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The Ninth Circuit says that homemade machine guns are OK. Actually, they say congress can’t regulate them because it’s not commerce. Sweet.

Tennessee law states:

(a) A person commits an offense who intentionally or knowingly possesses, manufactures, transports, repairs or sells:

(3) A machine gun;

(b) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the person’s conduct:

(7) Involved acquisition or possession of a sawed-off shotgun, sawed-off rifle, machine gun or firearm silencer which is validly registered to the person under federal law in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Records. A person who acquires or possesses a firearm registered as required by this subdivision (b)(7) shall retain proof of registration.

Any lawyers out there care to take a gander?

My guess in terms of federal law is that as long as you purchase a receiver that is not milled and assemble it, you’re probably OK. As for Tennessee law, it seems the NFA was ruled invalid and thus not applicable. But there is no NFA to register it to. I’m stumped.

6 Responses to “Auto Sear Anyone?”

  1. Michael Says:

    As we all know and learned in elementary school, the powers of the federal government are limited to those expressly provided by the constitution. All others are delegated solely to the states. The commerce clause, which provided the basis for this decision, was seized upon by FDR’s courts to greatly expand the reach of the federal government . . . ie; everything relates to Commerce, hence the Feds get their fingers in it.

    Recently, in the last 15 years, that has started to reverse itself, and this is just the latest example. How does it affect Tennessee . . . It doesnt. The Commerce Clause doesnt apply to states. Only to Congress. Tennessee can still do whatever it wants, within the bounds of the Tennessee constitution

  2. Michael Says:

    I need to elaborate a bit more. The decision did not invalidate the NFA. If the gun was manufacturered in another state and crossed state lines, or if the gun were to be sold, then the Feds could and can step in. I’d even go one step further, and state that the feds could come back and outlaw the manufacture of this gun because the parts and tools you use were purchased in commerce.

    However, the statute at issue did not seek to regulate comercial activity, but rather dictate what was criminal and not criminal. Further, the status of it being a criminal activity had nothing to do with commerce. Hence, the feds had no jurisdiction. If the statute attempted to regulate the activity because of its commercial nature, then its ok

  3. Guy Montag Says:

    It is a step in the right direction, but I still prefer store-bought machine guns over anything that I can make in my garage.

  4. SayUncle Says:

    Thanks for the clarification.

  5. tgirsch Says:

    Insert “this is the 9th circuit, the dumbass liberal most-overturned Clinton court in the country” diatribe here. 😉

  6. Les Jones Says:

    Tom: I had the same thought. Usually anything in conjunction with the 9th gets a boilerplate about being the most overturned court from many bloggers (not you, Uncle). But when the court is inline with those same bloggers, it’s a whole ‘other story.