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President Trump Is No Friend to 3D Printed Plastic Guns, Says WH Press Secretary

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders touts President Trump's support for printed gun bans.

|||Oliver Contreras/UPI/NewscomOliver Contreras/UPI/NewscomWhite House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed on Wednesday that President Trump supports bans against 3D-printed plastic guns.

As Reason's Brian Doherty previously reported, Defense Distributed is "a collective that organizes, promotes, and distributes technologies to help home gun-makers." In early July, the Department of Justice (DOJ) reached a settlement with Defense Distributed in a long-running lawsuit based on government officials maintaining that the sharing of the gun-making files violated munitions export rules located in the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). Defense Distributed argued that the legal fight was a First Amendment issue, since what they wanted to distribute were computer software information already widely distributed in the public domain, not actual munitions.

On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Robert Lasnik ruled in favor of eight states that sued in opposition of the federal government's settlement with Defense Distributed. Lasnik issued a temporary restraining order against the website's ability to distribute the files on the basis of that states' "clear and reasonable fear that the proliferation of untraceable, undetectable weapons will enable convicted felons, domestic abusers, the mentally ill, and others who should not have access to firearms to acquire and use them."

During a Wednesday press conference, Sanders answered a question about the president's support of 3D printed plastic guns by saying that the DOJ made a deal without Trump's approval. Still, Trump approved of the 1988 legislation that banned such devices if they are untraceable by metal detectors.

"This administration supports the decades-old legislation already on the books that prohibit the wholly ownership of a plastic gun," she told reporters.

Trump previously tweeted that 3D printed plastic guns didn't "make much sense."

Following the court's Tuesday decision, Defense Distributed founder Cody Wilson announced that his website, DEFCAD.com, would go dark in compliance. Wilson removed the plans from the internet. Since that time, a mirror site from called CodeIsFreeSpeech.com appeared. Considering that the advocacy groups behind the new site were not listed as defendants in the suit, they are free from the ruling.

Bonus link: Watch Reason's February interview with Cody Wilson here.

Photo Credit: Oliver Contreras/UPI/Newscom

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  • Just Say'n||

    Garbage Trump. He has consistently shown that he's no friend to the 2nd Amendment- from supporting a ban on bump stocks to opposing 3D printing.

    We should all be lucky that his court picks are being managed by the Federalist Society and not him personally

  • SIV||

    The post doesn't say Trump opposes 3D printing, just the possession/use of plastic guns that can't be picked up by metal detectors. In other words Trump is supports the current law. IIRC, the anti-plastic gun hysteria was directed against polymer firearms and that no one back in the 1980s was actually making or selling an "all plastic gun". The NRA steered the ban towards something that didn't actually exist to protect the class of weapons that did.

  • Agammamon||

    am looking into 3-D Plastic Guns being sold to the public. Already spoke to NRA, doesn't seem to make much sense!
  • Dan S.||

    Since the whole point is that the guns were NOT "being sold to the public", but rather that the ability to make them (if you had a 3D printer) was being given away, for free, it just shows Trump is confused again, as usual.

  • Mark22||

    What makes you think he's confused? He needs to say something, he doesn't want to ban guns, so he says something generic and irrelevant.

  • spec24||

    Of course he's not against 3D printing! He's against 3D pringing of guns, which is the whole point!!!!!!!

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    May be this will cure Cody Wilson's TFS.

  • Yellow Tony||

    This guy must be loaded to have his very own tactical fury squad. I want to see his men fight the NEET squad.

  • Agammamon||

    The 'not in education, employment, or training' squad? Just toss a case of cheap beer their way and you've already won.

  • Happy Chandler||

    It's almost like the NRA has little interest in guns that aren't purchased from the industry that they lobby for.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    That's why so many gun owners are joining the 2nd Amendment foundation. Because the NRA didn't even support the Heller case.

  • JoeJoetheIdiotCircusBoy||

    I too like the 2nd Amendment foundation more than the NRA. However, its really easy to bitch and moan that the NRA didn't support Heller now that we know the outcome of the Heller case (which was far from conclusive leading up to the decision). I can understand why the NRA was leery of the case. What if it would have went the other way? The decision would have been devastating to gun rights.

  • SIV||

    If not for the NRA they wouldn't be (legal) gun owners.

  • Just Say'n||

    I love how you spout progressive talking points here like people are going to read what you said and really think. When, in fact, what you just said shows that you are very ignorant on this topic

  • Yellow Tony||

    When, in fact, what you just said shows that you are very ignorant on this topic
    You just described most people who post on the internet!
    Wowzers!

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    I can't tell if you're insulting Chandler Bing or Just Say'n, and I don't particularly care.

  • Yellow Tony||

    I'm insulating everybody, tiger.

  • Yellow Tony||

    ...with my asshole.

