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Nadler: Shame on GOP for Allowing Weapons Ban to Expire

Washington, DC, September 12, 2004
Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) today blasted the Bush Administration and Republican leadership in Congress for refusing to extend the ban on assault weapons. The law prohibiting the manufacture, transfer or possession of semiautomatic assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition feeding devices expired today despite repeated demands by Democrats to renew the ban of such dangerous military-style weapons.

"Do Vice-President Cheney and Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia shoot ducks with Uzis?" questioned Nadler. "Uzis are not necessary for those who want weapons to hunt or defend themselves. Why are the Republicans so determined to allow civilians to carry semi-automatic weapons? The fact is the Repubicans are so hungry for the generous coffers of the National Rifle Association that they are willing to risk the lives of innocent Americans at the hand of dangerous and violent lunatics."

The 1994 Weapons Assault Ban prohibited Uzis, AK-47s, and other semi-automatic guns whose light triggers and rapid-fire capability make them weapons of choice for criminals. These weapons are not necessary for hunting or self-defense and pose a very high risk if available to violent criminals.

To further curb the use of guns, Nadler introduced the Assault Weapons Ban Enhancement Act, which is designed to close loopholes that allow foreign firearms manufacturers and U.S. gun importers to evade restrictions on guns and design "rule-beaters" to circumvent any ban. Cosmetic alterations made to weapons by these manufacturers and importers allow them to avoid the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban altogether.

"Since the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban, this nation has seen a dramatic decline in crimes committed with the guns prohibited," said Nadler. "That the Republicans are willing to break this drop in gun violence to appease their political cronies and donors in the National Rifle Association is a breathtaking example of malfeasance."

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