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Clinton Says He Has "Evidence" Of Illegality ... Where Are The Prosecutions?

Friday, April 7, 2000

Why didn`t Dan Rather ask the President why he hasn`t prosecuted alleged illegal dealers?
(WASHINGTON, DC) -- In an April 6 interview with CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather, President Bill Clinton alleged "evidence" of illegal activity among a small percentage of gun dealers, yet pointed to no arrests and prosecutions. Incredibly, Rather failed to ask the President how many of those alleged unlawful dealers had been prosecuted under tough existing federal laws. The answer is none. "Dan Rather demonstrated that he is either inept as a journalist or blatantly biased to cover up the President`s deplorable rhetoric and lack of enforcement of existing federal gun laws," said James Jay Baker, executive director of NRA`s Institute for Legislative Action. In the interview, Clinton stated, "... you can`t get out of the fact -- we now have evidence -- a very small percentage of gun dealers sell a very high percentage of the guns used in serious crimes." Clinton further accused that these unnamed dealers have "a criminal clientele, or otherwise just aren`t taking care of their business." Baker challeged news reporters to ask Clinton what Rather did not. "Where are the prosecutions of these allegedly unlawful dealers?" Baker asked. "The President is either not telling the truth, when he claims to have such `evidence` or he is tacitly admitting his lack of will to enforce tough existing laws against those who illegally sell firearms. I remain hopeful that, somewhere out there in America, there are truly professional journalists who will start asking that obvious question of the White House." Baker noted that, under current law supported by the NRA, it is a federal felony to transfer a gun to anyone who does not reside in the same state (5 years in prison per gun). It is a federal felony to transfer a firearm or ammunition to a convicted felon, fugitive from justice, or substance abuser (10 years in prison per gun). It is a federal felony to transfer a gun to any individual, knowing that it will be used to commit a violent crime (10 years in prison per gun). "That is just the tip of the iceberg of very tough, comprehensive laws against illegally transferring firearms," Baker said. "And the Clinton-Gore Adminstration, in Titanic proportions, has misled the American public in an effort to cover up its horrible lack of enforcement of those laws. And while Dan Rather permits that cover-up, the 3.5 million law-abiding members of the NRA will continue to demand full, tough enforcement of existing federal laws against violent criminals with guns."

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.