  • ThomasD||

    Right, because plastic somehow negates any benefits of economy of scale.

    Or, maybe the issue with truly all plastic guns is that, per existing Federal law, nobody can legally make or possess one.

    Happy would not be in favor of eliminating that law, so why is he upset with the NRA abiding by it?

  • Overt||

    I have really enjoyed the meltdown as seen on FB as people hyperventilate about this issue, only to see their attempts to look intelligent when someone points out that it has been easier and cheaper to manufacture a far more deadly device using metalworking tools that have been available to the general public for years.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Well, we are going to have to put a stop to that, aren't we?

  • Yellow Tony||

    You have been awarded five (5) Good Citizen Points.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Trump plays you Lefties like a fiddle.

    Gun topics cause Lefty outrage which distracts you from what he is doing to rollback the government that he can.

  • Yellow Tony||

    Supposed ladies and gentlemen, you may pick one (and only one) option:
    lc1789 is
    a) mad from TDS,
    b) a bot, or
    c) a parody account.
    Participating gives you the chance to win a free date with this sensual poster.*

    * Third base is the minimum; preferably we'd go for a Grand Slam. Condoms are optional. Chick-fil-A is required. Holding hands is negotiable.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    ...alt-universe me likes Chick-fil-A?

    My GOD the Libertarian Moment™ universe is FUCKED UP!

    Also I'm betting on him being mad from Trump Fellatio Syndrome, thank you very much.

  • Yellow Tony||

    You misunderstand this dimension's future me: the lucky participate who wins is given the opportunity to enjoy a night with lc1789--not me. I'm too busy with my gay midget circuses to physically hang out with you losers.

    Also I'm betting on him being mad from Trump Fellatio Syndrome, thank you very much.
    But that implies he doesn't exclusively want to suck Obama's salty chocolate balls and receive Hillary's black strap-on in his boy pussy.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    ...you understand the concept of exclusivity?

    YOU understand that concept?

    I call SHENANIGANS!

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    Also, it's a *periwinkle* strap-on. Much prettier.

  • Yellow Tony||

    I don't think Hillary would like to share Michelle Obama's strap-on.

  • Yellow Tony||

    Of course! I'm not a whore.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Silly rabbit, you doesnt have a strap on, she has a dick.

    She's been fucking America for decades.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    *she doesnt have a strap on

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Luckily we know that ylw Tony is a troll account.

  • Happy Chandler||

    I've been leaning toward him being the employee of the month at Concord Catering.

    As for the date with the poster, I'm picturing Farrah Fawcett tacked up on the wall.

  • Calidissident||

    LMAO

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Same troll goobers over and over.

  • Oli||

    That's no biggie for anyone, considering he generally can't do much (due to personal, well, limitations).

  • Agammamon||

    Uhm, Trump is *supporting* the Lefties on this gun topic. Not exactly rolling back the government.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Trump not enacting any gun control except the bump stock ban is certainly something.

    The media could bash Trump all day long for violating the 2nd Amendment and his direction to ban bump stocks. I would be right there with them.

    The media likes gun bans, so instead they lie and say that "groceries" was a gaffe.

  • Yellow Tony||

    This article's picture makes me think: what does Trump's skin feel like? Do you think it'd be gritty enough to sensitize a serial masturbator's penis?

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Lasnik issued a temporary restraining order against the website's ability to distribute the files on the basis of that states' "clear and reasonable fear that the proliferation of untraceable, undetectable weapons will enable convicted felons, domestic abusers, the mentally ill, and others who should not have access to firearms to acquire and use them."

    I'd once again like to point out that there are plenty of books on Amazon that show how to create weapons and explosives. There's no law against it that doesn't run smack into 1A, and that should apply in this case too.

  • Longtobefree||

    Convicted felons buy real firearms that will last more than a few rounds.
    And are a hell of a lot easier to conceal.
    You do know that the monster pistol they show is a small caliber single shot, tight?
    Just because a computer is involved does not make this a new thing. Punks (hoods, JDs, gangs) were making zip guns in the fifties.

  • Qsl||

    Guns only end up being a test case though. A gateway technology. Soon you will have unregistered marital aids (the much maligned Big Bertha Triplicate Dong) and mattress tags that dissolve in your hands out in the wild.

    While Wilson gets the brunt of the government's ire for for being audacious enough to be unrepentantly direct, it's not like you can put the genie back into the bottle. More designs will proliferate with or without him.

    What will be of greater concern is how the government will attempt to regulate 3d printing, especially for hobbyist use. While unregistered guns may be the prize, it's not like there is a significant difference between a firearm and a carburetor as far as 3d printing is concerned. That's billions of dollars in niche markets left on the table for fear of some reduced steps to firearm manufacture.

  • josh||

    I love it when judges use fear as grounds to prevent what is clearly constitutional. It's almost like they didn't go to law school.

