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Public Statements

Putting Special Interests Ahead of Community Safety

Location: Unknown


Thursday, October 20, 2005

Washington, DC - Congresswoman Doris O. Matsui (CA-5) will vote against the special interest legislation for gun manufacturers being debated in the House of Representatives. This legislation will immunize gun manufacturers from civil lawsuits and will place the interests of the National Riffle Association and weapons makers over law-abiding citizens and their communities.

"Instead of addressing the challenges facing our nation -- the Iraq War, Katrina recovery and rebuilding efforts, rising health care costs and the massive debt -- the House is working to protect the gun industry from lawsuits," stated Matsui. "Congress should prioritize what is in the best long-term interest of America's families. Sadly this special interest legislation clearly indicates the short-term, narrow political priorities driving the House Republican Leadership."

S.397 provides immunity from civil lawsuits for the gun industry in pending and future actions, with only limited exceptions. Under the bill, many weapons manufacturers and sellers whose actions lead to violent crimes cannot be held accountable in civil court. Unfortunately, this bill establishes a lower standard of personal responsibility for the industry, allowing gun sellers to turn a blind eye to those across the counter.

Concluded Matsui, "Congress should be working to provide law enforcement and communities with the resources to prevent guns from falling into the wrong hands, not protecting those who enable violence to plague our communities."

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