Because of the lengthy amount of time it takes for OMB to approve a new ATF Regulation Guide, ATF's comment period is just for show. ATF officials and the White House have (and never did) no interest in actually listening to or considering comments that are currently being submitted. The exemption for the ammunition in question has already been stripped out of the regulation handbook moving forward and "green-tip" has been reclassified as "armor piercing." The rules have been changed.This is, yet again, another violation of the Administrative Procedure Act of 1946. They are simply not allowed to change regulations without going through the process; it doesn't count if the rule is already published.
A review of the timeline:pdf link page 109).
January 2015: ATF published a new, OMB approved Regulation Guide stripping AR-15 "green-tip" from its armor piercing exemption list.
February 2015: ATF proposes a ban (which they've already put in place through their handbook published in January) on AR-15 "green-tip" ammunition and opens up a comment period.
March 16, 2015: The comment period about the proposed/already implemented ban on AR-15 "green-tip" ammunition closes, ATF ignores tens-of-thousands of comments because they were never going to consider them in the first place, and continues with the regulations outlined in the new 2014 Regulation Guide.
Offered as a thought experiment: since the round is identified by its green tip, couldn't it be camouflaged by dipping every round in another color paint? (Don't use black - that actually is armor piercing). How about red, like M196 tracer rounds? Or pink - like nothing?
Last night, Mrs Graybeard and I were talking about current situations. I was saying the administration has gone into full court press or two minute drill mode. They are going to flood ruling after ruling, completely ignoring the constitution, completely ignoring the legality of what they're doing and completely ignoring anyone attempting to stop them. They've shown over and over that if they're even confronted they will stonewall, delay, and stonewall some more. Did anyone in BATFE ever get in trouble for Fast and Furious? Did anyone at State get in trouble for Benghazi? Has anyone at Treasury even gotten talked to about stealing $3 Billion? By the time they're stopped, if they're ever stopped, the damage will have been done. On Wednesday, No Lawyers, Only Guns and Money posted about a "sternly worded letter" sent by 238 congressmen to BATFE over the M855/SS109 ban. Do you honestly think a letter, a court ruling, or anything short of being arrested and physically confined will stop these guys?
Just think: two months down, 46 to go. As WRSA says, "here we are; imagine where we'll be".