John M. Snyder 

In a June 22 Guns & Patriots interview, the dean of Washington gun-rights advocates blamed  the Pres. Barack H. Obama for the Justice Department’s gun-running to Mexican drug cartels.

Although, agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were the ones who facilitated program that waved suspect gun sales and shipments to Mexican gangs, so the traced weapons could be used as proof for tighter gun regulations, the goes to the man at the top, said John M. Snyder, a founding leader of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Bear and Keep Arms.

“Let’s use the yardstick Obama himself used when he blamed bank and corporate CEOs for the recession. By that yardstick, Obama must take the blame for the ATF gun scandal,” he said.

The president is the country’s CEO, so he must take the hit, he said.

“The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform hearings on activities of the Justice Department and its ATF reveal the scandalous behavior of Obama’s government,” he said. “Now, though, it appears the Obama administration is about to dump certain ATF bureaucrats, blaming the whole scandal on them, and bring in others to dominant positions in ATF. This in an attempt to escape the possibility of being held responsible for the whole mess.”

Snyder, who started in Washington in the 1960s as a reporter for NRA publications, said the BATFE has been a flawed agency since 1968. In that year, the Treasury’s Alcohol and Tobacco Division was tasked with the enforcement of the Gun Control Act passed that year and renamed: Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. Later the agency was transferred from the Treasury Department to the Justice Department further complicating the agency’s culture and mission.

Dubbed the Gun Dean by the media because of his senior status in the capital, Snyder said it is common knowledge among law enforcement personnel that the BATFE agents are the least professional in federal service, making it more important for the strong leadership Obama did not provide.

“The American people will see through this scam. They will not let Obama and company get away with it. Just wait for the elections in only 17 months,” he said.

ATF is supposed to enforce federal firearms law, he said.

“This includes the law that prohibits straw purchases. It is against the law for an individual who has the legal right to purchase a gun to purchase the gun in order to turn it over to someone who is prohibited by law from purchasing the gun,” he said.

“A dealer cannot legally sell a gun to someone he or she knows is making a straw purchase. The vast majority of federally licensed firearm dealers comply scrupulously with the law. They even contact ATF if they suspect such a purchase,” he said.

“The hearings show that ATF has been allowing and perhaps encouraging straw purchases of thousands of guns,” he said. “These guns then wind up in the hands of criminal gangs, including Mexican drug cartels. ATF has been behaving in this way in a claimed attempt to follow the path of these guns. This path supposedly would lead to the higher ups in the drug cartels in an attempt to build criminal cases against drug kingpins.”

The Gun Dean said the hearings bring to light is that many of these guns have been used in crimes in Mexico and the United States, including murder, even the murder of U.S. law enforcement agents. “What you’ve got, then, is a Justice Department through its ATF aiding and abetting outrageous felonies.”

Snyder, who wrote the book “Gun Saint” about his campaign to make St. Gabriel Possenti the patron saint of handgunners, said gun grabbers in Congress and the media blame weak gun laws for criminal behavior, but blame for this government-sponsored crime operation belongs squarely with one man, the president.