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ATF Violates Agreed Upon Timeline By Filing For An Appeal In Pistol Brace Case by John Crump

The MCX pistol with folding brace is super compact and easy to carry. IMG Jim Grant

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has filed a notice of appeal in a case challenging its rule against pistol braces (FINAL RULE 2021R-08F). Gun Owners of America (GOA) filed a motion for summary judgment a day later.

The case, Texas v. ATF, is a joint effort between GOA, Gun Owners Foundation (GOF), and the state of Texas to take down the ATF’s pistol brace rule.

Just a day before the ATF rule was due to go into effect, Federal District Court Judge Drew Tipton for the Southern District of Texas issued a preliminary injunction (PI) for all GOA members, barring the ATF from taking enforcement actions against them. This ruling came on the heels of the Mock v. Garland Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decision that blocked enforcement of the rule on Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) members. Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) also got a preliminary injunction against the rule before the rule’s effective date.

“For these reasons, the Court GRANTS IN PART Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction, (Dkt. No. 16). Defendants are ENJOINED from enforcing the Final Rule against the private Plaintiffs in this case, including its current members and their resident family members, and individuals employed directly by the State of Texas or its agencies. The preliminary injunction will remain in effect pending resolution of the expedited appeal in Mock v. Garland,” the order reads.

Since then, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has expanded the injunction to cover everyone in the nation, effectively killing the ATF’s rule. Before that happened, according to GOA, all parties agreed to the timeline in the Texas v. ATF case.

Merely one day prior to Texas and GOA submitting a motion for summary judgment, the ATF proceeded to lodge a notice of appeal with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Many think the ATF violated the agreed-upon timeline and is trying to stall for time since the Fifth Circuit appears to be a dead end for a Bureau legal victory.

It is unlikely that the Fifth Circuit of Appeals would overturn Judge Tipton’s decision. The Fifth Circuit is openly hostile to the ATF’s use of the rule-making process.

It has ruled against the ATF’s alleged abuse of its rule-making powers in three different cases. Two of these cases deal with bump stocks (Cargill v. Garland) and frames and receivers (VanDerStok v. Garland). The third case, Mock v. Garland, is almost identical to Texas v. ATF.

GOA, GOF, and Texas were unhappy with the ATF’s actions. They called out the ATF for what they see as an obvious delay tactic. Many agree the ATF’s chances of winning in District Court are non-existent. With the expected defeat at the Fifth Circuit, the only other conceivable reason that the ATF would have to file a notice of appeal is to try to head off another nationwide injunction against its pistol brace rule that GOA and Texas requested in their motion for summary judgment.

“GOF, GOA, & Texas were DAYS away from seeking summary judgment in our lawsuit against the Biden Pistol Ban. ATF had even agreed to the timeline,” GOF posted to X (formerly Twitter). “But, at the 11th hour, appealed to the 5th Circuit (where they have already lost TWICE)—a shameless delay tactic.”

GOA’s motion for summary judgment covers the same topics as their successful PI but with even more substance and evidence. If GOA won easily on the PI and the judge continues to rely on taking cues from the Fifth Circuit, the ATF is looking down the barrel of another defeat. The Fifth Circuit has been critical of the ATF for violating the Administrative Procedures Act (APA).

The ATF has experienced multiple defeats on a cornucopia of issues, including pistol braces, force reset triggers, bump stocks, disarming Americans without due process, and frames and receivers. The only hope to save any of these cases is the Supreme Court, but that doesn’t look like a winning path in most of these legal challenges.

ATF Violates Agreed Upon Timeline By Filing For An Appeal In Pistol Brace Case by AmmoLand Shooting Sports News on Scribd

About John Crump

John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist; he has written about firearms and interviewed people of all walks of life. Mr. Crump lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on X at @crumpyss, or at

John Crump

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