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Weekly Wrap: S&W Subpoenaed by House & Brady Says Semi-Auto Rifles = Machine Guns

House Committee targets Smith & Wesson, anti-gun group says WASR-10 is a machine gun, and an assault weapons ban passes the House.

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So, keep reading for this week’s notable news headlines…

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Smith & Wesson Subpoenaed by House Committee

Gun maker Smith & Wesson was subpoenaed by the House Committee on Oversight and Reform Tuesday to turn over revenue and business practices data.

Gun maker Smith & Wesson is the target of a subpoena sent by a House Committee.

The House Committee is in the middle of an investigation into the firearm industry. Specifically, the committee is looking into the manufacturing and sale of AR-style firearms.

After refusing to turn over information voluntarily, Smith & Wesson was served the subpoena.

Previously, Smith & Wesson’s CEO, Mark Smith, was set to testify before Congress but later changed course.

S&W M&P Sport II side of rifle
S&W M&P Sport II

“Mr. Smith initially accepted the invitation to appear, but abruptly withdrew from the hearing only five days before it was set to occur — despite the Committee’s good-faith efforts to secure his voluntary participation,” the committee said in a press release.

The committee said it was imperative that the gun maker turn over documents.

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“This subpoena was made necessary by your unwillingness to voluntarily comply with the Committee’s investigation, including your refusal to testify about your company’s troubling business practices at the Committee’s July 27, 2022, hearing and your refusal to voluntarily produce key information about your company’s sale of assault weapons to civilians,” Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) said in a statement. Maloney serves as the committee’s chairwoman.

S&W M&P Sport II shooting in the hills

Smith & Wesson wasn’t the only gun maker targeted by the committee. The group highlighted four other manufacturers during its investigation. Daniel Defense, Ruger, Sig Sauer, and Bushmaster also topped the list of gun makers the committee seeks info from.

Sig Sauer and Bushmaster also did not meet the committee’s demands for specific information regarding the sales data of its rifles. They, too, may be subject to subpoenas.

Smith & Wesson has not commented on the matter at the time of this article.  

Brady Group Says Some Semi-Auto Rifles Should Classify as Machine Guns

Anti-gun group Brady: United Against Gun Violence filed a lawsuit last week claiming that the WASR-10 and other similar rifles are not semi-autos and, in fact, meet the legal definition of a machine gun.

WASR 10
WASR 10

The suit cites the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosive’s NFA definition of a machine as a basis for this claim.

According to the complaint, the WASR-10 “possesses design features which facilitate full automatic fire by a simple modification or elimination of existing component parts.”

WASR10, PSAK47, PAP M92
WASR10, PSAK47, PAP M92

The group specifically points to three ways the WASR could be rendered into a machine gun:

  • replacing the manufacturer-installed sear system inside the firearm (which enables semi-automatic fire) with a third-party sear system which enables automatic fire;
  • shaving down part of the manufacturer-installed sear system to change the way it functions and
  • attaching an external device such as a “bump stock” or trigger crank to the firearm.

It’s worth noting that the WASR-10 fires one bullet with every trigger pull, thereby classifying it as a semi-auto under the ATF’s definition.

PAP M92 and WASR 10
PAP M92 and WASR 10

The suit, which names Century Arms and Romanian gun maker ROMARM, centers on a shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in Gilroy, California, in 2019 that claimed three lives and injured 17 people.

During the attack, the shooter used a WASR-10 equipped with a 75-round drum magazine.

There’s no indication that the WASR used in the Gilroy shooting was a full-auto version, which the complaint acknowledges.

“Whether or not the Rifle used in the Attack was, in fact, modified to fire in a fully automatic fashion, its ready susceptibility to such modification rendered it a ‘machinegun’ as sold, prohibiting its sale to the general public,” the lawsuit said.

House Passes Assault Weapons Ban; Bill Expected to Falter in Senate

An assault weapons ban passed the House last week with a narrow 217 to 213 victory, but the measure is expected to falter once it reaches the Senate.

H.R. 1808 would outlaw some of the most popular semi-auto shotguns and rifles on the market, mirroring a similar ban passed in 1994.

“The assault weapons ban would take the weapons of war off our streets and save countless lives,” Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-New York, told Yahoo!

Pro-gun politicians had a different take, though.

