Montana's Congressman, Denny Rehberg, today released the following statement after The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) formally delayed a request by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to implement new gun control regulations through "emergency" rulemaking procedures. ATF had originally asked OMB to approve the decision by January 5, 2011, long before the end of the traditional 60-day public comment period.
OMB's decision to delay ATF's rush request comes after Rehberg wrote a letter to the President in December voicing strong opposition not only to the application itself, but also to the hurried timeline that the ATF had requested. The letter was signed by 36 other Members of Congress, from both parties.
"This is a win for the preservation of our Second Amendment Rights, and I'm glad the White House decided to delay the ruling in order to consider public comments. Gun control advocates always want to blame guns for crime and violence even though the facts just don't bear that out. Cities with the strongest gun control laws have among the highest violent crime rates. The White House did the right thing in heeding my letter, and Montanans can be confident that I'll continue to beat back any attempt to expand gun control through the regulatory process. I believe that only Congress, not unelected bureaucrats, should have the power to implement these types of requirements. And I think that when the White House reads the comments submitted by firearms dealers, owners and other impacted parties, they will see that this regulation would be an onerous burden on small businesses and gun owners." - Denny Rehberg, Montana's Congressman
"This was a blatant attempt to circumvent the legislative arena and to abuse the "emergency rule" process. Had this measure gone into effect, it would have resulted in a registry of law-abiding gun owners and it would also have placed unnecessary burdens on law-abiding firearms retailers. Thanks to Congressman Rehberg's leadership and to the bi-partisan support from a group of House members, this abuse of the regulatory process has been stopped for now." - Chris W. Cox, executive director, NRA Institute for Legislative Action