Joe Biden’s campaign website says that “federal law does more to protect ducks than children.” As ridiculous as the statement is on its face, Biden actually used it as an argument during his campaign to push for a ban on the sale and manufacture of assault weapons and “high-capacity magazines.”

Biden’s plan is a two-part approach: he plans on pushing an even more aggressive version of the 1994 assault weapons ban while also abusing his power as President to ban the importation of assault weapons by fiat. According to him, the previous assault weapons ban worked (it did not - you can click here to see the FBI’s statistics) and the new ban will be “designed to prevent manufacturers from circumventing the law by making minor changes that don’t limit the weapon’s lethality.” In other words, Biden intends to abandon the typical features-based test for whether a weapon qualifies as an assault weapon, the practical effect being a ban on nearly all modern semi-automatic rifles and handguns. The only foreseeable basis other than banning firearms on the basis of their function is a ban based on their magazine capacity, so everything from a Browning Hi-Power to an AK-47 could be subject to the ban. 

Aside from being entirely ineffective at reducing the homicide rate, Joe’s plan is unconstitutional because it bans firearms and necessary components that are in common use. Even if he believes that the Court “got it wrong” in District of Columbia v. Heller, Biden's position is irrelevant because the common use protection on firearms possession was established by the Supreme Court three years before his birth in United States v. Miller. Nonetheless, the Court reiterated this standard in the Heller case, striking down Washington D.C.’s universal handgun ban. Assault weapons and magazine bans are no different - both are in common use across the country, regardless of how coastal and urban elites may feel about the matter.

At FPC, we oppose weapons bans, period. There is no conceivable justification for preventing an individual from exercising their right to possess and implement intended for the protection of themselves, their families, and their property. The Right to Bear Arms necessarily includes not only firearms but the items required to effectively defend oneself; after all, what good is an AR-15 without a magazine? By preventing the sale and transfer of these items, Biden is trying to bleed out the market and prevent this and future generations from having access to adequate means of self-defense.

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