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Rumor Alert: Appropriations Bill Blocks New Shotgun Ban—Does Not Repeal “Sporting Purposes” Test

Thursday, December 22, 2011

This year, NRA-ILA worked with pro-gun legislators to include a provision in the 2012 Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations legislation to help prohibit the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives from banning the importation of shotguns that are currently legally imported.  That legislation was a part of a consolidated appropriations bill that Congress passed to fund major portions of the federal government for the remainder of fiscal year 2012. 

Unfortunately, some inaccurate reports have claimed that this provision would repeal the “sporting purposes” test for importation of firearms. While NRA supports repeal of the “sporting purposes” test, the provision included in the recently enacted bill does not achieve this goal.

The provision supported by NRA-ILA was prompted by a recent BATFE “study” that sought to reinterpret the “sporting purposes” test in a manner that would have banned the import of certain shotguns that are currently legal to import. The new provision prevents, at least in the short term, the expansion of any shotgun bans under the “sporting purpose” language, thus preserving the status quo.

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NRA ILA

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.