EXCLUSIVE: Rep. Mark Green Introduces Bill To Block Biden Admin Rule Restricting Firearm Sales

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Republican Tennessee Rep. Mark Green introduced a bill Wednesday to block the implementation of a new Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) rule that would impose greater restrictions on firearm exports.

The BIS rule released April 30 would make a number of changes to licensing policies that firearm manufacturers, sellers and trade groups say will harm businesses. Green’s Stop the Bureaucratic Ineptitude Shuttering Respectable and Upstanding Lawful Exporters Act (Stop the BIS RULE Act) bill, co-sponsored by 11 other Republican representatives, prohibits the use of federal funds “to finalize, implement, or enforce” the rule.

“Some business owners have already lost everything because of the Biden administration’s unjust gun export pause,” Green told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Yet this final rule is even more destructive. It will harm American business owners, hinder the right of people overseas to protect themselves, and will allow China and Russia to fill the void.”

Changes in the rule include lowering export license validity to one year rather than four, inserting a “crime control” licensing requirement and applying a “presumption of denial” to export applications to 36 countries deemed high-risk. The rule follows a 90-day pause on new export licenses for civilian firearms that the BIS announced in October, though it lasted over 180 days.

Green called for BIS to end the pause in a letter joined by 87 other Republican lawmakers in November. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Republican Rep. Mark Green Introduces Bill To Lift Biden Admin Restriction On Firearm Sellers)

Now, Green said the new BIS rule is “intentionally vague” to give the Biden administration “the cover it needs to stonewall license applications.” The crime control policy allows the Biden administration to “punish law-abiding American firearm exporters for crimes committed in other countries,” Green said.

The US Department of Commerce building is seen in Washington, DC, in February 2, 2024. (Photo by Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP)

The new rule is expected to have an over $250 million impact on manufacturers and exporters, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF). Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF Senior Vice President & General Counsel, said in a statement the rule is a “wholesale attack on the industry that provides the means for Americans exercising their Second Amendment rights.”

“Licenses will be approved on a case-by-case basis that will consider foreign policy, national security risk factors, government corruption, diversion of firearms and human rights abuses among other criteria,” the NSSF wrote in response to the rule. “BIS is stating there will be a presumption of denial for firearm export licenses to those countries arbitrarily identified by the State Department as ‘at risk,’ which include 36 countries – mostly in Latin America, the Caribbean and Southeast Asian countries.”

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said in a statement that the rule is aimed at “protecting America’s national security by making it harder for criminals, terrorists, and cartels to get their hands on U.S.-made firearms.”

“Too often, firearms exports fall into the wrong hands and end up being used in ways that directly undermine U.S. national security and foreign policy interests,” Raimondo said. “To combat this, we’re taking strategic, targeted actions, including restricting exports to commercial entities in high-risk countries and increasing scrutiny and tracking of all firearms exports,” said U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo.

Co-sponsors for the Stop the BIS RULE Act include Republican Reps. Andy Ogles of Tennessee, Diana Harshbarger of Tennessee, Jeff Duncan of South Carolina, Dan Bishop of North Carolina, Ben Cline of Virginia, Clay Higgins of Louisiana, Randy Weber of Texas, Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Andrew Clyde of Georgia, Aaron Bean of Florida and Brian Babin of Texas.

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