Update — On April 1, 2019, the D.C. Circuit rejected all challenges to the federal bump stock ban and allowed it to fully take effect, as argued for in our amicus brief.
Case Information: Guedes et al. v Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms et al., Case No. 19-5042 (D.C. Cir. brief filed March 13, 2019).
At Issue: This case presents constitutional and other legal challenges to the federal bump stock rule finalized in December 2018 by the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF). The rule states that bump stocks — devices designed to convert semiautomatic rifles to fire fully automatically — are “machineguns” as defined by federal law, and are thus illegal. The plaintiffs-appellants filed suit against ATF, arguing that this rule contradicts the previous federal definition of machinegun and is arbitrary and capricious, among other legal claims.
Giffords Law Center’s Brief: Our brief argues that the plain meaning of “machinegun” includes devices that convert a firearm to a machinegun and thus encompasses bump stocks because bump stocks allow for automatic fire by a single function of the trigger. Our brief further argues that the ATF rule is not arbitrary or capricious, both because political concern over rulemaking does not render a rule arbitrary and capricious, and because the rule is rationally connected to the grave safety risks posed by bump stocks and consistent with the National Firearm Act’s purpose in banning machineguns.