This would be something if Hillary was to goad the administration into this with said administration rightfully dubious of same in recent years prior.
There’s not any efficacy to be gained here, not within the ‘loophole’ nor with what they do to the administrative threshold.
Ya know, I am predictable but I do have expertise and I’m not (I think) terribly hyperbolic. So believe me if you can, I think its proper to understand that most gun acquisitions are retail and thus already getting background checked. The correct figure would be north of 90% I’d bet. The rest of the transactions, the ‘loophole’ ones, are going on within the gun guy avocational / social milieu. This milieu is enormously difficult for psychotic misanthropes, jihadists, and gangbangers to penetrate such that they can acquire weapons. That’s because the milieu is (properly) paranoid and insular, and non-members almost universally don’t have the social skills to transact within it. And, it’s one thing for me to say that as just some guy but it’s consistent that these mass shooters have all bought retail and I’m giving you the circumstances / attributes that make it thus. Cuz I’m an expert.
But whatever…. What they can do administratively, such that they think it’s worth something, is modify the threshold analysis for how many private transactions in a year makes one ‘in the business’ of dealing firearms, and thus responsible to conduct background checks.
The current threshold analysis might be described as ‘qualitative’ rather than ‘quantitative’. There’s not a hard number of transactions that makes you a dealer, it’s more a judgement of whether you are conducting a commercial enterprise. And this basically allows for someone to liquidate grandpa’s gun collection and do their avocational trading through the year in amounts that might number dozens of guns, and they would not have to get an FFL. But with that, the ATF can still send a cease and desist letter or haul someone into court who is observed to be playing fast and loose / abusing the spirit of the law. That’s the way it is.
So you change the threshold analysis, maybe make a hard number…. say you make it 25….you’re not actually creating more circumstances for background checks. You’re just maybe influencing the behavior of people who at times resemble dealer enterprises in their number of annual transactions. And at that point, maybe because of the new guidelines they get an FFL and do the checks, but whats more likely is they give slightly more attention and thought to the amount of transactions they do each year such that they have a credible explanation in the event of a BATF interview…. which are rare in the first place because this intramural avocational dealing is both benign and untraceable.
So there’s no efficacy. None. It’s a nothing burger.
But whatever, this is not about efficacy, right?. It’s about the ratcheting down where you can for sake of a ‘ratchet effect’, moving the Overton window generally, and also appealing to know-nothings within a particular political coalition. That’s fine, but you do this administratively and I think you diminish your ability to enact quality legislation later, such that you’ve ‘done something’ here and it doesn’t work.
So go right ahead, executive authority baby.