Supreme Court strikes down ATF bump stock reinterpretation

In a 6 to 3 decision, the Supreme Court has dealt yet another blow to the ATF’s rampant administrative overreach.

In the case of Garland v. Cargill, embedded below, the court ruled that, despite the emotional pleas underlying the push to reinterpret the statute, the statutory text is clear in its meaning.

A “semiautomatic rifle equipped with a bump stock is not a ‘machinegun’ because it does not fire more than one shot ‘by a single function of the trigger.’”

They went on to note that the ATF and the judiciary are bound by the clear text of the statutes Congress enacts.  If Congress writes those statutes poorly, “it is never our job to rewrite . . . statutory text under the banner of speculation about what Congress might have done.”

And speaking of ‘rewriting’ or ‘reinterpreting’ statutes, we can only hope that there will soon be a ruling that reduces the amount of deference the courts grant to administrative agencies such as the ATF when they use their regulatory rulemaking authority to do that very thing.

Download (PDF, 480KB)

This entry was posted in Administrative Deference, Administrative Law, ATF, ATF Ruling, Bump Fire Stocks, Court Rulings, Machine Guns, US Supreme Court. Bookmark the permalink.