  • Rockabilly||

    Too late now man.

    LOL!!!

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Keep pushing, gun nuts.

    The backlash against your absolutism, imposed by your betters, should be entertaining.

    I just hope the right to possess a reasonable firearm for self-defense in the home survives the snapback against gun nuttery.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Reasonable firearm ownership is already under attack. All this does is send a message to the anti-gun-nutters that they can't stop people from arming themselves, no matter how hard they try.

  • Flinch||

    So do you support or oppose an amendment securing a right to self defense? The 2nd is clearly all about the militia, and apparently the statists need some basic human rights spelled out for them in unyielding opposition to their mendacity, as they lurch to clip more off the edges of the umbrella providing citizens a means of defense by default for two centuries.

  • techgump||

    Name calling is a sign you lack an intelligent arguement. My 5 year old son does that.

    Self defense in the home? Lol. You have a natural right to self defense everywhere. Anyway, there's little less dangerous then disarming citizens in a world of armed Govts. You have no natural right to rule, let alone use guns to keep other peaceable people disarmed. That's hipocrisy at it's finest... and inevitably, a sound case for utmost resistance.

  • Rockabilly||

    Hey man, they're downloading the gun-making files in Chicago

    A protest is planned

    A change of plans for Thursday's Lake Shore Drive protest: 5 things to know

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/.....story.html

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    If you're protesting violence in Chicago, what exactly are you really protesting. Since no one is for violence, are you protesting the city of Chicago, which is totally on board with banning guns, or are you protesting places that haven't been social engineered into dangerous places full of gun crime because they didn't ban guns?

  • Flinch||

    Has the city finally choked on Rahm's line of BS? Could be interesting to watch.

  • ranrod||

    Trump has been a New York LEFTIST all of his life and is a phony backdoor gun grabber....
    Red Flag Laws Mean Red Flag Rising.. Trump Opens Door For Gun Confiscation In America
    Really? We are going to let the government tell us who is crazy? Folks, this is a HUGE step on the slippery slope toward totalitarianism. Allowing the government to decide who is mentally unfit to own a firearm without due process is patently Stalinesque.
    Face it: In the states that pass these "red flag" laws, police can confiscate the guns of anyone they want. Period. Constitutional due process is absolutely dead in those states. And if the federal government passes a national version of a "red flag" law, constitutional due process is dead in America. Disingenuous politicians, both Republican and Democrat, who pass these Orwellian backdoor gun control laws (which is exactly what "red flag" laws are all about) are only using Marxist-style incrementalism to further destroy the Second Amendment—along with the rest of our Constitution. Rightly are these tyrannical laws called "red flag" laws, because that is exactly what they are.

  • ranrod||

    It took the State of Florida all of one week after a Republican house, senate, and governor passed one of the most draconian gun control bills in U.S. history to begin implementing the so-called red flag portion of the law that allows law enforcement officers to confiscate the firearms of any individual "suspected" of suffering from mental illness.
    All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
    https://chuckbaldwinlive.com/ Articles/tabid/109/ID/3719/ Red-Flag-Laws-Mean-Red-Flag-Rising.aspx

  • Longtobefree||

    Well, sort of. There is actually a court and judge involved.
    Key passage
    (3) RISK PROTECTION ORDER HEARINGS AND ISSUANCE.—
    (a) Upon receipt of a petition, the court must order a hearing to be held no later than 14 days after the date of the order and must issue a notice of hearing to the respondent for the same.
    1. The clerk of the court shall cause a copy of the notice of hearing and petition to be forwarded on or before the next business day to the appropriate law enforcement agency for service upon the respondent as provided in subsection (5).
    More -
    The full Monty: (string it together to confound the squirrels and their damn length limits)
    http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm
    ?App_mode=Display_Statute_String=
    &URL=0700-0799/0790/Sections/0790.401.html

  • Longtobefree||

    Continued

    2. The court may, as provided in subsection (4), issue a temporary ex parte risk protection order pending the hearing ordered under this subsection. Such temporary ex parte order must be served concurrently with the notice of hearing and petition as provided in subsection (5).
    3. The court may conduct a hearing by telephone pursuant to a local court rule to reasonably accommodate a disability or exceptional circumstances. The court must receive assurances of the petitioner's identity before conducting a telephonic hearing.
    (b) Upon notice and a hearing on the matter, if the court finds by clear and convincing evidence that the respondent poses a significant danger of causing personal injury to himself or herself or others by having in his or her custody or control, or by purchasing, possessing, or receiving, a firearm or any ammunition, the court must issue a risk protection order for a period that it deems appropriate, up to and including but not exceeding 12 months.

  • Echospinner||

    plastic gun.

    I could put probably fire 1000 rounds through the commercial gun without a fail with quality ammunition.

    Why would I want a plastic gun?

