President Joe Biden’s proposed budget for the fiscal year 2024 includes nearly $2 billion for gun control enforcement by the FBI, Department of Justice, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
According to the budget, the funding will be used to regulate the firearms industry further, create gun trafficking strike forces, enforce background checks, and implement the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which is part of a $17.8 billion “investment” in the DOJ’s federal law enforcement capacity.
The ATF will receive $1.9 billion, a $200 million increase over the budget for 2023.
Along with the DOJ and ATF, the FBI will receive $51 million to continue implementing the enhanced background checks mandated by the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.
According to the legislation, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which went into effect in 2022, provided funding for implementing red flag laws, expanded background checks, and invested in state crisis intervention orders.
Since the passage of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the ATF has implemented two final rules and increased requirements for gun dealers, as requested by Biden.
Following their implementations, the pistol stabilizing brace final rule and the ghost gun parts final rule drew criticism, with the ghost gun parts final rule currently subject to a temporary injunction by a federal judge.
Did you know @ATFHQ's budget has grown by nearly 25% since @JoeBiden took office? #DEFUNDATF https://t.co/K6hwTyYelc
— Aidan Johnston (@RealGunLobbyist) March 9, 2023
Republican lawmakers and Second Amendment advocacy groups have criticized the ATF’s “zero tolerance” policy, which has resulted in a 16-year high in Federal-Firearm License revocations in 2022.
The increased number of license revocations, 92 in 2022 alone, is due to the ATF’s new policy and updated procedure, as they no longer always go through a multi-step process, instead opting to pull licenses for a variety of “willful” violations.
“That’s not how regulatory agencies are supposed to work in the sector that they’re supposed to regulate,” Gun Owners of America’s director of federal affairs Aidan Johnston told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
“They are supposed to help the companies, they’re supposed to ensure compliance but they’re not supposed to punish and destroy an entire industry based on just political opposition or political distaste.”