“[The bill] constitutes the greatest attack on the constitutional rights of law-abiding gun owners that I have seen during my time here in Congress…Rather than protecting the rights enshrined in the Second Amendment, H.R. 1808 would ban a broad group of firearms, including some of the most popular firearms on the market today,” Rep. Tom Cole said.

Modded AR-15s
Modded AR-15s

According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, there are over 24 million modern sporting rifles in circulation in the U.S.

Pew Pew Tactical is working on a full article running down what the bill means and what gun owners can expect, so stay tuned.

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.

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10 Leave a Reply

  • Commenter Avatar
    jeffery holmes

    Forgive my ignorance but these guns are semi automatic by design and remain so until modification is done? Wouldn't that be like every other semi automatic in the sense that it designed to be semi automatic and altering that makes it a different gun? I mean if you put a Kawasaki engine in a Harley would it really be a Harley any more?

    August 19, 2022 7:18 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Brian Janota

    All law abiding gun owners beware the government and woke. Left are joined together to slowly take away your second amendment rights .Your president has even said he would abolish the second amendment .All who voted for big socialist government are getting what they voted for.

    August 8, 2022 7:40 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Franz Oberbauer

    Why is it that when someone breaks the law by using a gun, they don't want to enforce the laws they have in place. Instead, they try to take away or make it even more difficult for a law-abiding citizen to purchase or own a legal firearm. We are not the ones that have broken the law. The whole ghost gun thing is something that should have never happened to begin with. Who would want to purchase an unfinished firearm receiver with no serial number. For the slow people out there, the criminal would. Thats why they are being found at crime scenes and in possession of people who are not allowed to own a firearm. Can't help but wonder if that is why the powers that be let it go on for so long that way, they have a reason to try to control the legal firearms owners with stricter laws or talks of bans. The majority of problems with ghost guns would not be an issue if they had serial numbers and had background checks like they have in North Carolina.

    August 6, 2022 11:42 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      monster

      "Who would want to purchase an unfinished firearm receiver with no serial number. "

      Please tell me this a sarcastic question. No way someone is this retarded.

      August 7, 2022 7:59 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      monster

      So-called ghost guns aren't an issue when it comes to crime. The only issue homemade weapons cause is the government has no idea that one has it. Anyone who gets caught up with the term "ghost gun" also gets their panties bunched with the term "assault weapon" and should not be commenting on anything gun related. As a matter of fact, any person who is against Americans building their own weapons and has a problem with any weapon that require a trigger pull for each round should move to China. Franz must come from a place where every human action and thought is controlled by the state.

      August 7, 2022 8:06 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Franz Oberbauer

        Yes I was being sarcastic about the whole ghost gun thing. I have no problem with anyone building there own firearm as I have done several myself. Funny thing is that I live in North Carolina and with the influx of people moving here from liberal states they are trying their damndest to do exactly what you said. I only wish that when they move here they would remember that they didn't like where they came from so don't try to change it to where they came from. No problem with how many people move here just don't like when they try to change everything to fit there belief as to how things should be done. Also my father grew up in WW2 Germany so it has been beaten into me to not trust the government and question everything that they are doing. Especially when it comes to certain freedoms. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

        August 7, 2022 10:33 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Sua Sponte

    Should have done what democrats do when called, tell 'em to pound sand. Investigation? Yeah, last time I checked you're not a law enforcement entity, there is no criminal charges, so, yeah, pound sand. They're going to vilify you either way.

    August 6, 2022 5:03 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    John

    The left struggles with the truth so they change the narrative. Using the concept of something having the "potential" such as converting a semi-auto to full-auto is their way of trying to change the truth. A rifle with a 16 inch barrel also has the "potential" to be an SBR and therefore subject to NFA tax stamp, but in fact it is not unless modified.

    August 6, 2022 1:58 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    John

    Collectively, the Brady Group and the house democrats who voted for this doomed (in senate) ban bill, should classify as a terrorist organization. They have a lot in common with terrorist organizations. They and terrorist organizations use political rhetoric to deny and disguise their true intentions, they and terrorist organizations assert a 'right' to deny others their rights, and they and terrorist organizations have dangerous covert and overt agendas that will result in harm or death to others.

    August 6, 2022 11:57 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Will

    The thing we need a ban on is this criminal administration. None of them should be allowed anywhere near a position of power ever again.

    August 6, 2022 11:12 am
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