A rule that closes the ‘gun-show loophole’ in four states has been blocked by a federal judge

On Wednesday, a federal judge in Texas expanded a previous temporary ruling to impact Texas, Louisiana, Utah, and Mississippi by blocking the Biden administration’s attempt to close the “gun show loophole.”

Last month, Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk made a ruling that the purchase of firearms in Texas could not be subject to a background check requirement. Recently, he has expanded this injunction to include three other states. Thus, the purchase of firearms in these states cannot be contingent upon the completion of background checks.

As of May 20, the Biden administration implemented a new rule that has been contested by plaintiffs who claim that it violates the rights of gun owners and goes beyond the federal government’s jurisdiction.

According to Kacsmaryk, the rule imposed a burden on firearms owners to prove their innocence instead of the government proving their guilt. This could lead to civil or criminal penalties for acts that were considered lawful just a day before. The judge sided with the plaintiffs, stating that the rule was unjust and unfair.

He discovered that the language meant to safeguard gun owners from legal action was insufficient.

In the judge’s opinion, the safe harbor provision of the statute is utterly absurd because it fails to provide any safety to the vast majority of gun owners.

Enforcement of the rule has been blocked for a variety of gun rights organizations, including the Gun Owners of America, which boasts over 1 million members throughout the nation. The ruling stands to protect these groups from any potential negative impacts of the rule.

A couple of lawsuits have contested the background check regulation, with one spearheaded by Arkansas and Kansas and backed by 19 other states. Another lawsuit has been filed by Florida.

In a recent statement, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) proudly announced that an injunction has been attained against Biden’s ATF rule, which was deemed unlawful and would have resulted in the criminalization of private gun sales. Paxton further added that the unconstitutional rule cannot be enforced in Texas, and he is dedicated to fighting and winning for the state’s Second Amendment rights.

As of now, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) rule is still in effect across the country, except for the area where Kacsmaryk’s decision has been implemented. Other legal challenges are still pending and it is expected that the federal government will appeal the decision. Until the judge reaches a final ruling on the case, the injunction will remain in effect.

As part of his role in Texas, Kacsmaryk, who was appointed by Trump, has been responsible for overseeing a number of politically contentious cases. There has been criticism from Democrats regarding what they call “judge shopping,” whereby conservatives have been filing cases at the federal courthouse in Amarillo with the intention of having Kacsmaryk preside over them.

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