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Congress Back In Session

Tuesday, September 3, 2002

Congress returns next week from its Summer District Work Period, with the House and Senate both scheduled to reconvene on Tuesday, September 3. There is little time left for this Congress to take action on pro-gun reforms, so it is imperative that the pro-gun community makes its collective voice heard. There are currently two critical legislative issues that Congress needs to address—armed pilots (S. 2554/H.R. 4635) and reckless lawsuit preemption (S. 2268/H.R. 2037)—so please act immediately to ensure your lawmakers do everything possible to promote these bills.

H.R. 4635 is the House bill that seeks to establish a program to train all participating commercial airline pilots to use firearms as a last resort to defend the cabins of commercial aircraft from hijackers. This legislation passed the House by an overwhelming 310 - 113 vote on July 10. S. 2554, the Senate bill, must be acted on as soon as possible if it is to become law. Currently, 25 Senators are co-sponsors of this bill, so please call both your Senators and urge them to sign on as co-sponsors, ask for a vote on the bill, and support it in its current form when it is brought up for consideration. If one or both of your Senators is already a co-sponsor of S. 2554, thank him for his support, and urge him to encourage his Senate colleagues to co-sponsor this legislation and support the bill’s passage.

Reckless lawsuit preemption legislation, which would block politically-motivated lawsuits that attempt to hold law-abiding gun makers liable for the criminal misuse of their products, needs to move through both chambers of Congress. The House version, H.R. 2037, has 228 co-sponsors, which represents a majority of U.S. Representatives. The Senate version, S. 2268, has 38 co-sponsors, which is a solid show of support. As with armed pilots legislation, however, time is rapidly running out for these bills. Please call both your U.S. Senators and your U.S. Representative and urge them to promote the passage of reckless lawsuit preemption legislation.

To contact your U.S. Representative, call (202) 225-3121, and to reach your U.S. Senators, call (202 224-3121. Just ask to speak with your particular lawmaker. Those on the Internet can also use our "Write Your Representatives" tool.

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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.