December 17, 2007

CRAPO RECOMMENDS EXCEPTION TO REGULATION PROHIBITING POSSESSION OF FIREARMS

Federal regulations are inconsistent and infringe on Second Amendment rights

Washington, DC - Washington, DC - Idaho Senator Mike Crapo requested today that prohibitions that keep law-abiding citizens from transporting and carrying firearms on certain public lands be removed. In a letter to Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne spearheaded by Crapo and signed by 46 other Senators, Crapo cited regulations by the National Park Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service as infringing on constitutional rights of individuals. He also pointed out that other federal agencies have deferred to state law regarding firearms on lands under federal management.

Federal Regulations known as 36 CFR 2.4, applicable to the National Park Service, and 50 CFR 27.42, applicable to the Fish and Wildlife Service, prohibit individuals from possessing a firearm on lands managed by those agencies. The prohibition extends to those with valid concealed weapons permits. Other federal land management agencies, such as the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service, allow firearms to be transported and carried on these lands in accordance with the laws of the host state.

"These regulations infringe on the rights of law-abiding gun owners, who wish to transport and carry firearms on or across these lands," Crapo said in the letter. "We support an exception to these regulations to allow law-abiding citizens to transport and carry firearms consistent with state law where the National Park Service sites and the National Wildlife Refuges are located. These inconsistencies in firearms regulations for public lands are confusing, burdensome and unnecessary."

The letter expressed that such regulatory changes would respect the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners, while providing a consistent application of state weapons laws across all land ownership boundaries.

"I am pleased to have such a large and bipartisan number of Senators who have joined me in signing this letter and standing up for Second Amendment rights," Crapo said.