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D.C. Reckless Lawsuit Rejected

Friday, December 20, 2002

On Monday, December 16, D.C. Superior Court Justice Cheryl M. Long dismissed another reckless lawsuit-this one filed by the Washington, D.C., government and several crime victims, and supported by the gun-ban lobby-against several law-abiding gun manufacturers. In her decision, Justice Long indicated the case never stood a chance of passing legal muster, writing, "This is not a close question." She also said the case was "burdened with many layers of legal deficiencies," and that the D.C. government went beyond the scope of nuisance and other laws.

This decision comes only two weeks after Wilmington, Delaware`s own reckless lawsuit-also promoted by the gun-ban lobby-was thrown out of court. These politically-motivated lawsuits, designed to crush the firearms industry under the burden of frivolous litigation, are being consistently rejected by judges. NRA EVP Wayne LaPierre praised Justice Long`s ruling, calling it "a big victory for the integrity of our legal system." He went on to refer to these reckless lawsuits as "a flagrant abuse" of our judicial process.

Thirty-one states have responded to this "flagrant abuse" by passing laws prohibiting predatory lawsuits that attempt to hold law-abiding gun makers liable for the criminal misuse of their lawful products. Mississippi was the most recent to do so. At the federal level, NRA helped generate a tremendous amount of support in Congress for a national prohibition. Although we were able to secure a clear majority of bill co-sponsors in the House, and a near-majority in the Senate, Congress adjourned before final action could be taken. When the 108th Congress convenes in January, however, NRA will continue with its efforts to pass this critical reform.

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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.