Update on the Issues

A look back and a look ahead.

Field & Stream Online Editors

A list of issues and accomplishments of any group supporting the shooting, hunting and outdoor trade would have to be headed by the enactment of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act.

The victory was a combined effort of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the National Hunting & Shooting Sports Heritage Fund and the National Rifle Association of America, with support coming from a number of other organizations, such as the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation, and a multitude of individuals. The organizations reporting below all noted the act's passage as one of the great accomplishments of 2005. The NSSF, in its recap of that achievement, fairly represents the views expressed by all the groups here. Here's what these organizations had to report on the issues of the year past and present.

NATIONAL SHOOTING SPORTS FOUNDATION
Mission: Our purpose is to provide trusted leadership in addressing industry challenges and in delivering programs and services to meet the needs of our members.

Issues and Accomplishments: Before a room full of firearms industry executives, the leadership of the National Rifle Association and conservation leaders, President Bush signed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) into law on October 26, 2005. This bill represented the top legislative priority for the firearms industry in the fight against politically motivated trial lawyers and opportunistic politicians seeking to destroy our industry. This legislative achievement was years in the making and a tribute to the collective efforts of industry Heritage Fund members, the NRA, the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation and a multitude of other organizations and individuals.

Final passage did not occur by chance. It took businesses that committed to placing principle before profits by contributing a portion of their income to finance voter education efforts and pay legal bills. It took dedicated individuals who walked the halls of Congress, lobbying for the PLCAA, and it took nothing less than changing the face of the U.S. Senate through Vote Your Sport campaigns starting in 2000 that succeeded in educating sportsmen and gun owners on the dangers of antigun politicians and mobilizing them at the ballot box to support candidates who support our hunting and shooting heritage and the Second Amendment. The results of the 2004 senatorial and presidential elections gave us a decisive advantage that prevented any procedural motions from derailing our bill.

We must not become complacent, because we know those opposed to our industry seek to strike back. Just days after President Bush signed the PLCAA, antigun groups were attempting to convince Canadian officials to file lawsuits against gun manufacturers for the criminal misuse of our products.

With less than three years left in the term of a president who participates in and respects the shooting sports, it is imperative we double our efforts to extend our reach and educate policy makers in critical sectors of the government.

This year, the NSSF will aggressively reach out to members of Congress on issues that include rescheduling federal excise tax payments for firearms and ammunition manufacturers, reviewing rules and regulations governing firearms imports and exports and securing continued funding for Project ChildSafe as well as Don't Lie for the Other Guy. Project ChildSafe has received numerous awards for excellence and has greatly raised the level of firearm safety in the home. The Don't Lie program is recognized by ATF director Carl J. Truscott as "vital in educating federal firearms licensees and their employees on how to recognize and deter the illegal purchase of firearms through straw purchases." This industry-supported partnership between the NSSF and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms serves as a model to help boost cooperation and assisthe ATF in its effort to fight crime.

On the state level, the NSSF, its retailer division, the National Association of Firearms Dealers, the California Association of Firearms Dealers and other allies effectively encouraged Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's veto of California Assembly Bill 996, a costly bill that would have made ammunition inaccessible to customers, prevented comparison shopping and taken up an inordinate amount of retail staff's time. Two other California bills that are impractical and would cause financial hardship to manufacturers, introduced last year, could come back to life in the state legislature again this year. S.B. 357, which would require serial numbers on all handgun ammunition, including rimfire ammunition, was suspended until this year. A.B. 352, which would require handguns to "microstamp" their make, model and serial number on ammunition they fire, was shelved by its sponsor when its support in the Senate fell one vote short of passage.

The NSSF is also supporting the California Association of Firearm Retailers along with the NRA and other groups in their lawsuit challenging San Francisco's Proposition H, which bans the sale of all firearms and ammunition in the city, as well as the private ownership of handguns.

The NSSF will also be paying close attention to work going on at the United Nations. This year the U.N. will convene to discuss the markings, export and importation of small arms. The NSSF will be working with pro-gun groups and organizations to make sure that the U.N. takes no actions that could interfere with activities of the U.S. firearms industry.

We scored tremendous political victories in 2005, but our work continues. If there is one lesson that our industry has learned, it is that we cannot afford to rest upon our past successes. They must be stepping-stones to building a permanent pro-sportsmen, pro-gun, pro-industry majority in Congress and electing a pro-gun president in 2008.

--The National Shooting Sports Foundation

Contact Information: For more information on the NSSF's government-relations program, contact Lawrence G. Keane, senior vice president and general counsel, at 203-426-1320 or lkeane@nssf.org.

[NEXT "NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION"]

| NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION
**Mission: **The 144-year-old National Rifle Association is America's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. Four million members strong, the NRA helps preserve Second Amendment rights, advocates enforcement of existing laws against criminals and is the leader in firearms education and training.

Issues and Accomplishments: ConocoPhillips Boycott: The NRA launched a national campaign against ConocoPhillips in response to the corporation's antigun policy. The company has filed a federal lawsuit blocking an Oklahoma law that protects employees' Second Amendment rights. The law came in response to the firing of 12 Weyerhaeuser employees in the state for having firearms safely stored in their locked vehicles in a public-access company parking lot. The NRA also organized rallies in support of the fired workers.