    Ok publish the code but I do not see much market when I could buy so much at gander mountain down the road.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Because as the price of milling/3d printing comes down-- plus the advancement of materials used in said machines, we will eventually be printing quality 1911s in the garage.

    All this sound and fury is about the right to do so, and the right to download the plans to do so.

  • ThomasD||

    "we will eventually be printing quality 1911s in the garage."

    Milling? Yes.

    Printing? No, practically and economically speaking that will never really happen. Mainly because the sintered metal used for the printing would then need fused and heat treating in a very sophisticated - and very expensive - oven. Then followed with a fair amount of micro milling and finish work. And that's assuming you are talking about the frame and slide - forget about printing a barrel that can be routinely subjected to 20,000 psi.

  • ThomasD||

    ...would then need to be fused and heat treated...

  • ThomasD||

    Also, consider that the operating pressure of a .45 acp (21,000 psi) is relatively low compared to other pistol rounds. 9mm and .40 S&W run over 50% higher.

  • TxJack 112||

    Exactly. Whether the units used to measure pressure is CUP or PSI, both are high enough that only a fool would risk shooting a true plastic gun.

  • ThomasD||

    I don't know about that. But I'd consider any plastic gun to be a single shot disposable for multiple reasons - not the least of which is the difficulty of extracting spent casings that have fused themselves to the chamber.

    I've made .22 LR 'experiments' using MDF and found that if you pre-char the chamber they can be fired a few times (lubed lead bullets are preferable to jacketed rounds.) MDF also has the benefit of failing rather gracefully and harmlessly. At least with low power rounds. I'd never try those same tricks with any bottleneck cartridge.

  • TxJack 112||

    A 3D printer for metal costs about $500K. Why would you make aplastic gun when you can purchase a tested and safe firearm for less than $500?

  • Nardz||

    So Trump favors not passing any new laws or regulations, and says plastic guns are a silly idea.
    Don't see much to object to here

  • ThomasD||

    Your lack of pants shitting freakout is duly noted.

  • Agammamon||

    I wonder what its going to be like when you can have a gunshop 3d print a gun for you while you wait.

  • Flinch||

    I get a kick out of the pretzel some bureaucrats have tied themselves into - new technology always makes them apoplectic, as an unregulated market just smells of freedom [which they have an apparent allergy to]. Export rules? Well, the barn door to the patent office has been open for decades as the Chinese helped themselves to every detail possible; from lasers to airplane engines, they did not skip firearm technology I'm sure. But what we are talking about is a just math map - you can purchase a working firearm, run a series of probe measurements [touch or laser] and arrive at the same information. And who cares about manufacturing method? Traditional machining takes stock and removes material, whereas a 3D printer adds it. Milling machines are everywhere, in every country. Soon, 3D printers will be as well. It's just over - and a firearm blueprint is no big deal in an age of nuclear weapons.

  • TxJack 112||

    you can buy jigs to mill 80% lowers and all you need is a drill press. It cost way less to do this and what you have is 1000x safer than 3D printing a plastic gun. In my point of view, this gun is like picture discs which were supposed to replace videotape back in the 1980s. Sounds great when you hear the concept but in the end it is just a novelty that no one will ever actually use because the already proven technology is better and cheaper.

  • David Emami||

    He's an east-coaster. Even among actual rather than nominal Republicans, I expect such folks to be anti-gun. See: Rudi Guilliani, Chris Christie, Michael Bloomberg, and many others.

  • Tony||

    A compromise: Trump approves of homemade guns but gives the gun industry a $12 billion bailout.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    You forgot to subtract tariffs and taxes and regulation and ObamaCare.

  • Tony||

    You forgot to get Trump's orange cock out of your mouth.

  • josh||

    So, this is what we're afraid about this week....

  • Pat001||

    The press desperately wants to report on any crime committed with a 3D gun or anyone who gets shot with a printed gun. My guess is none will be found. What they will find is some jerk reporter who lost an eye or a finger trying to demonstrate the danger posed by 3D plastic guns. Printed guns are dangerous - to the shooter, not the intended target.

  • TxJack 112||

    Can new all step back and get a grip here? First, the so called plastic gun that you can print is a single shot firearm that disintegrates quickly. Second, only an idiot would risk their life and limb by firing such a firearm since even a low power 9mm load (5.3 gns for a 115gn bullet) creates internal pressure of 23,100 PSI. (I load my own ammo and look at load data). That type of pressure makes shooting a true plastic gun not only dangerous but flat out stupid. Just because something is possible, does not mean it is feasible. There are production super cars capable of reaching speeds over 200 mph but where can you actually drive that fast and not risk being killed? Do most normal people have the nerve to drive a car that fast? Same thing with shooting a plastic gun. Lastly, a 3D printer that makes metal items accurately costs over $500K. Who is going to spend $500k to make a gun they can buy for $200-500?

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