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U.S. Senate Votes to Uphold Second Amendment in Washington, D.C.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Fairfax, Va. – The United States Senate has voted, with overwhelming bipartisan support, to adopt an amendment offered by Senator John Ensign (R-NV) that seeks to protect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens in the District of Columbia. The amendment, attached to S.160, the D.C. Voting Rights Act, will repeal restrictive gun control laws passed by the District of Columbia’s (D.C.) city council after the landmark D.C. v. Heller Supreme Court decision. The vote margin was 62-36.

“Today’s vote brings us one step closer to restoring the Second Amendment freedom of law-abiding D.C. residents,” said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox. “It’s ludicrous that good people in our nation’s capital continue to be harassed as they try to defend themselves and their loved ones in their own homes. This vote reinforces the historic Heller ruling.”

After the Heller ruling, the D.C. city council passed a law requiring would-be gun owners to pay a registration fee, pass a 20-question multiple choice test, take a five-hour training course, undergo an invasive background check every six years, re-register any firearm every three years, and finally, submit all handguns for ballistics testing. Current D.C. law also bans an overwhelming majority of firearms commonly used for self-defense. This Ensign Amendment would also remedy that unjust practice.

“NRA would like to thank the lead sponsor, Sen. John Ensign for his efforts to reform D.C.’s gun laws and enable folks to protect their property and their loved ones,” concluded Cox. “It’s time for leaders in Washington to wake up to the fact that the Supreme Court decision is now the law of the land.”

-NRA-

Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. Four million members strong, NRA continues its mission to uphold Second Amendment rights and to advocate enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the military.

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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.