Florida's "Castle Doctrine" Self-Defense Law: Governor Jeb Bush signed the "Castle Doctrine" self-defense law, which dictates that if a criminal breaks into your home, your occupied vehicle or your place of business, it may be reasonably presumed he is there to do bodily harm, and lethal force may be used. It also removes the "duty to retreat" if you are attacked in any place where you have a right to be. Furthermore, this law provides protection from criminal prosecution and civil litigation for those who defend themselves from criminal attack.

Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans Gun Confiscation: In the wake of crimes perpetrated by roving gangs and individuals, authorities in New Orleans seized legal firearms from law-abiding residents. In response to these unconstitutional actions, the NRA filed a motion and secured a restraining order to block such authorities from confiscating law-abiding citizens' firearms.

The NRA also helped obtain a favorable change in policy after FEMA had placed a ban on firearms at its emergency housing parks built in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. D.C. Gun Ban: In an important step toward reforming the District of Columbia's draconian gun laws, Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) attached an amendment to the D.C. appropriations bill (passed 259¿¿¿161) that would restore the self-defense rights of legal gun owners in the district. Similar legislation is pending in the U.S. Senate. Washington's citizens have been disarmed for nearly 30 years, while their city has earned the dubious distinction of being the nation's murder capital.

No Net Loss of Hunting Lands: The NRA seeks to pass legislation guaranteeing no net loss of hunting lands at both the state and federal levels. No-net-loss legislation requires that for every acre of public land closed to hunting, the state has to open an acre to hunting. Such laws have passed in many states, and a version is pending in Congress.

--Chris W. Cox, executive director, Institute for Legislative Action, National Rifle Association of America

Contact Information: To learn more about these issues, contact the National Rifle Association at 11250 Waples Mill Road, Fairfax, VA 22030, or visit nra.org or nraila.org. For media inquiries, call 703-267-3820.

[NEXT "CONGRESSIONAL SPORTSMEN'S FOUNDATION AND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF SPORTSMEN'S CAUCUSES"]

| CONGRESSIONAL SPORTSMEN'S FOUNDATION AND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF SPORTSMEN'S CAUCUSES
Mission: The Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation works in Washington, D.C., to give sportsmen and the outdoor industry a seat at the table when decisions impacting our outdoor traditions are debated in the nation's capital. Through the CSF's unique affiliation with the more than 300 members of Congress in the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus, the CSF serves as the industry's and sportsmen's link between federal decision makers and leading hunting and fishing organizations.

With the success of the caucus in the U.S. Congress, antigun forces have responded by taking the fight against our hunting traditions to the state level. The National Assembly of Sportsmen's Caucuses (NASC) was launched to unite state legislators and provide sportsmen and industry with a voice in the hallsleans Gun Confiscation: In the wake of crimes perpetrated by roving gangs and individuals, authorities in New Orleans seized legal firearms from law-abiding residents. In response to these unconstitutional actions, the NRA filed a motion and secured a restraining order to block such authorities from confiscating law-abiding citizens' firearms.

The NRA also helped obtain a favorable change in policy after FEMA had placed a ban on firearms at its emergency housing parks built in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. D.C. Gun Ban: In an important step toward reforming the District of Columbia's draconian gun laws, Rep. Mark Souder (R-Ind.) attached an amendment to the D.C. appropriations bill (passed 259¿¿¿161) that would restore the self-defense rights of legal gun owners in the district. Similar legislation is pending in the U.S. Senate. Washington's citizens have been disarmed for nearly 30 years, while their city has earned the dubious distinction of being the nation's murder capital.

No Net Loss of Hunting Lands: The NRA seeks to pass legislation guaranteeing no net loss of hunting lands at both the state and federal levels. No-net-loss legislation requires that for every acre of public land closed to hunting, the state has to open an acre to hunting. Such laws have passed in many states, and a version is pending in Congress.

--Chris W. Cox, executive director, Institute for Legislative Action, National Rifle Association of America

Contact Information: To learn more about these issues, contact the National Rifle Association at 11250 Waples Mill Road, Fairfax, VA 22030, or visit nra.org or nraila.org. For media inquiries, call 703-267-3820.

[NEXT "CONGRESSIONAL SPORTSMEN'S FOUNDATION AND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF SPORTSMEN'S CAUCUSES"]

| CONGRESSIONAL SPORTSMEN'S FOUNDATION AND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF SPORTSMEN'S CAUCUSES
Mission: The Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation works in Washington, D.C., to give sportsmen and the outdoor industry a seat at the table when decisions impacting our outdoor traditions are debated in the nation's capital. Through the CSF's unique affiliation with the more than 300 members of Congress in the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus, the CSF serves as the industry's and sportsmen's link between federal decision makers and leading hunting and fishing organizations.

With the success of the caucus in the U.S. Congress, antigun forces have responded by taking the fight against our hunting traditions to the state level. The National Assembly of Sportsmen's Caucuses (NASC) was launched to unite state legislators and provide sportsmen and industry with a voice in the halls