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Grassroots Alert: Vol. 9, No. 41 10/11/2002



Congress is still in session, but there remains little time for action on two of NRA’s key legislative goals—a prohibition on reckless lawsuits designed to bankrupt law-abiding gun manufacturers, and the establishment of an effective armed pilots program.

Reckless lawsuit preemption legislation would block politically-motivated lawsuits that attempt to hold law-abiding gun makers liable for the criminal misuse of their products, and legislation still needs to move through both chambers of Congress. The House version, H.R. 2037, has 231 co-sponsors and has been passed by two committees. Its next stop is the House floor for full consideration. The Senate version, S. 2268, now has 43 co-sponsors. The number of co-sponsors for each bill shows solid support, but time is rapidly running out for lawmakers to pass these critical reforms. Please call both your U.S. Senators and your U.S. Representative and urge them to promote the passage of reckless lawsuit preemption legislation.

The U.S. Senate still needs to act on H.R. 5005—the legislation that would create a Homeland Security Department and which contains the Smith amendment. The Smith amendment seeks to establish an armed pilots program that would allow qualified commercial pilots to be able to have access to firearms as a last line of defense against terrorist hijackers. Please continue to contact your U.S. Senators and urge them to keep the Smith amendment intact, and to do everything possible to ensure any armed pilots program passed includes every pilot interested in participating in the program.

To contact your U.S. Representative, call (202) 225-3121, and to reach your U.S. Senators, call (202) 224-3121. Just ask to speak with your particular lawmaker. You can also use our "Write Your Representatives" tool.


Perhaps the simplest, yet most important action gun owners can take to ensure they will be able to help in the defense of our Right to Keep and Bear Arms is to make sure they are registered to vote. Only currently registered voters are eligible to cast their votes in the November 5 elections. 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, so USE IT OR LOSE IT! For voter registration information and applications for yourself or to share with your fellow Second Amendment supporters, contact the ILA Grassroots Division at (800) 392-8683 or click here. 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 within the pro-Second Amendment community in your area and help us register additional voters. Voter registration deadlines vary from state to state, and the deadline may have passed in several states. If your state’s deadline has passed, you can still register for the next election cycle. Remember, even if we defeat every anti-gun candidate this year, many will be back in another two years,so get registered now!


Also, NRA members should be sure to keep an eye out for the November issue of their NRA magazine, which should arrive soon! This issue will contain our Political Preference Chart, which will include NRA-PVF rating and endorsement information on candidates seeking office.




In preparation for the November 5 elections, NRA-ILA has scheduled FREE Grassroots-Election Workshops across the country. Fifty-eight Workshops in 32 states have been conducted to date. These Workshops provide NRA members with training on what they can do in their local areas to ensure pro-gun candidates win their elections this year. The meetings also provide a venue for lawmakers, candidates seeking office, and their staffs to reach out to NRA members and explain their positions on our Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

Upcoming Workshops are slated for:

Mankato, Minn. — 10/17

Monticello, Minn. — 10/19

Duluth, Minn. — 10/21


NRA members who are interested in attending should contact the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division at (800) 392-8683 for details and to reserve their spots. NRA members who have access to the Internet can also click here to reserve their spots on-line. Any NRA member who is unable to contact NRA-ILA, but still wishes to attend a Workshop that is drawing near, should please feel free to attend. We can register you on the spot.


Even if you cannot attend a Workshop, or none is scheduled near you, there is still plenty you can do to help ensure victory for the pro-gun community during this election cycle. To assist you with this, NRA-ILA has designated an individual in almost every congressional district (known as an NRA-ILA Election Volunteer Coordinator [EVC]) who stands ready to plug you into ongoing campaign activities. The EVC in your district is a fellow NRA member who is working to provide pro-gun campaigns in your state and area with volunteers to help with phone banks, literature drops, voter registration drives, precinct walks, get out the vote and Election Day activities, and other campaign activities. To locate your EVC so you can start working on pro-freedom campaigns TODAY, please call the ILA Grassroots at (800) 392-VOTE (8683), or click here.  If your district currently has a vacancy for an EVC, and you would like to serve in this capacity, please call the NRA-ILA Grassroots Division and ask to speak with the Grassroots Coordinator for your state.

Finally, you may also refer to your October NRA magazine (which you should have received), as your district’s EVC’s contact information will appear on the front cover. But please don’t wait until then: Contact your EVC and begin your work TODAY!




The House and Senate have each amended their respective General Tort reform bills (HB 11 and SB 2014) to include NRA-supported lawsuit preemption language. Key members of the House and Senate will begin working out differences between the bills next week. Please call your Senator and Representative and urge them to pass meaningful tort reform with protection for law-abiding gun manufacturers during the current special session.



NRA members must act quickly to stop the advancement of anti-gun legislation in the State Legislature! Despite opposition from pro-gun legislators in the Senate, the so-called "smart gun" bill continues to advance in the Legislature. Now in the hands of the Assembly, A.700 is a COMPLETE HANDGUN BAN masquerading as a "childproof" handgun bill. As written, A.700 would set in motion an ultimate ban of all new models of handguns in New Jersey if so-called "smart guns" are introduced to the market. Simply put, A.700 seeks to ban ALL current models of handguns in New Jersey. This legislation now faces a possible vote in the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee this Thursday, October 17. It is imperative that you contact your Assemblymember immediately and ask him to oppose A.700. If you are unsure of how to reach your Assemblymember, please call the main State Legislature information line, (609) 292-4840, and ask for assistance. You can also use our "Write Your Representatives" tool.



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.