Inhofe targets bullet ban in budget

Inhofe targets bullet ban in budget
© Lauren Schneiderman

A Senate Republican is looking to block the Obama administration from reviving a controversial bullet ban.

A budget amendment offered Tuesday by Sen. Jim InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofePressure mounts for Trump to reconsider Syria withdrawal Dems express alarm at Trump missile defense plans Dem senator expresses concern over acting EPA chief's 'speedy promotion' MORE (R-Okla.) would prohibit the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) from placing new restrictions on bullets that are popular with hunters.

“Congress has spoken time and again on its intent to protect Americans’ Second Amendment rights, but the Obama administration is responding by going around Congress through regulations,” Inhofe said.

“This amendment would protect popular ammunition used for sporting purposes from being banned under the current administration,” he added.

His amendment comes after the ATF earlier this month backed down from a proposal to ban a certain type of armor-piercing ammunition used in AR-15 hunting rifles. 

The bullet ban faced a chorus of opposition from Republicans and gun rights groups, and the ATF eventually relented, shelving the plan indefinitely.

Concerned the ATF will try to revive the bullet ban in the future, Republicans have responded by pushing a number of bills that would prevent the agency from regulating this sort of ammunition.

Inhofe’s bill is just the latest piece of GOP legislation that pushes back against the ATF. 

He also introduced several other gun amendments, including one that would continue to block the federal government from creating a national firearms registry and another that would bar federal agents from targeting the bank accounts of gun shops.

“Currently, a national gun registry is prohibited under federal law, and that’s how it should remain,” Inhofe said. “There is a reason such a registry is outlawed as it has the potential to be misused by the federal government for suppressing Americans' Second Amendment rights."