On Friday February 13 at 4:00 pm, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms released a proposal to ban commonly used M855 “green tip” AR-15 ammunition under the guise of law enforcement safety. The same day the proposal was released, on a Friday of a three day holiday weekend, ATF opened up a shortened 30-day period for the public to submit comments about the new regulation.
But it turns out, ATF has been working on a ban of AR-15 “green-tip” ammunition for quite some time and has already issued the ban in its new, 2014 Regulation Guide. Read more at Townhall.com.
Since the story above was released, the ATF has issued a statement claiming the 2014 Regulation Guide contains a publishing error and that they have not yet rescinded the M855 exemption.
“On Feb. 13, 2015, ATF released for public comment a proposed framework, including legal and technical analysis, to guide its determination on what ammunition is “primarily intended for sporting purposes” for purposes of granting exemptions to the Gun Control Act’s prohibition on Armor Piecing Ammunition. This proposed framework is posted for public comment only; no final decisions have been made as to its adoption . . .
Media reports have noted that the 2014 ATF Regulation Guide published online does not contain a listing of the exemptions for Armor Piercing Ammunition, and concluding that the absence of this listing indicates these exemptions have been rescinded.
Please be advised that ATF has not rescinded any Armor Piercing Ammunition exemption, and the fact they are not listed in the 2014 online edition of the regulations, was an error, which has no legal impact on the validity of the exemptions. The existing exemptions for armor piercing ammunition, which apply to 5.56 mm (.223) SS 109 and M855 projectiles (identified by a green coating on the projectile tip), and the U.S .30-06 M2AP projectile (identified by a black coating on the projectile tip), remain in effect.
The listing of Armor Piercing Ammunition exemptions can be found in the 2005 ATF Regulation Guide on page 166, which is posted here.
The 2014 Regulation Guide will be corrected in PDF format to include the listing of Armor Piercing Ammunition exemptions and posted shortly. The e-book/iBook version of the Regulation Guide will be corrected in the near future. ATF apologizes for any confusion caused by this publishing error.”
In otherwords, we assumed this proposed ban would go uncontested, had already written this document based on that assumption, and your comments don’t mean a thing. The good news however, is that the majority of the House of Representatives are in opposition to this ban and we may yet see Congress move against this ban. Of course, anything they do will face a presidential veto but, maybe, just maybe, they can override that or roll it back after 2016 provided we can maintain a Congressional majority and get a decent candidate into the White House. Sadly, I’m not terribly optimistic in that regard.