Baucus, Tester Tell Holder to Stay Away from Guns

By Beacon Staff

Further proof that renewing the assault-weapons ban isn’t going to happen. Montana Sens. Max Baucus and Jon Tester have sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder emphasizing that neither would support reinstating the gun law. Several of their Democratic colleagues, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have also said they would oppose legislation reviving the 1994 ban.

The letter to Holder from Montana’s U.S. senators:

Dear Attorney General Holder:

This letter is in regards to your recent comments suggesting the reinstatement of the ban on assault weapons. We oppose reinstating the ban on the sale of assault weapons, and we call on the Department of Justice to enforce existing laws before it considers imposing any new restrictions on gun ownership.

Your comments noted increased violence among international drug traffickers as a reason to reexamine the ban on assault weapons within this country; however, this statement fails to acknowledge laws already in place that work to address this issue. Under current law, both transferring a firearm to someone knowing that it will be used to commit a violent or drug-trafficking crime as well as possessing a firearm in furtherance of a Federal drug trafficking crime are already federal felonies punishable by imprisonment.

We will strongly oppose any legislation that will infringe upon the rights of individual gun owners. We value our outdoor heritage, and a large part of that is our Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. Passing this heritage down from one generation to the next is a sacred part of being a Montanan, and something that we will always fight to protect. In the light of the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling of District of Columbia v. Heller, affirming the Second Amendment right to bear arms as an individual and constitutionally protected right, we urge you to avoid any legislative proposals that would jeopardize the Constitutional right of law-abiding Americans to own firearms.

Sincerely,
U.S. Senator Max Baucus
U.S. Senator Jon Tester

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