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ATF Director Demotion Shows Who’s Really in Charge

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Submitted by The Machine Gun Nest (TMGN).,

How much control does the anti-gun lobby have over the ATF? From the looks of the most recent shakeup at ATF HQ, a lot. 

According to reports, the Biden administration has moved to demote Marvin Richardson. Richardson is the current acting director of ATF. The Biden admin intends to replace Mr. Richardson with Gary Restaino, the US Attorney from Arizona, until Biden's nominee to head the ATF, Steve Dettelbach, is confirmed.

Why the change in leadership? Well, the Biden administration has come under heavy criticism recently by gun control advocates in the New York Times and failed ATF director nominee David Chipman.

In a March 4th article, the New York Times blasted Marvin Richardson for being "too friendly" with the firearms industry. This statement should be ironic to gun owners or anyone who follows our reporting on ATF.

While the ATF isn't necessarily "friendly" to gun owners, Richardson has attempted to work with the firearms industry from his side of the fence. In 2022, ATF made an appearance at SHOT show, the largest expo for the firearms industry, and took questions from the National Shooting Sports Foundation on how the firearms industry and ATF can work together to stop burglaries of gun shops, among other things.

The New York Times used this interview to disparage Richardson, painting a picture of an agency under his leadership that is too friendly with the industry it's supposed to be regulating.

More recently, David Chipman was interviewed by Slate, where he criticized the ATF for having a "comfortable and cozy, non-confrontational, relationship with the gun industry." Chipman also took the time to criticize the senator who sunk his confirmation, Angus King of Maine. Apparently, according to Chipman, Sen. King said, "you have to also understand that I can't vote for you because you don't have the endorsement of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which is the lobby of the gun industry." No wonder Chipman has it out for the NSSF. 

It's very interesting that before Mr. Richardson's demotion, anti-gun groups, their allies in the media, and their key spokespeople all start to use the same talking points. John Feinblatt, the President of Everytown for Gun Safety (Michael Bloomberg's Anti-Gun group), was quoted saying, "ATF needs a top-to-bottom overhaul, that starts with the administration making sure the agency has the resources and leadership it needs to regulate an industry that has consistently prioritized profits over public safety."

But why would anti-gun groups want ATF not to work in conjunction with the industry it is tasked with regulating? Wouldn't that be comparable to asking the FAA not to work with Airlines? Federal Firearms License holders are not the ones out committing gun crimes or enabling them. In fact, in Richardson's interview with NSSF, he admits that much of ATF's best information to stop gun trafficking comes directly from FFLs.

Could it be that the goal of anti-gun groups is to get rid of guns entirely? The answer, of course, is yes.

This demotion announcement also follows President Biden's half-baked "Ghost Gun" Rule, which seemingly did not go as far as the anti-gun lobby wanted. This is partly due to the enormous outpouring of comments from law-abiding gun owners and average citizens on the federal register.

During Biden's speech announcing this ghost gun rule, the President called on Congress to enact more gun control legislation. Likely because the ghost gun rule has shown the limits of how far executive fiat, or as Biden likes to call it- "Regulatory Authority," can go without actual legislation to back it up.

It's obvious now that Mr. Richardson's demotion stems directly from the wishes of gun control advocates, who in turn have pressured the Biden Administration. But it also shows that those same people, David Chipman, Gabby Giffords, and others, are the ones seeking control over the ATF itself.

This pressure from gun control advocates is why Biden has nominated a no-name corporate lawyer, Steve Dettelbach, to head ATF and, in the meantime, has appointed Gary Restaino to fill in. Dettelbach serves as a milquetoast, unoffensive pick, meant only to get past the confirmation process, where he will lead the ATF however his handlers in the gun-control lobby wants. 

Speaking to FOX News, former CIA analyst Buck Sexton had this to say about the change at ATF: "What you see here is the Biden administration wants someone running the ATF who is going to give them the soundbites — talking points that they want to make it seem like they're taking action on crime in general, more specifically on gun control issues."

It's evident from the moves that the Biden administration has been making with ATF that they intend to weaponize the agency into taking a very adversarial stance against gun owners. This hostile stance is precisely what the anti-gun lobby has wanted for years and something they almost accomplished with the nomination of David Chipman to head the ATF.

Additionally, with 2022 being a midterm year, the Biden administration is looking for anything to raise their falling poll numbers. As we've reported previously, Biden and his allies in the corporate media have been waging a campaign on his lousy poll numbers, using topics like "ghost guns" and gun control as fodder as their inability to tackle any real issues affecting everyday Americans like soaring gas and food prices.

While it certainly looks like Steve Dettelbach will have an uphill battle towards confirmation, it is likely that with or without a permanent director of the ATF, the agency is being weaponized against the firearms industry and law-abiding gun owners.

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