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Friday, June 13, 2003

As we reported in last week`s Alert (Vol. 10, No. 23), on Wednesday, a hearing was held on Alabama Attorney General Bill Pryor`s (R) nomination for a federal judgeship on the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. In one particularly interesting exchange, Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) asked General Pryor, "Are you a member of the National Rifle Association or its Board of Directors?" Pryor responded that he is indeed a member, but not an NRA Director. Senator Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) followed Durbin by piling on General Pryor for his filing of an amicus brief in U.S. v. Emerson. In that case, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals declared the right to bear arms has always been, and was always considered, an individually held right.

Anti-gun litmus tests have no place in judicial nominations, and the fact that a nominee happens to be a member of NRA should not be viewed by any objective Senator as a disqualifer. In fact, defending the Bill of Rights, including the Second Amendment, is something every judge should do and is sworn to do by taking an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States. Please continue to contact your U.S. Senators to encourage them to support Bill Pryor`s nomination. You can reach your U.S. Senators by calling (202) 224-3121, or you can use the "Write Your Representatives" tool at www.NRAILA.org for additional contact information.

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NRA ILA

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.