The ATF, charged with policing the gun industry, lets dealers get away with falsifying records and selling firearms without background checks.
The programs, policies, and people driving positive change in America’s gun violence problem.
American lives, shaped by guns.
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How We Fix This
Lawmakers are clamoring for action on auto sears. History leaves clues about what approach the agency might take.
Citing an investigation by The Trace and USA TODAY, federal lawmakers are requesting more detailed data on the agency's efforts to inspect and discipline lawbreaking gun dealers.
An internal report urged the ATF to open up its exclusive contract. Instead the contract was renewed, and several ATF officials went to work for the contractor.
For more than a decade, agencies have flouted a state law requiring them to use a tool that policing experts say can help reduce gun violence.
David Chipman vowed to continue to advocate for effective gun regulation after he said the White House left him defenseless against a swirl of misinformation and personal attacks.
Chipman's nomination hinged on the decision of Senator Angus King, an independent from Maine. Without King's support, he lacked the votes.
Former agent David Chipman has faced a steady drumbeat of allegations since his nomination in April.
If adopted, the rule would require brace owners to apply to the NFA Division, which has long been understaffed and routinely misses its own performance benchmarks.
The Keeping Gun Dealers Honest Act, introduced by House Democrats, would make it easier for the ATF to shut down sellers who break federal regulations.
Fulfilling even basic FOIA requests can take months or years. Sometimes the agency ignores them altogether.
The White House’s multipronged strategy would require the bureau to revoke the licenses of gun dealers found breaking the law, and encourage cities to use pandemic relief funds for community-led violence intervention.
Following an investigation by The Trace and USA TODAY, lawmakers are urging the agency to take a tougher line on gun sellers who break federal regulations.
Some of the strictest federal penalties land on home-based sellers who fail to invest in sales tracking and security.
If confirmed, David Chipman will be in charge of reforming an agency that has repeatedly come under fire for going easy on gun sellers who break the law.
The Trace and USA TODAY’s database of nearly 2,000 ATF inspection reports is a useful tool for reporters, policymakers, and members of the public.