National Rifle Association (NRA) spokesman Chris Cox appeared Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” to blame bump stocks for the Las Vegas shooting, and to tell the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) to regulate bump stocks, even though ATF does not regulate bump the devices under U.S. law.
Bump stocks were attached to 12 of the Las Vegas shooter’s guns, which allowed him fire bullets as quickly as a machine gun.
Cox claimed to speak for the American people during his interview, notes Media Matters:
The American people are also looking for their Second Amendment, they’re looking for Congress to respect the Second Amendment. And that’s why we’re calling on Congress to do something, let ATF do their job, and Congress needs to do their job. Allow good, honest people the ability to defend themselves. Pass reforms like national right to carry reciprocity…
Here’s what the National Rifle Association said, and we need to look at the facts here. Barack Obama’s administration approved the sale of bump stocks and these other devices. What we’ve said is ATF needs to do their job. ATF needs to look and if there’s technology that’s come to the market that allow for a semi-automatic rifle to function as a fully automatic rifle, they need to be regulated differently. We didn’t talk about banning anything.
We talked about ATF going back and reviewing whether or not these are in compliance with federal law and if not, let’s look at working together and figuring out a way to address this moving forward. At the same time, Congress needs to do their job and make sure that they’re going with meaningful solutions to these underlying problems, including respecting the Second Amendment…
On these side issues, if ATF needs to look at something that functions as a fully automatic weapon, they’re the ones who approved it, they need to look at it.
Politifact notes that the ATF ruled twice that it could not regulate bump stocks during the Obama administration. These rulings allowed two companies to sell bump stocks, but were not the official policy of the Obama administration.