GOA, GOF File Amicus Brief with SCOTUS in Bump Stock Case


January 30, 2024

Washington, D.C. — Yesterday, Gun Owners of America (GOA) and the Gun Owners Foundation filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court of the United States in Garland v. Cargill, a case challenging the ATF’s ban on bump stocks.

Gun Owners of America has been active in pushing back on the Trump-era Bump Stock Ban, which was an onerous attempt by the ATF to re-classify bump stocks as machineguns under federal law. GOA met with officials in the Trump Administration to oppose the ban, has lobbied Capitol Hill to prevent codifying the ban, and even filed a separate lawsuit challenging the ATF’s policy reversal, which was previously denied by the Supreme Court in 2022.

Many Americans are likely unaware that there are various ways to bump fire weapons, including with one’s own shoulder, and even with something as simple as a belt loop.

A summary of GOA’s argument in the amicus brief is below:

  • The ATF’s reversal of their long-held position on the legality of bump stocks is not the “best” interpretation of the underlying statute
  • A bump stock does not enable semi-automatic rifles to fire multiple rounds by a single trigger pull
  • Attaching a bump stock to a semi-automatic rifle does not make it a machinegun
  • The ATF’s new interpretation conflicts with the Second Amendment, because previous Supreme Court precedent has confirmed that the Second Amendment protects not just operable weapons but also the ancillary equipment carried on the person that is useful for their operation

Erich Pratt, GOA’s Senior Vice President, issued the following statement:  

“This is just one of the numerous examples of the ATF weaponizing their authority to arbitrarily harass and criminalize law-abiding gun owners.  

“Gun Owners of America is proud to stand with our friend Michael Cargill and all bump stock owners who have come under fire with this ban. We hope SCOTUS will recognize that this action by the ATF has no basis in fact and directly contradicts the Second Amendment.” 

Aidan Johnston, GOA’s Director of Federal Affairs and a former bump stock owner, added: 

“Especially as a former bump stock owner, I’m thrilled that SCOTUS may finally overturn this ban. For an agency to unilaterally implement a ban on a previously legal and government-approved product, without Congress even changing the law, is both unconstitutional and frankly just bad policy making.” 

GOA spokesmen are available for interviews.  Gun Owners of America is a nonprofit grassroots lobbying organization dedicated to protecting the right to keep and bear arms without compromise. GOA represents over two million members and activists. For more information, visit GOA’s Press Center.