The administration official confirmed on Wednesday night that Chipman was selected to enforce gun laws while also respecting Second Amendment rights. Ghost guns have increasingly turned up at crime scenes and in recent years have been turning up more and more when federal agents are purchasing guns in undercover operations from gang members and other criminals.
Some states, like California, have enacted laws in recent years to require serial numbers be stamped on ghost guns. These laws authorise the courts and law enforcement to remove guns from people thought to be a risk to the community.
The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has said more than 30% of the illegal weapons it has confiscated in some areas of California are "ghost guns" but they are not now regulated as firearms that require background checks.
Biden has proposed $5 billion over the next eight years for "community violence interventions", a term that covers a range of programs created to deter violence using tools other than putting people in prison.
The ATF is now run by Acting Director Regina Lombardo.
The first steps of the Biden administration to address gun violence have prompted criticism from the National Rifle Association, which labeled the measures "extreme gun control actions". The president will nominate David Chipman to be the director of the agency. Chipman is a gun owner himself.
"I don't need to wait another minute, let alone an hour, to take common-sense steps that will save lives in the future", Biden said last month.