So Barack Hussein Obama broke the law again. On Jan. 4, Obama rewrote the nation’s laws on gun sales and purchases and background checks for firearms purchasers. Obama issued executive actions directed to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) to change how ATF interprets existing laws. Since ATF enforces those laws, the new interpretation will be treated as being the new, actual law.
Obama taught constitutional law as an instructor (not a professor). What we don’t know is which nation’s constitution Obama was actually teaching at the University of Chicago law school. It does not appear that it was the United States Constitution he has ever read. Perhaps it was the so-called constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, where guns are banned under its vicious anti-Christian and anti-Semitic dictatorship.
When Freedom Watch filed a legal challenge to Obama’s similar executive action grant of amnesty to illegal aliens, I stood before the trial judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia and explained to Judge Beryl Howell that this is not only about illegal immigration. I said then, over one year ago, that this is about the rule of law and the Constitution. I warned in December 2014 that such abuses of the Constitution are going to expand. And ironically, today as I write this, Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court is in conference over whether to take up that case on “appeal.” We expect to hear an announcement no later than early next week.
Under current laws as Congress passed them, a dealer in the business of buying and selling guns must register and become licensed. But someone who is not earning a livelihood or engaging in a for-profit business to trade in guns does not need to get a license or register. A collector (such as antique guns), hobbyist, or private citizen just buying or selling a gun is exempt from licensing. (There is no gun show exemption. A dealer has the same requirements whether in his or her store or as an exhibitor in a gun show.)
But now President Obama has ordered the ATF to change how it interprets these laws. Now, a “dealer” can effectively be anyone who buys and sells guns even if it is not their business or livelihood. Someone who buys or sells just one gun might be treated as a dealer.
Worse, the factors that will be considered are subjective and vague. That means that a person cannot know for sure if he is violating the law or not (if he has to be licensed and conduct background checks). A law is typically struck down as “void for vagueness” if it leaves people unsure whether their conduct will be illegal or legal.
A dealer must perform a background check of a would-be purchaser, if they are licensed or should have gotten a license. But Obama, by effectively changing the definition of who is a “dealer,” is now requiring almost anyone to get a license and perform background checks, even if…