According to his gun control plan, Joe Biden intends to use federal funds to “incentivize” states and local governments to “require individuals to obtain a license prior to purchasing a gun.” Biden also aims to pay states that adopt red flag laws which would “enable family members or law enforcement officials to temporarily remove an individual’s access to firearms”, using the U.S. Department of Justice to “issue best practices and offer technical assistance” to states who take the deal.

While the federal government has conditioned the receipt of specialized funding on state compliance, these funds are conditionally granted by the Congress, not by the Executive. A good example of this is withholding NHTSA funding from states to force them to raise the legal drinking age to 21. 

However, by granting money without Congressional approval, Biden would be violating the separation of powers, usurping the authority of both the Legislative Branch and trampling the sovereignty of affected states and their residents. The Founders limited the federal government’s authority to intervene in domestic affairs by confining its regulatory role to interstate commerce. Biden is attempting to circumvent this safeguard by bribing states to implement laws that he knows the federal government cannot implement itself.

Firearms Policy Coalition opposes the debasement of the separation of powers doctrine and the enactment of laws enforced against unrepresented people by politicians who would exceed the scope of their constitutionally granted authority. Furthermore, FPC opposes the proposed regulations on principle alone. Red flag laws deny individuals the right to due process and allow bad actors and the government to weaponize the courts against private individuals. Enacting a licensing requirement will violate our right to keep and bear arms by serving as a prerequisite to exercise a constitutional right, forcing people to bow down and request permission from the government to purchase a firearm. If this standard were applied to the right to vote, it would certainly be found unconstitutional, so the question is, how can it be permitted when applied to the right to self-defense?