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Grassroots Alert: Vol. 9, No. 17 4/26/2002


Believe it or not, we are less than seven months out from this year’s critically important elections! With all that’s at stake for gun owners in this year’s contests, it is never too early to begin laying the foundation for a successful election year. Here are some activist tips all gun owners should follow beginning TODAY, and in the months leading up to the November 5 elections. For additional information on these activities, or suggestions regarding what else you can be doing to defend our freedoms this year, contact the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division at (800) 392-8683, or check out the "Take Action" section of NRAILA.org.


Register To Vote. Perhaps the simplest, yet most important action gun owners can take is to make sure they are properly registered to vote. Only currently registered voters are eligible to cast their vote in an election. Are you willing to let someone else decide who will speak for you in Congress or your state capital? Simply put, your vote is your voice. Use it or lose it! For your voter registration information and applications, or for information and applications you can share with your fellow Second Amendment supporters, contact the ILA Grassroots Division at (800) 392-8683 and visit the "Voter Information" section of NRAILA.org (where you can complete an on-line voter registration form). Gun shows, ranges, gun club meetings, and gun shops are great places to register pro-freedom voters. Remember, don’t stop once you are registered to vote yourself. Work with the pro-Second Amendment community in your area and help us register additional voters. Voter registration deadlines vary from state to state, but generally one must be registered to vote 30 days prior to a primary or the general election, so act now!

Contact your EVC. To ensure America’s gun owners are always heavily involved in the battle to protect freedom, NRA- ILA’s Election Volunteer Coordinators (EVCs) stand ready to answer the call. EVCs are individual NRA members in each congressional district who act as the liaison between pro-gun candidates and NRA members and gun owners in their districts. Their main job is to spearhead ILA’s volunteer activities to ensure pro-freedom candidates have sufficient volunteers for campaign-related activities, such as: phone banks, precinct walks, literature drops, voter registration drives, Get Out the Vote & Election Day activities, etc. EVCs are also involved in working with gun owners in their area to defend the Second Amendment in the legislative arena. The key to a successful EVC program, however, is a steady supply of volunteers to assist with the numerous activities that must be undertaken to preserve liberty for future generations, AND NRA-ILA’s EVCs NEED YOUR HELP! To identify your congressional district’s EVC call ILA Grassroots or click here. If your district currently has an EVC vacancy, and you wish to learn more about serving in this capacity, call ILA Grassroots.


Become an NRA-ILA Volunteer. By virtue of reading this, you already subscribe to NRA-ILA’s FAX Alert, but are you enrolled in ILA’s free "Grassroots Network," which offers many other resources for NRA-ILA Volunteers? In order to be an effective activist, you must be well-informed of the latest developments in our battle. Through our "Grassroots Network," NRA-ILA has recruited hundreds of thousands of NRA-ILA Volunteers. These Volunteers receive a free monthly newsletter ("Freedom’s Voice"), direct access to NRA-ILA staff via our toll-free hotline, inclusion on a "hot" list of volunteers who are invited to special election workshops and other events in their areas, and access to free materials to distribute throughout the pro-gun community. Be sure to arm yourself with the ammunition you need to combat the anti-gunners and their propaganda. Contact the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division at (800) 392-8683 and request your NRA-ILA Volunteer Information Form (VIF) so that we may enroll you in the "Grassroots Network," and allow you to take advantage of our resources immediately. You may also complete an on-line VIF.

Stay in Constant Contact with your Elected Officials. More than anyone else, elected officials pay attention to the views of their constituents—especially in an election year! The very essence of our legislative system is based upon the notion of an active citizenry engaged in the legislative process. Whether by phone, letter, fax, e-mail, or personal meeting, you must continuously inform your elected officials—both in Washington, D.C., and in your state legislature—of your opposition to more gun control laws. Tell your lawmakers that, rather then passing additional useless gun restrictions, you want them to enforce the tens of thousands of existing laws on the books that target violent criminals! And remind them you will watch how they vote to determine how you vote on November 5! The NRA-ILA Grassroots Division can provide you with tips and information on how to effectively identify and contact your lawmakers. or see our "Contact your lawmakers" page.And always remember—contact your lawmakers in their district offices as well!


Familiarize Yourself with Daily News Content, and Visit Frequently, NRAILA.org. Bookmark ILA’s website and visit often. You’ll find helpful grassroots activist tools and copious amounts of information to aid in your defense of the Second Amendment. Keep an eye on future FAX Alerts for information on how to fully utilize and easily navigateNRAILA.org.


