Governor Greg Gianforte criticized the Biden administration for issuing a rule which undermines the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Montana gunowners.
The Department of Justice and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) recently revised criteria for firearms with stabilizing braces, subjecting nearly all firearms with attached stabilizing braces to taxation and registration requirements of the National Firearms Act.
“This decision further erodes the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Montanans,” Gov. Gianforte wrote in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland. “Our right to keep and bear arms is integral to Montana’s and our nation’s rich heritage, and this rule directly violates our long-held traditions. The rule also ignores the design and intent of stabilizing braces – to help disabled veterans fire large format pistols.”
In the letter, the governor emphasized the rule is unenforceable by the State of Montana due to protections in state law he championed in 2021.
“As a matter of law, the State of Montana and its political subdivisions cannot enforce, or assist the ATF with enforcement, of this rule,” the governor wrote.
Signed into law by the governor in 2021, House Bill 258 prohibits the enforcement of any federal law, executive order, rule, or regulation that infringes upon ownership, possession, transfer, or use of any firearm, magazine, or firearm accessory in Montana.
Gov. Gianforte concluded, “This rule creates additional barriers to lawful gun ownership and undermines our Montana way of life. I strongly urge you to reverse this decision to acknowledge and respect Montana’s long history of responsible gun ownership.”
Gov. Gianforte’s letter to Attorney General Garland can be viewed here.
PRESS RELEASE PROVIDED BY GOVERNOR GREG GIANFORTE