Did White House Collude With Anti-Gun Groups in Glock Lawsuit?

AP Photo/Julie Jacobson

Back in March, the city of Chicago announced it was suing Glock; accusing the company of "willfully" designing and selling handguns that can be illegally modified through the use of a switch. Just a few days later, a group of 13 Democratic attorneys general sent Glock what amounts to a pre-litigation letter warning the company that more lawsuits were on the way. 


When I spoke to the National Shooting Sports Foundation's senior vice president and legal counsel Larry Keane about the lawsuit in late March, he called on Congress to investigate possible collusion between the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, Chicago officials, and gun control groups, noting that "the head of Everytown has been bragging and tweeting about this lawsuit and has essentially admitted... that the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, which is staffed by Rob Wilcox, the former top federal lobbyist for Everytown, tried to pressure and muscle Glock into changing the design of their pistol."

Keane's allegations have gotten the attention of the House Oversight Committee and its chairman Rep. Jim Comer (R-OH). Earlier today Comer announced he's sent a couple of demand letters of his own; one to ATF Director Steve Dettelbach and another to Stefanie Feldman, the director of the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, demanding more information on any conversations about the lawsuit between the White House and anti-gun groups. 

“The City of Chicago recently filed suit, in cooperation with Everytown Law, a pro-gun control organization, claiming Glock, Inc. has willfully sold pistols that can be converted into fully automatic weapons and is seeking financial damages as well as other punitive remedies.” wrote Chairman Comer. “The suit claims Glock has turned a blind eye to the alterations criminals make to many models of their pistol in violation of the National Firearms Act of 1934 and abetted these criminals by continuing to produce their pistols as is. By this logic, the government could accuse nearly any manufacturer of liability for illegal alteration or misuse of their products.”

The Oversight Committee has learned that the White House met privately with representatives from Glock, during which the Administration requested Glock change their pistol design with a focus on making it harder for auto-sears to be installed. On the very day the suit was filed, Everytown for Gun Safety President John Feinblatt tweeted “Federal officials recently contacted Glock to discuss implementing new ways to modify Glock pistols to make it harder for Glock switches to be installed. Rather than help, Glock falsely insisted there is nothing they can do.”

“Because this was a private meeting between Glock and the White House, Mr. Feinblatt seemed to have inside access to the White House meeting which raises questions about collusion with your Office. And rather than aggressively prosecuting criminals, government agencies are colluding with anti-gun interest groups to cripple a manufacturer who sells a legal product in a highly regulated sales market,” continued Chairman Comer.


In his letter to Feldman, Comer gave her two weeks to compile any and all "documents and communications between any individual at the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Everytown for Gun Safety, and Everytown Law related to 'auto sear(s)', 'Glock switches', 'machinegun conversion device' ('MCD'), and 'Chicago litigation'"

Comer specifically wants to see any documents and communications between Deputy Director of the White House Office for Gun Violence Prevention Rob Wilcox and Everytown for Gun Safety President John Feinblatt.

Dettelbach faces the same deadline from the House Oversight Committee, though the list of requested materials is a little different than what was given to Feldman. 

To assist the Committee with its investigation, please provide the following information, documents, and communications, covering the time period January 20, 2021 unless otherwise indicated, no later than June 28, 2024.

1. The number of firearms manufactured by Glock that have been approved for importationand sale to the civilian market that meet the definition of a machine gun under the NFA;

2. The number of firearms for which Glock has submitted a Form 6 which the ATF found tomeet the criteria of being a machine gun;

3. The number of prosecutions under the NFA of the illegal possession and/or use of Glockor other firearms equipped with auto sears;

4. The number of prosecutions under the NFA against manufacturers or importers of autosears;

5. All documents and communications between or among the ATF, the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention, Everytown for Gun Safety, Everytown Law, any State Attorneys General, officials of the City of Chicago, Corporation Counsel of the City of Chicago, City of Chicago Department of Law, Paul Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrision,LLP, which include the terms “Glock”, “auto sear(s)”, “Glock switches”, “machinegun conversion device” (“MCD”) or “Chicago litigation.”


If the White House really was relaying information about a private meeting between administration officials and Glock to Everytown with the express intent of giving the go-ahead on a lawsuit, then that would be a big f****** deal, as Joe Biden likes to say. If DOJ and ATF officials believe that Glock is doing something illegal then Attorney General Merrick Garland could have gone after the company himself. Instead, it sure looks like the Biden administration let the gun control lobby do the administration's dirty work for them while trying to maintain plausible deniability about any behind-the-scenes involvement in the development of the litigation. 

Merrick Garland has already been held in contempt of Congress for failing to turn over requester documents, and if Feldman and Dettelbach refuse to comply with Comer's request they could be the next administration officials to join the AG. I'm not holding my breath that Comer and the Oversight Committee are going to get the documents they've demanded by June 28th, but I do expect the committee to hold the pair accountable for their lack of action if they're not responsive to Comer's request. 

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