Working together, we can ensure that our precious liberties are preserved for generations to come. But as it has often been said, "eternal vigilance is the price of liberty." If we become complacent and sit back on our heels, the anti-gun, anti-freedom forces in this nation will pounce on the opportunity to further whittle away our freedom. However, by educating and empowering the pro-Second Amendment community from coast-to-coast, we can enhance our formidable corps of lawful gun owners and keep them engaged in the democratic process to protect our Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

We are looking to you to answer this call. Please contact the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division at (800) 392-8683, or visit NRAILA.org, to learn more about how you can take on an even more active role in defending our mutual freedoms in your community.




HB 2329

, the "Crime Gun Interdiction" bill that will soon be considered by the full Senate, was recently amended into an anti-gun bill using language proposed by the anti-gun organization that calls itself "Americans for Gun Safety" (AGS). (This bill, the Crime Gun Interdiction bill, is HB 2589, but has been attached as an amendment to HB 2329, the adoption fees bill.) The bill now requires that law enforcement trace all firearms found at crime scenes—a transparent attack on private sales. By forcing traces, AGS will argue that all gun sales must leave a paper trail, thus bolstering both its current efforts to shut down traditional American gun shows, as well as its overall goal of imposing a licensing and registration scheme on all law-abiding gun owners. This legislation is aimed at law-abiding gun owners while doing nothing to target violent criminals. Call your State Senator and your two Representatives at (800) 352-8404, and tell them to vote "NO" on the gun control amendment to HB 2329. For additional contact information, use the "Write Your Reps" tool. Also, urge your two Reps. to support Shooting Range Protection, SB 1008, when it comes before them on the House floor.


On Monday, April 22, the California Supreme Court ruled that two local ordinances prohibiting gun shows on county owned property (the Great Western Show in Los Angeles County and the Nordyke’s T&S Trade Show in Alameda County) do not conflict with, and thus are not "preempted" by, state laws regulating firearms. The decisions reflect the degree of hostility toward self defense civil rights that runs through many politicians and judges in California. As a practical matter, the "preemption" decisions do not grant local governments new authority, but no doubt anti-gun politicians will try to use the decisions to justify new incremental infringements on our Right to Keep and Bear Arms. But despite the impression given by some media reports, the cases are not over. They now go back to the federal court of appeals, where First Amendment and Equal Protection issues will be decided. Several of the judges involved in the case so far have signaled that they understand these arguments are valid. A federal court decision should come within the next 30-90 days.


On Tuesday, the House of Representatives easily passed Rep. Tochtrop’s (D-34) HB 1410, which would establish a "Shall-Issue" Right to Carry (RTC) permit system. The bill now moves to the Senate, where the leadership has promised to give the bill a fair hearing. As the end of the session is drawing near, it is vital that HB 1410 go to a committee that will hear it quickly. You can help by contacting Senate President Stan Matsunaka (D-15) at (303) 866-4853 and asking him to send HB 1410 to a friendly committee. Also, contact your Senator and urge him to support the House version of HB 1410 when it reaches the floor. You can call your Senator at (303) 866-2316, or use the "Write Your Reps" tool for additional contact information.


As gun owners and sportsmen are aware, your NRA-ILA and Gun Owners Action League (GOAL) have been working with the Massachusetts Joint Committee on Public Safety in an attempt to draft a bill that makes positive reforms to our gun laws. NRA-ILA and GOAL ask you to show your support for the positive changes to gun laws outlined in the reformed version of H.1087. Call Speaker of the House Tom Finneran (D) at (617) 722-2500, Senate President Thomas Birmingham (D) at (617) 722-1500, and your Representative at (617) 722-2000, and urge them all to support the reformed version of H.1087.


Rep. Hampton’s

(D-147) HB 1680, which seeks to prevent reckless lawsuits against law-abiding gun makers, has been put on the calendar and will be up quickly in the House of Representatives. Also, Rep. Barnitz’s (D-150) RTC bill (HB 1729) received preliminary approval by the House. Contact your Rep. in Jefferson City and urge him to support these two bills. You can call your Rep. at (573) 751-3659, or use the "Write Your Reps" tool to find additional contact information. On the Senate side, Senator Cauthorn’s (R-18) RTC bill, SB 938, is scheduled, but has not been brought up yet. Call your Senator at (573) 751-3824 and tell him to support this bill on the floor.


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.