victory. They have inferred from conversations with ATF leaders that they are actively working to defeat Trump, and this move was to designed to disenfranchise gun owners just ahead of the election. Although the heads did not say this directly, three independent sources who work closely with the agency heads have verified this interference to be the unspoken truth within the highest halls of the ATF.
SB Tactical tells AmmoLand News that they are not worried about these cease and desist letters leading to a ban on braces.
They said that the company works within all ATF regulations, and they have engaged the DoJ and ATF about rules dealing with pistol braces. They feel confident that the ATF will not take action against pistol braces directly before the election. But, a November election-win for Joe Biden and Democrats, and you can expect 2021 to be a whole new fight to keep another piece of your Second Amendment rights.
The ATF did not respond to AmmoLand’s request for comment.
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.