Welcome to a weekly series here on Pew Pew Tactical dedicated to the gun news you need to know.
So, keep reading for this week’s notable news headlines…
Table of Contents
Should Those Under Felony Indictment Have 2A Rights? Texas Judge Says Yes.
A federal judge in Texas ruled that Americans under felony indictments should not be prohibited from buying guns.
U.S. District Judge David Counts pointed to the Supreme Court’s landmark summer ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association vs. Bruen, which gave Americans the right to carry a handgun for home defense outside their homes.
In a 25-page opinion, the judge said the ruling negates federal law prohibiting people charged with a felony from purchasing firearms.
“The Second Amendment is not a ‘second class right,’” Counts wrote in the opinion.
“After Bruen, the Government must prove that laws regulating conduct covered by the Second Amendment’s plain text align with this Nation’s historical tradition. The Government does not meet that burden.”
“Although not exhaustive, the Court’s historical survey finds little evidence that § 922(n) — which prohibits those under felony indictment from obtaining a firearm — aligns with this Nation’s historical tradition. As a result, this Court holds that § 922(n) is unconstitutional.”
At the center of the case is Jose Gomez Quiroz of West Texas, who purchased a .22-caliber semi-auto handgun in 2021. At the time, he faced charges of burglary and jumping bail but denied being under indictment when he bought the gun.
After the purchase, the National Instant Criminal Background Check System alerted law enforcement that the gun purchase was illegal. Quiroz was subsequently arrested and charged with making a false statement during a gun purchase and illegally receipt of a gun by a person under indictment.
He was convicted on both accounts.
After the Bruen decision was handed down in June, though, Quiroz asked the court to reconsider his case.
In light of the Supreme Court decision, Counts, appointed by Trump, granted a Motion to Reconsider, saying that the legal landscape had changed.
“There are no illusions about this case’s real-world consequences — certainly valid public policy and safety concerns exist,” he said.
“Yet Bruen framed those concerns solely as a historical analysis. This Court follows that framework.”
To read more about New York State Rifle & Pistol Association vs. Bruen, check out our full article.
Lawmakers Fight Back Against Credit Card Companies Tracking Gun Purchases
Attorneys General of 24 states and at least 101 members of Congress have fired back against credit card companies seeking to classify gun and ammo purchases in a trackable, specialty category.
Swiss-based International Organization for Standardization announced last week that firearm and ammo sales would be re-classified with a new four-digit merchant category code (MCC) for credit card processors.
The request for the reclassification came from Amalgamated Bank – an activist bank headquartered in New York.
The bank said the new codes would be crucial in “creating new tools that all financial institutions must now use to begin detecting and reporting suspicious activity associated with gun trafficking and mass shootings to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the government agency charged with safeguarding the financial system from illicit use.”
But the gun industry and some lawmakers say this change targets law-abiding gun owners and violates privacy.
A letter signed by 24 attorneys general and sent to the CEOs of American Express, Mastercard, and Visa rebuked the reclassification of gun purchases saying that the Second Amendment is a fundamental right.
“Americans are tired of seeing corporate leverage used to advance political goals that cannot muster basic democratic support,” the letter stated.
“The Second Amendment is a fundamental right, but it’s also a fundamental American value. Our financial institutions should stop lending their market power to those who wish to attack that value.”
Additionally, over 100 members of the House of Representatives signed a letter saying that specific codes would cause burdens on mom-and-pop firearms retailers.
Meanwhile, a third letter was sent by 12 senators ominously warning credit card companies about the consequences of tracking gun transactions.
“Creating a new merchant code for gun transactions is a choice being made by each of your companies. You are choosing the side of gun control advocates over the privacy and Second Amendment rights of millions of law-abiding Americans.”
For its part, Visa issued a statement regarding the code change affirming its position against it.
“Asking private companies to decide what legal products or services can or cannot be bought and from what store sets a dangerous precedent,” the credit card company said.
“Further, it would be an invasion of consumers’ privacy for banks and payment networks to know each of our most personal purchasing habits. Visa is firmly against this.”
No word yet from Mastercard or American Express.
NY Lawmaker Proposes Licensing for “Assault Weapon” Ownership
New York Representative Chris Jacobs proposed legislation that would require a 5-year license for anyone seeking to purchase a semi-auto firearm.
Under the Federal Assault Weapons Licensing Act, Americans would be required to undergo an expanded FBI background check and show proof of firearms safety training in order to be allowed to legally purchase a semi-automatic rifle, shogun, or pistol.
Additionally, the background check would require additional materials like identity documents and fingerprints before approval.
The license, if approved, would need to be renewed every five years and allows the government to suspend a license if they find that the person “poses a threat to themselves or others.”
Those who already own a semi-auto firearm would be grandfathered in, and active-duty military and law enforcement would be exempt.
Jacobs called the legislation “common sense” and emphasized that it’s about keeping guns out of the wrong hands.
“While the overwhelming majority of Americans who own these weapons are law-abiding, responsible gun owners – the increasing trend of mass shootings with these weapons shows additional safeguards must be placed upon obtaining them,” Jacobs told the Springville Journal.
“My bill will better ensure these guns do not fall into the wrong hands, while still protecting Americans’ ability to exercise their Second Amendment rights.”
TSA Reports Increase in Guns Found at Airport Checkpoints
The Transportation Security Administration said it’s on track to have another record-breaking year as the number of firearms found at airport checkpoints across the nation increases.
So far, the TSA has documented more than 4,600 guns at U.S. airports, with 87% of those loaded. Last year the organization found 6,000 guns at 268 airports.
Georgia’s Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport led the country in the most discovered firearms, with 507 recovered at its checkpoints.
“Entering a checkpoint with a firearm, particularly a loaded one, is an expensive mistake,” TSA spokesperson Carter Langston told The New York Times.
If a gun is found at a security checkpoint, TSA is instructed to call law enforcement which handles the situation with penalties varying by state.
The TSA can fine individuals up to $14,000 in addition to that person losing PreCheck membership privileges for five years.
For more on how to fly with guns, check out our article here!
What do you think of the headlines above? Let us know in the comments. Also, catch up on other Weekly Wraps or news in our News Category.