Possible President-Elect Joe Biden’s proposed gun control plan could cost gun owners a massive $34 billion in new taxes if implemented based on an old provision that would require individuals to register and mandate a tax fee in order for one to keep the guns and magazines they already possess.
According to Biden’s aggressive gun control plan, the former Vice President proposes to enact legislation to “ban the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines” while pursuing legislation that would regulate the possession of existing assault weapons under the National Firearms Act.
Currently, the National Firearms Act requires individuals possessing machine-guns, silencers, and short-barreled rifles to undergo a background check and register those weapons with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Under the 1934 NFA Act, it imposes a $200 federal tax stamp mandate for every high-capacity magazine American gun owners currently own. Citing former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ Law Center memorandum for its gun control policy proposes Congress requires all existing “assault weapons” to be regulated under the National Firearms Act.
Based on Giffords’ memorandum, it specifically defines “assault weapons” to include the AR-15, saying, “Assault weapons are a class of semiautomatic firearms that are designed to kill people quickly and efficiently. The most common variety, the AR-15, is the civilian version of the M16, a combat rifle that made its debut on the battlefield in Vietnam.”
Based on the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban law Biden has touted as legislation he once secured, but it has now longed expired defines “high-capacity magazine” as anything over 10 rounds. It is unclear now the exact number of rounds Biden is considering that will constitute a high-capacity magazine as he implied during the campaign trail banning “magazines that can hold multiple bullets.”
“The idea that we don’t have elimination of assault-type weapons, magazines that can hold multiple bullets in them. It’s absolutely mindless. It is no violation of the Second Amendment. It is just a bow to special interests of the gun manufacturers and the NRA,” Biden said back in September 2019.
However, all magazines hold multiple bullets, therefore Biden could be implying a ban on most handguns that hold over a single round.
The plan would also institute a nationwide program of buyback weapons. Under the incentivize voluntary buyback plan, Biden will give “individuals who now possess assault weapons or high-capacity magazines” two options — Sell the weapons to the government, or register them under the National Firearms Act.
If enacted, theoretically speaking, a gun owner who possess an AR-15 and four high-capacity magazines would be required to submit their fingerprints and photograph, undergo an FBI background check, register the weapon and high-capacity magazines with the ATF, and pay the federal government $200 tax each for every weapon and magazines they claim. In total, that gun owner speaking would be paying $1000 in federal taxes for the AR-15 and the four magazines.
The $200 register tax stamp if enacted would be applied to at least 20 million rifles and 150 million ammunition magazines, based on the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) recent report. The new taxes would cost Americans more than $34 billion, based on the reported number calculation.
Mark Oliva, director of public affairs for the NSSF, the gun industry group, called the Biden gun-control plan as an “agenda” for Biden to change and expand the regulations under the 1934 Act that is overall “unconstitutional and unworkable.”
“Biden is trying to push forth an agenda that is unconstitutional and unworkable,” Oliva told Floridian Press. “20 million firearms, 20 million AR-style firearms, or these modern sporting rifles, that’s commonly owned and those commonly owned firearms are protected under the Heller decision. He can’t confiscate those.”
“The Biden Administration is proposing to put every modern sporting rifle or AR- 15 style rifle under that system. It’s semi-automatic rifle technology that operates the same way my duck hunting gun works, but because of the way it looks Biden wants to put it under this system,” Oliva added. “So you’re gonna flood the system with all these background checks that will cause enormous delays because it’s already delayed by nine months and then require everybody to pay tax on the rifles they own, because he reclassified them, and under that tax plan, he also includes possibly the any magazine that’s over 10 rounds. So every magazine that is owned would have to pay an additional $200 in taxes per magazine, just so the owner can keep what one already owns.”
Oliva noted that is also “against the law” for Biden to have a national registry of firearm owners, based on the 1986 Firearm Owners Protection Act. Therefore, the notion of having one national registry that Biden wants to enforce would be “proposed to become a 50-state each implementing its own gun registry,” to impose “more fees based on the states gun laws and the gun taxes under the NFA Act just so gun owners can exercise their 2nd Amendment rights.”
Just days before Election Day, Biden tweeted support for a new assault weapons ban.
It’s long past time we take action to end the scourge of gun violence in America.
As president, I’ll ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, implement universal background checks, and enact other common-sense reforms to end our gun violence epidemic.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) November 1, 2020
Since Biden apparent victory called by the media, gun sales have surged over fear he will strip Americans of their right to bear arms on certain types of firearms, while most aren’t taking the chance waiting on the results of Georgia Senate runoff races that might allow his plans to ban online gun sales and proposed ban on assault rifles become a reality.
In Florida, the demand for concealed carry applications and gun licenses is at an all-time high. According to the Florida Department of Agriculture, the department is backed up with applications from months ago as the number of appointments, and applicants have doubled with the wait time being three times the normal wait time of around 50-55 days. According to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, over 60,000 concealed weapon or firearm license applications were distributed in September and about 43,000 in October.