Washington (AP) - The federal agency that monitors gun sales wants weapons dealers near the Mexican border to start reporting multiple sales of high-powered rifles, according to a notice published in the Federal Register.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has asked the White House budget office to approve an emergency request requiring border-area gun dealers to report the sales of two or more rifles to the same customer within a five-day period.
The emergency request, published Friday in the Federal Register, is likely to face stiff opposition from gun rights advocates, including the National Rifle Association. ATF wants the Office of Budget Management to approve the request by Jan. 5.
NRA officials did not immediately return a telephone message for comment Monday. Last week the group's chief lobbyist, Chris Cox, told the
High-powered rifles have become the weapon of choice for
Officials on both sides of the border have said weapons bought legally in the
ATF, which tracks weapons found in
Last month a Justice Department report on the agency's Operation Gunrunner criticized the program as being narrowly focused on individual gun buyers and not larger smuggling organizations believed responsible for significant numbers of guns being shipped across the border.
Currently there are no reporting requirements for rifles.
If approved by the White House, the new reporting requirement would affect nearly 8,500 border-area gun dealers in