NRA Explore

The Truth About "Mayors Against Illegal Guns"

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Michael Bloomberg of New York City and Thomas Menino of Boston, two of the most virulently anti-gun politicians in America, founded “Mayors Against Illegal Guns” (MAIG) in 2006. Despite the claims of some, they are still the driving force behind the group. But do not be fooled by the name: This organization would be better named "Mayors Against All Guns."

A look at MAIG's agenda shows that fighting criminals is not what they are really about.

Targeting Law Enforcement Data
From its inception, one of MAIG’s top priorities has been eliminating the Tiahrt amendment, which protects law enforcement safety and the privacy of gun owners and stops the improper use of sensitive gun trace data in civil lawsuits.  MAIG claims it opposes Tiahrt because the amendment ties the hands of law enforcement to investigate illegal gun sales, but that is a false smokescreen.  Tiahrt does not prevent law enforcement from using firearms trace data in criminal investigations. What Tiahrt does prevent is data abuse in lawsuits such as the ones brought by cities like New York, Boston and Chicago, whose mayors are all part of MAIG. Click here for more information on the Tiahrt amendment.

Targeting Gun Shows
MAIG supports new restrictions and regulations on gun shows that could drive them out of existence. Federal law allows law-abiding persons to sell a firearm to another law-abiding resident from their state. The effort to restrict these sales at gun shows is a veiled first step to outlawing all private transfers between law-abiding people, whether they occur at a gun show or simply between family and friends. Click here for more information on gun shows.

Denying Rights By Secret Information
MAIG has strongly pushed for legislation to prohibit any person listed on the secret “terror watch list” from buying a firearm. This is a serious threat to Second Amendment rights. The “terror watch list”--which now reportedly includes the names of more than one million people--has secret standards for placing a name on the list and no clear mechanism for removing a name from the list. In almost all cases, a person has no idea he or she is included on the list. Click here for more information on the "terror watch list."

Opposing Self-Defense For Travelers
MAIG has opposed the right to self-defense for law-abiding citizens by opposing interstate reciprocity for concealed carry permit holders. There is nothing about this issue that deals with “illegal” guns.  MAIG’s opposition to the rights of law-abiding carry permit holders--persons who have submitted to additional training and background checks--proves that MAIG is not targeting “illegal guns”, but is simply opposed to law-abiding people carrying firearms for self-defense, currently allowed in 48 states. Click here for more information on Right-to-Carry reciprocity.

Targeting Legal Transport of FirearmsMAIG has announced opposition to an amendment, sponsored by Senator Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), which would require Amtrak to accept firearms in checked baggage as commercial airlines do. The amendment passed the Senate by the overwhelming margin of 68-30. Even the Brady Campaign announced it would not oppose this amendment. No issue more clearly demonstrates that MAIG’s real opposition is to all firearms, not simply "illegal" guns. Click here for more information on the Wicker amendment.

Opposing Important BATFE Reform
MAIG has fought against bills to reform Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) operations. These bills are designed to protect the rights of federally licensed dealers and set standards for regulation and enforcement activities. Reforms are needed to end BATFE abuses and harassment of lawful firearms dealers, as well as to establish clear guidelines for violations and penalties and to create a fair appeals process. MAIG’s opposition to this legislation encourages the continued harassment of firearms dealers. Click here for more information on BATFE reform.

Targeting Legal, Not “Illegal” Guns
MAIG claims to be fighting only “illegal” guns, but its agenda does not include a single item that is directly aimed at criminals. Instead, its agenda is a direct attack on law-abiding gun owners and is designed to increase restrictions on those who exercise their Second Amendment rights. Click here for more information on MAIG and its agenda.

Please click here to see if your mayor is a member of this national gun control group. You may also click on the map above to determine if your mayor is a current or former MAIG member.


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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.