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President Bush Signs "Protection Of Lawful Commerce In Arms Act"

Friday, October 28, 2005

Landmark NRA Victory Now Law

On Wednesday, President George W. Bush signed into law the NRA-backed "Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act" (S. 397) to end politically motivated lawsuits designed to bankrupt law-abiding American firearm manufacturers and retailers.  S. 397 passed both chambers in Congress with broad bipartisan support.

"This is an historic day for freedom.  I would like to thank President Bush for signing the most significant piece of pro-gun legislation in twenty years into law.  History will show that this law helped save the American firearms industry from collapse under the burden of these ruinous and politically motivated lawsuits," said NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre.

In late July, the U.S. Senate approved the measure 65-31.  Last week, the U.S. House overwhelmingly passed the bill 283-144.  The new law is a monumental victory for NRA and its members.

"What we witness today is the culmination of a seven-year effort that included a comprehensive legislative and election strategy," stated NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox.  "We had to work hard to change the political landscape to allow for passage of this landmark legislation.  As always, our members were up to the task.  It was key electoral victories in 2000, 2002 and 2004 that helped pave the way for passage of this law.

"The Bush administration was a vital ally during debate on Capitol Hill.  I would also like to thank Senators Larry Craig (R-Idaho) and Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Congressmen Rick Boucher (D-Va.) and Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) for doing a yeoman's job as lead co-sponsors of this legislation.  In addition, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.), Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and Senate Republican Conference Chairman Rick Santorum (R-Penn.) ought to be commended for their steadfast leadership during Senate deliberations," added Cox.

In recent years, 33 states have passed similar legislation outlawing reckless lawsuits intended to bankrupt the gun industry.  However, this new law creates judicial uniformity in all courts across the United States.

"This law will help preserve the American firearms industry and also help preserve American manufacturing jobs.  American companies will cease to make products if they continue to be sued every time a violent criminal they do not know, have never met, and cannot control, misuses a legal, non-defective product.  This is a significant step toward saving millions of manufacturing jobs," concluded LaPierre.

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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.