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Montana Self-Defense Legislation to be Considered on Monday, February 9!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Please Contact Your State Representative Immediately!

The full House will consider House Bill 228 on Monday, February 9.  It is critical that Montana NRA members and law-abiding gun owners contact their State Representatives to voice their support for the bill with no further amendments. 

House Bill 228, sponsored by State Representative Krayton Kerns (R-58), is a broad piece of legislation that provides a number of specific protections for law-abiding citizens.  The provisions of HB 228 clarify and expand the fundamental right of self-defense and protect law abiding citizens from undue prosecution should they ever have to exercise the right.  HB 228, as amended by the House Judiciary Committee, still does the following:

  • Clarifies the ability of law-abiding citizens to carry a firearm in plain view and to display the firearm for harmless defensive purposes;
  • Allows a person who can lawfully possess a firearm and who doesn’t use it to commit a criminal offense to carry it concealed anywhere in the state without first obtaining governmental permission;
  • Prevents landlords and hotel operators from restricting law-abiding citizens’ self-defense rights;
  • Clarifies in statute the existing legal precedent that there is no duty to retreat from a threat before exercising the right to self-defense and allows a law-abiding citizen to use reasonable force in exercising the existing law that gives a private person the authority to arrest an offender;
  • Ensures that self-defense claims are adequately considered during incident investigations; and,
  • Shifts to the state, if self-defense is asserted by a defendant in a criminal case, the burden of proving an absence of justification. 

For a section-by-section analysis of HB 228 to help you better understand and communicate with legislators, please visit http://progunleaders.org/Self-defense/. 

Please contact your State Representative TODAY and respectfully urge them to support HB 228.  Please call (406) 444-4800 to leave a message for your legislators.  You may also use the “online message form” located at
here.  When contacting your State Representative, it is important that you be as respectful and courteous as possible.  Long, terse, rude, and disrespectful messages are counterproductive.

If you don’t know who your legislator is, please click
here.

Once you identify your legislator, you can find email contact information by clicking on his or her name at the following alphabetical listing of legislators: 
http://leg.mt.gov/css/Sessions/61st/roster.asp?HouseID=0&SessionID=94.

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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.