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Georgia AppellateCourt Dumps Atlanta`s Reckless Suit

Friday, February 15, 2002

The Court of Appeals of Georgia unanimously rejected the City of Atlanta’s reckless lawsuit against the firearms industry, ruling not only that state law preempted the suit, but that Atlanta’s case had not "pointed to any instance of unlawful conduct by the gun manufacturers…."

Presiding Judge Gary Blaylock Andrews, who wrote the opinion, found that the regulation of firearms is properly an issue of statewide concern and that Atlanta’s suit sought "to punish conduct which the State, through its regulations and statutory scheme, expressly allows and licenses." In dismissing the case, Judge Andrews noted the "legislature’s clear directive that municipalities may not attempt to regulate the gun industry…" and that the city’s suit was an improper attempt to usurp that power from the legislature.

Lawrence G. Keane, vice president and general counsel for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the firearms industry’s major trade association, commented, "Every appellate court to decide a municipal suit against the firearms industry has ruled in our favor. We urge those mayors that have sued our industry to redirect their priorities and to emphasize cooperation with our industry rather than confrontation."

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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.