The AR-15 would be enshrined as the national gun of the U.S. in a bill recently introduced to Congress by Rep. Barry Moore (R-AL), who described it as a counterattack to gun control.
“If a specific firearm is synonymous with the term ‘Americana,’ then it would be the AR-15,” he said while announcing the bill at an Alabama gun shop this week. He said the bill would send an important “message that we will meet every attack on any of our constitutional rights.”
“Second Amendment rights are worth protecting and must not be infringed,” he said.
The full text of the bill is not yet available on Congress.gov, but its title says it would “declare an AR-15 style rifle chambered in a .223 Remington round or a 5.56x45mm NATO round to be the National Gun of the United States.”
The bill’s three Republican co-sponsors include Georgia Rep. Lauren Boebert and New York Rep. George Santos.
AR-15s and similar rifles are the most popular in the U.S., with more than 24.4 million in circulation, according to trade group data reported by The Reload. The rifles are often targets for gun control because they have been increasingly used in mass shootings over the last decade, as reported by USA Today.
After bringing forward the bill for the AR-15’s national recognition last week, Moore stopped at a gun shop in Troy, Alabama on Tuesday to make the case for its passage. He said the AR-15 has been “a cornerstone of American culture for over 60 years,” according to video taken at the event.
He said such recognition would serve as a safeguard against gun control legislation.
“The anti-Second Amendment group won’t stop until they take away all your firearms,” Moore said in a statement reported by Al.com. “One rule to remember: any government that would take away one right would take away them all.”