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Lawmakers Offer Legislation To Allow Importation Of M1s

Friday, February 18, 2011

In 2009, the Obama administration approved the importation and sale of collectible, American-made M1 Garand rifles and M1 carbines from South Korea. However, the administration reversed its decision in March of last year, deciding instead to prevent these rifles -- legal to make and purchase in the United States -- from entering the country.

As we reported last October, U.S. Senators and Representatives from both sides of the aisle urged Secretary of State Clinton to revisit her department’s decision.

Now, S. 381—the Collectible Firearms Protection Act—sponsored by U.S. Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.), and its House companion bill H.R. 615, sponsored U.S. Representative Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), seek to once again allow these American-made firearms to be re-imported and sold in the U.S.

NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox made the following statement in support of the legislation:  “The importation restrictions on M1 rifles and carbines was a defacto gun ban.  These firearms are sought after by gun collectors as they are a part of America’s history.  They are also commonly used for lawful purposes such as hunting, sports shooting and self defense.  On behalf of the tens of millions of law-abiding American gun owners, I would like to thank these legislators for their leadership in presenting a legislative fix to this backdoor gun ban.”

“This is a common sense bill that is designed to allow law-abiding Americans to own a piece of history,” said Tester, Chairman of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus. “This is a simple issue of making sure that a government bureaucracy doesn’t stand in the way of our Second Amendment rights.”

Under the bill, firearms that are lawfully possessed by a foreign government—and that are more than 50 years old and considered antiques or relics—may be re-imported to properly licensed groups and sold without written permission from the U.S. Departments of State or Defense.

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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.