Rep. Cassidy Offers Bill That Expands Definition of Antique Firearms


Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-Baton Rouge says he’ll introduce legislation to extend the definition of “antique firearms,” which can be sold without going through a federally licensed firearms dealer.

The action was praised by the National Rifle Association (NRA), the Louisiana Shooters Association and other gun rights groups.

Under Cassidy’s bill, the definition of an antique firearm is changed from one manufactured before 1898 to one manufactured before 1913.

“Changing the definition of an ‘Antique Firearm’ strengthens the Second Amendment and protects our right as citizens to bear arms,” Cassidy said Friday.

“By fixing a law that should have been updated years ago, Americans can collect and share these items that are an important part of our nation’s history. ” has reached out to two gun control advocacy groups to get their take on this legislation and will report their comments when they are offered.

The NRA, in a statement praised the legislation for addressing “an outdated definition in the law that needs improvement.”

So did Dan Zelenka, president of the Louisiana Shooters Association.

“There is a need to update legislation that was originally passed in 1968 that set a fixed date of 1898, when William McKinley was President of the United States, as the defining point for antique firearms,” he said. “There is a host of very desirable and collectable firearms that were manufactured after this date.”

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives interprets the original 1968 law, allowing sales of antique weapons made before 1898, as covering weapons that have not been “designed or redesigned for using rimfire or conventional centerfire fixed ammunition or, if it can use ammunition, it must be “no longer manufactured in the United States” and “not readily available in the ordinary channels of commercial trade.”

Cassidy is running for the U.S. Senate.

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