Thursday, April 13, 2017

Trump has been easing Obama-era gun restrictions. You just may not have heard.

With little attention, President Donald Trump’s administration has been quietly loosening firearms restrictions in the United States after successfully seeking the support of gun owners on the campaign trail. His agencies narrowed the definition of “fugitive,” a change that cuts the number of people who’ll be included in a database designed to keep firearms from people who are barred from owning them. Federal officials have also signaled that they may no longer defend the Army Corps of Engineers’ ban on carrying loaded firearms and ammunition on federal lands. Trump signed a bill behind closed doors that killed an Obama-era regulation that required the government to add to the no-buy list people whom the Social Security Administration has deemed eligible for mental disability payments. He signed another one that lifted restrictions on hunting on federal lands in Alaska. With Republicans in control of the White House and Congress, gun rights groups are on the offensive for the first time in years, aggressively looking to push a series of new laws on Capitol Hill and regulations in various federal agencies to ease restrictions. Last month, the Army Corps of Engineers signaled that it was considering dropping its gun ban in a case now before the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals involving a Georgia couple who objected to the ban. “The Army Corps of Engineers is reconsidering the firearm policy challenged in this case, as well as plaintiff’s requests for permission to carry firearms on Army Corps property,” the Army Corps of Engineers argued in a motion asking that the couple’s case be moved to mediation...more

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