SAN FRANCISCO, CA (December 6, 2022) – Today, Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) announced the filing of an important brief with the United States District Court for the Northern District of California in the case of California v. ATF. Initially filed in 2020 by California, Giffords, and two individuals, the case sought to force the ATF to re-define “firearms” under federal law to include numerous non-firearm items. Now, the plaintiffs are trying to “amend” their lawsuit to claim that the ATF’s frame or receiver rule published this year doesn’t go far enough. FPC’s brief, along with its previous motion to intervene, can be viewed at FPCLegal.org.
“Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint is, in reality, an entirely new lawsuit based on a new agency action taken subsequent to Plaintiffs’ filing of this lawsuit,” argues the brief. “The basis of Plaintiffs’ lawsuit is Defendants’ prior implementation of the Gun Control Act of 1968, which Plaintiffs sought to collaterally attack by challenging a series of classification letters issued to non-firearm producers by the [ATF]. That prior implementation of the GCA is currently defunct, and those classification letters are no longer controlling. Accordingly, Applicants in Intervention request that this Court grant Defendants’ motion and dismiss Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint because it concerns an entirely distinct agency action and the basis for Plaintiffs’ original lawsuit is moot.”
“California and Giffords are attempting to hijack their old lawsuit designed to force the ATF to issue the frame or receiver rule to now say that the rule doesn’t go far enough,” said Cody J. Wisniewski, FPC’s Senior Attorney for Constitutional Litigation. “Plaintiffs’ argument that the ATF is required by federal law to regulate even more than it already does is nonsensical, and their attempt to disguise a new lawsuit as an ‘amendment’ to their prior case is legally infirm.”
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Firearms Policy Coalition (firearmspolicy.org), a 501(c)4 nonprofit organization, exists to create a world of maximal human liberty, defend constitutionally protected rights, advance individual liberty, and restore freedom. FPC’s efforts are focused on the Right to Keep and Bear Arms and adjacent issues including freedom of speech, due process, unlawful searches and seizures, separation of powers, asset forfeitures, privacy, encryption, and limited government. The FPC team are next-generation advocates working to achieve the Organization’s strategic objectives through litigation, research, scholarly publications, amicus briefing, legislative and regulatory action, grassroots activism, education, outreach, and other programs.
FPC Law (FPCLaw.org) is the nation’s first and largest public interest legal team focused on the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, and the leader in the Second Amendment litigation and research space.