Congressman Morgan Griffith (R-VA) issued the following statement on bipartisan legislation he reintroduced along with Congressman Bill Owens (D-NY), the Protecting Lawful Transportation of Firearms Act:
"Current federal law or the Second Amendment of the Constitution should neither be misinterpreted nor ignored to prevent law-abiding Americans from legally traveling with firearms across state lines," Griffith said. "I am pleased to be reintroducing this bipartisan legislation, and will continue working to protect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding American citizens."
"Responsible gun owners who follow existing laws and procedures should be able to travel throughout the country free from fear of improper arrest or detention," Owens said. "This legislation ensures hunters and sportsmen who travel with their firearms in full compliance with the law will have the appropriate protections to do so."
The Protecting Lawful Transportation of Firearms Act is endorsed by the National Rifle Association (NRA). Original cosponsors:
Joe Barton (TX-06), Bill Cassidy (LA-06), Michael Conaway (TX-11), Rick Crawford (AR-01), Trent Franks (AZ-08), Sam Graves (MO-06), Tim Griffin (AR-02), Richard Hanna (NY-22), Gregg Harper (MS-03), Robert Hurt (VA-05), Lynn Jenkins (KS-02), Bill Johnson (OH-06), Walter Jones (NC-03), Mike Kelly (PA-03), Adam Kinzinger (IL-16), Robert Latta (OH-05), Jeff Miller (FL-01), Alan Nunnelee (MS-01), Bill Owens (NY-21), Ted Poe (TX-02), Bill Posey (FL-08), Nick Rahall (WV-03), Scott Rigell (VA-02), Phil Roe (TN-01), Mike Rogers (AL-03), Dennis Ross (FL-15), Lynn Westmoreland (GA-03), Steve Womack (AR-03), and Don Young (AK-at large).
From the NRA -- Gun owners who needed this legislation:
In 2004, the Port Authority Police Department (PAPD) arrested John Torraco at LaGuardia Airport for possession of a firearm. Torraco, an attorney and law professor from Florida, had stored his legally owned unloaded handgun in his checked luggage. However, when he declared the firearm to the counter agent (as required by federal law) he was arrested and charged with possession of an unlicensed handgun.
In 2005, William Winstanley, a New York state resident, was detained at John F. Kennedy International Airport when he attempted to check a handgun in his luggage, again in compliance with the requirements of § 926A. Winstanley was not arrested, but his travel was delayed for several days while he proved that he was in compliance with federal law.
In 2007, Greg Revell, a Utah resident, was flying through Newark Liberty International Airport to his final destination in Pennsylvania. However, his flight into New Jersey was late, which caused him to miss his connecting flight. Revell was forced to collect his baggage and spend the night in a Newark hotel. When he attempted to recheck his baggage the following morning, he declared the unloaded handgun to the counter agent. PAPD officers arrested Revell for illegal possession of a handgun and ammunition under New Jersey law. Revell spent three days in jail before he was able to make bail.