New Legislation Would Remove SBRs from NFA

(Photo: Rob Garrett/GunsAmerica)

This week a Kansas Republican introduced a bill that would no longer make short-barreled rifles subject to the restrictions of the National Firearms Act.

Under the NFA prospective purchasers of an SBR, defined as a rifle with a barrel length fewer than 16 inches or a rifle with an overall length under 26 inches, need to fill out paperwork, submit photographs, get fingerprinted and pay a $200 fee (tax stamp) to the government.   

The Home Defense and Competitive Shooting Act (H.R. 5289) would remove all that red tape for SBRs and, in the process, streamline ATF processing times for other NFA items.  Current wait times for NFA items, including suppressors, can exceed 12 months, as GunsAmerica recently noted in an “Exclusive: ATF Kills Controversial Program that Fast-Tracked Applications for NFA Items.”

“Opponents of the Second Amendment want to use bureaucracy and regulations to obstruct citizens attempting to exercise their God-given right to keep and bear arms. The firearms addressed in this bill are commonly used for hunting, personal defense, and competitive shooting,” said Congressman Dr. Marshall, the bill’s sponsor in a press release obtained by GunsAmerica. 

“Since I came to Congress, I have fought tooth and nail to stop attempts that would strip our Constitutional right to keep and bear arms,” he continued. “This bill will eliminate regulations designed not to protect Americans, but to deny them their Constitutional rights.”

SEE ALSO: Virginia Congresswoman Proposes Bill Empowering Credit Card Companies to Track, Report Gun Purchases

If the Home Defense and Competitive Shooting Act were to become law, buying an SBR would be no different than purchasing a conventional rifle.  

“On behalf of the NRA’s five million members, I thank Dr. Marshall for introducing necessary legislation that will restore Constitutional rights to law-abiding Americans to choose which firearms best suit their needs,” said Jason Ouimet, executive director, National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action. 

“It’s time Congress eliminates costly and unnecessary government regulations on short-barreled rifles, which are used in sport shooting, hunting, and are especially popular with women gun owners for self-defense,” he added.

Pro-gunners will obviously wonder why the bill singles out SBRs for special dispensation.  In other words, why not just repeal the NFA altogether?  

The answer is, maybe, that it’s more politically feasible to do it piecemeal than all at once.  Suppressors, on one bill (e.g. the Hearing Protection Act), SBRs on another (e.g. Home Defense and Competitive Shooting Act) and hopefully short-barreled shotguns, too, down the line.  

Remember, the NFA covers a wide variety of items, including “destructive devices” and “machineguns.”  No doubt that anti-gunners would pounce on these two, in particular, to stoke up fears and concerns, as baseless as they may be, in an effort to thwart a total nullification of the antiquated and unconstitutional law. 

With that said, it’s not like pro-gunners haven’t tried over the years to move the needle. In 2017, a petition was started on WhiteHouse.gov to “Repeal the NFA.”  The petition needed 100,000 signatures within 30 days to get a response from the Trump administration.  It reached that threshold within six days and by the end of the month, there was a total of 308,272 signatures.

But, it doesn’t appear that anyone from the Trump administration responded.  And, that was at a time when there was a GOP-majority in both the House and the Senate. Humph!

The Home Defense and Competitive Shooting Act is now headed to the House Committee on Ways and Means and the Committee on the Judiciary.  Democrats run both.  Keep your fingers crossed.  

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About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 21 comments… add one }
  • BULLZEYEBANGER December 7, 2019, 9:43 pm

    SBR’s to me are only “TACTICOOL”, I’d rather a 16″ Barrel. SBR’s are LOUD and not as Accurate as a Civilian Carbine. Then again, maybe they should allow the Military 14 1/2″ barrel for sale in the civilian market, that one is OK in my book, anything shorter I just dont have a liking for in a rifle.

    • Mike December 10, 2019, 11:24 pm

      In a home defense rifle an SBR is better than a normal size for numerous reasons. Your standard rifle will be 33″ with a collapsed stock, if you are trying to gather family members into a safe room, feel free to measure what interior door frames are ( hint it’s 30″ ) so my sbr being under 30″ has a way better chance of not getting caught on the door frame.
      My 8″ barrel on a .300AAC gives me 100yd accuracy similar to a 30/30 rifle. How long are your hallways? How long are distances in real life shootings, a high percentage are under 100yds right?
      The muzzle device on my SBR will make my gun more pleasant to shoot indoors than your 16″ barrel gun.
      So there are 3 reasons off the top of my head that you are mistaken. There are many more once you talk about outside home defense, but we won’t waste time with that today.

  • Ted December 6, 2019, 6:18 pm

    The SBR is completely outdated and useless since AR type and other type of pistols with the sig brace have been available ! It IS essentially a SBR, only labeled as a pistol. It should be done away with .

    • Mike December 10, 2019, 11:30 pm

      Some people said full auto guns were completely outdated because bump stocks replaced them.

      The ATF has changed their mind on braces at least 3 times that I know of, so don’t think for a minute that when the next liberal group is in charge that they won’t just “go away” like bump stocks did.

      Your “arm brace” is a pen stroke away from being a bump stock, so watch what you want “done away with”.

