ATF: Obama’s order on guns doesn’t change anything for us

Photo: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – President Barack Obama’s executive order on gun control has sparked emotion on both sides of the gun control debate.

Putting emotion aside, News 2 investigated what, if anything, his order means right now.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), which enforces federal gun control, laws told News 2 that Obama’s order doesn’t change anything for them.

It eventually could, but right now, anyone who could buy a gun or sell a gun before this executive order still can if they follow the law.

The ATF did released guidelines on Tuesday which only clarify existing Federal law.

If you’re an occasional gun seller, you don’t need a federal license, but if you sell guns frequently – online, at a gun show or in a store – you do need a license and to perform a background check on your buyer.

But ATF spokesman Michael Knight says that’s not new.

“That law has already been on the books,” he said Wednesday. “The law has not change it’s just the ATF guidelines are to educate the public.”

There are several components to the President’s executive order but Knight says nothing has changed federal law.

If you are “engaged in the business” of selling firearms you must obtain a license and if you follow the law, you can continue to do business as usual.

Also, any law-abiding citizen that was able to buy a gun before the executive order still can.

“Still, ATF encourages the public wishing to sell firearms to review the guidelines to determine if obtaining a federal firearms license is required,” said Knight.

The President wants to add 200 ATF agents to his 2017 budget but Congress will have to pass it.

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