INDIANAPOLIS (May 3, 2015) – Last Wednesday, Indiana Governor Mike Pence signed a bill that “Repeals the prohibition against manufacturing, importing, selling, or possessing a sawed-off shotgun,” and represents the first step against federal prohibitions on the same.

Introduced by Sen. James Tomes (R-Wadesville), Sen. Brent Waltz (R-Greenwood) and Sen. Brent Steele (R-Bedford) along with 26 cosponsors, Senate Bill 433 (SB433) eliminates the portions of the Indiana criminal code restricting sawed-off shotguns. With the new law, the state of Indiana has taken important steps forward against the prohibition on these weapons – and manufacturing and commerce on the same.

It passed in the state Senate by a 44-6 vote on Feb. 3, and passed in the state House by a 85-14 vote on March 24. It was signed into law by Gov. Pence on April 29.

The law defines sawed-off shotguns as “a shotgun having one (1) or more barrels less than eighteen (18) inches in length and… any weapon made from a shotgun (whether by alteration, modification, or otherwise) if the weapon as modified has an overall length of less than twenty-six (26) inches.”

While some would claim that the federal government allows such firearms while Indiana did not, this is likely misunderstanding what is actually happening in practice.

“[A short barreled shotgun and rifle are considered] a title II firearm, which is highly regulated by the ATF. They are kept in a national registry. The transferring from one owner to another takes from six months to a year and there is a lot of paperwork and background checks by the ATF, FBI and sometimes Interpol. There is a $200 fee every time one changes possession,” Sen Tomes said.

In general, however, enforcement of federal restrictions or outright prohibition relies on participation between state and federal governments. With the new law, Indiana now authorizes what the federal government severely restricts, and this sets the stage for people to take things further.

The precedent has been set for nearly twenty years since California voters approved the compassionate use act in late 1995. By authorizing the people of that state to produce, transfer, possess, and consume something fully prohibited by the federal government, people were given the encouragement to act without further federal “permission.” Today, with nearly two dozen states allowing marijuana use and commerce in varying degrees, the federal government has been forced to back down since they lack the resources to overcome such overwhelming defiance.

While Indiana’s new law decriminalizing shotguns isn’t going to change the status quo on federal prohibition, it’s an important first step.  Will gun rights activists be willing to buy, sell or manufacture without federal permission as other activists have done with a plant?  Only time will tell.

Additional reporting by Shane Trejo

 


Concordia res parvae crescunt


Small things grow great by concord...

Tenth Amendment Center


"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."


FOLLOW US

Get in Touch

7 + 13 =


MAIL:
PO BOX 13458
Los Angeles, CA 90013


PHONE:
213.935.0553

The 10th Amendment

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

LEARN MORE

01

Featured Articles

On the Constitution, history, the founders, and analysis of current events.

featured articles

02

Tenther Blog and News

Nullification news, quick takes, history, interviews, podcasts and much more.

tenther blog

03

State of the Nullification Movement

108 pages. History, constitutionality, and application today.

get the report

01

Path to Liberty

Our flagship podcast. Michael Boldin on the constitution, history, and strategy for liberty today

path to liberty

02

maharrey minute

The title says it all. Mike Maharrey with a 1 minute take on issues under a 10th Amendment lens.

maharrey minute

Tenther Essentials

2-4 minute videos on key Constitutional issues – history, and application today

TENTHER ESSENTIALS

Join TAC, Support Liberty!

Nothing helps us get the job done more than the financial support of our members, from just $2/month!

JOIN TAC

01

The 10th Amendment

History, meaning, and purpose – the “Foundation of the Constitution.”

10th Amendment

03

Nullification

Get an overview of the principles, background, and application in history – and today.

nullification