  • Leighton Cavendish December 6, 2019, 4:41 pm

    Next up…mufflers removed?
    I’d settle for streamlined process…1 year+ is ridiculous wait time.

  • The Millionth Counsel December 6, 2019, 3:17 pm

    I’m sure AOC and Omar are co sponsors.

  • Robert Mccallum December 6, 2019, 3:10 pm

    Congress as a whole is a joke anymore. All they do is run their mouth but do absolutely nothing. Republicans controlled the house and senate when Trump took office as everybody knows. They could’ve passed bill after bill, yet did nothing !! They should all be fired and start over with term limits

  • YAHOO Charles A Valenzuela December 6, 2019, 9:03 am

    Yeah, 2d Amendment virtue signaling at its finest. Where were these guys and their bills when Republicans controlled both houses of congress and the white house? NOWHERE. Doing NOTHING. This has a snowball’s chance in hell to go anyplace in the democrat controlled house. Remember the hearing protection act? What happened to that? Did it even come to a vote? NO. More worthless hot-air do-nothing compromising crap. Don’t even bother to read the article. Don’t even bother to remember this Congressman’s name. This has as much chance as a bill declaring President Trump a canonized saint, or sending Hillary and a bunch of other democrat criminals to jail.

  • Jack December 6, 2019, 8:10 am

    This bill is going nowhere and the sponsor of the bill knows it. But, he can say, “at least I tried.”

  • Robert Frasconi December 6, 2019, 6:44 am

    There is no better tool for home/self-defense than a suppressed rifle with a short barrel.

    A suppressed rifle with a short barrel has many advantages. It is more wieldy; it is lighter; it’s report is not as loud.

    Unconstitutional edicts from the District of Criminals have made Americans less safe and more vulnerable.

    Look at the Frankenguns regulations have produced. An AR-15-type pistol used for home defense deprives one of a stock and is a much more challenging firearm to shoot accurately than is a firearm with a stock. This inaccuracy needlessly endangers innocent lives. One may use a brace on a pistol; however, would shouldering that brace in A self-defense situation be A crime?

    Likewise, a Mosseberg or Remington shotgun with merely a knob for a handle (rather than a proper stock) is a much more challenging firearm to use in a self-defense situation, especially for those not as physically strong as others.

    Unsuppressed firearms may harm hearing, especially in enclosed areas like the home.

    It is high time we took our inherent right to self-preservation back from those tyrants who have stolen it.

  • Big Jim December 6, 2019, 6:38 am

    Repukelikans & demorats, its all a show. Wasting tax dollars and padding their own pockets.
    When is it going to happen is the question?

  • Robert Frasconi December 6, 2019, 6:20 am

    The Free and Independent States must throw off this unconstitutional tyranny by state nullification of unconstitutional edicts from Washington, District of Criminals.

  • Robert Frasconi December 6, 2019, 6:15 am

    President Trump’s actions/inaction on 2A issues does not match Candidate Trump’s grandiose rhetoric.

    President Trump banned bump stocks by Trumptatorial edict hereby setting a terrible, unconstitutional precedent.

    President Trump has advocated to take guns first, and worry about due process later, even as he cries for due process himself in the impeachment inquiry.

    President Trump is anti-2A, period.

    • CZ 52 December 6, 2019, 9:14 am

      I have have been saying this for a long time. The NRA told me the BumpStock ban was the best outcome, as there was talk of a semi-auto ban being run through Congress. I called em up and asked!!

      My position? They never could have ran a Semi-Auto ban through both the House n Senate, with an “A” and “A+” NRA ranking Republican Majority in both Bodies.

      This was a backbend by the NRA to try to make people believe they had endorsed the correct candidate, quicker than they ever endorsed anyone in the past.

      As for the trampling of Due Process Trump advocates, why would one portion of our constitution be more important to him, or the NRA, than any other???

    • Rob August 12, 2020, 1:42 pm

      He is not

  • Michael December 5, 2019, 2:21 pm

    This guy was elected in 2016. Why didn’t he and the other Republicans that controlled the House, the Senate, and the Presidency during 2017 – 2018 fix the NFA during that period? Instead he waits until the Democrats control the House to make this proposal when he knows there is no chance in hell that it will ever get out of the House. Republicans talk a good game about defending the 2nd Amendment but they never really do anything.

    • Jack December 5, 2019, 11:21 pm

      The GOP is all talk! They better start producing and passing some pro-gun bills, like this one or they can forget my vote.

      • David December 6, 2019, 9:27 am

        While I agree that all politicians talk more and do less, but you think Elizabeth Warren would be better for our cause? There are desires and then there is reality. Without Trump we would be far worse off. Hastening the end is one strategy but I would prefer we not go down that road right now.

      • Dav December 6, 2019, 10:02 am

        Nice sentiment, but they can’t pass it or any pro-gun bills. They squandered 2 years with infighting because they didn’t like Trump, when they should have done the same thing Newt Gingrich did right after the election in 2016. They can’t get anything through the House at all even if the Senate wasn’t filled with RINOs that would never have voted for something like this to begin with even when they had a majority.

  • SuperG December 5, 2019, 10:25 am

    The thought that “our” government would give up fingerprinting its citizens and the associated fees is alien to me. Who would pay for the ATF’s Christmas party then?

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