House Republicans are looking for ways to slash government expenditure and resist what many terms the “weaponization” of police enforcement, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) is a frequent target of gun rights proponents.
Cutting money for the federal gun control agency, the White House claims will help the Mexican drug gangs.
To prepare for President Joe Biden’s expected reelection announcement in the coming months, the White House is attempting to shift the narrative on Republicans, who frequently portray Democrats as against the police, by stressing that it is now conservatives, led by Trump, who is calling to defund the Department of Justice.
After being arraigned this week on felony charges by New York’s Democratic District Attorney Alvin Bragg, former President Donald Trump joined several Congressional Republicans in calling to “defund” the Department of Justice (of which ATF is a part) and the FBI “until they come to their senses.”
According to White House spokesman Andrew Bates, the Republicans are attempting to sabotage President Biden’s plan to keep weapons out of the hands of drug traffickers.
In an official statement, Bates said that MAGA Republican radicalism in Congress is an increasing danger to the battle against violent criminals and opioid trafficking. “To stop fentanyl from entering the country, President Biden is working hard to stop the flow of guns into the hands of drug traffickers. Yet, staunch MAGA lawmakers are actively working to undermine these initiatives.”
It’s not easy to legally acquire a handgun in Mexico. The flow of weapons from the United States into Mexico dubbed the “Iron Pipeline,” has been the subject of efforts by experts and government officials on both sides of the border. Estimates from the United States government have the percentage of American-made firearms confiscated by Mexican authorities at as high as 70%.
The ATF is a federal law enforcement organization that prevents weapons from falling into criminals’ hands. Bates claims that “MAGA Republicans in Congress are pushing to defund and eliminate the ATF.” Drug gangs can now outgun the police thanks to assault guns obtained in the United States.
Several gun rights advocates will likely target the ATF in response to Vice President Biden’s pledge to utilize presidential authority to clamp down on illicit firearms.
At a hearing last month, House Republicans spoke against a proposed new rule on pistol bracing and raised the possibility of defunding or abolishing the agency.