April 12, 2024

Urgent! Tell your Legislators to Hold the Line!

Patriots, please Take Action to tell your legislators to stop compromising away your rights!

In order to restore and preserve our God-given right to “keep and bear arms” within Montana, we must tell our elected officials to remain firm!

President of The Montana Shooting Sports Association, Gary Marbut, provides us with a briefing on the legislation:

“MSSA’s constitutional referenda have not yet had their first public hearing. They are waiting while the legislature works through the mass of general bills. These referenda bills include H.B. 197 (Regents powers), H.B. 551 (Montana Right to Keep & Bear Arms Amendment), and S.B. 272 (Sheriffs in the Constitution).”

The Nation Makers (1903) by Howard Pyle

 

S.B. 361 Non-discrimination over firearms. Sponsor, Sen. John Fuller. There are a number of ways that discrimination against firearms may be rearing its ugly head. Some lenders and credit or payment processors are refusing to provide services to entities that manufacture, distribute or sell firearms. Some insurers may decline to service firearm-related businesses or firearm owners. Some private entities with public access may disallow firearms but fail to offer any actual safety to disarmed people. All of these are discriminatory. The Montana Constitution prohibits discrimination because of political or civil rights.

Update: MSSA reports the amendments were made that gutted sections that prohibited state investment of public funds in firms that discriminate against the Second Amendment. A similar section was removed that would have addressed prejudices by insurance companies. Mr. Marbut explained that “since a lot of Montana investments, such as the Coal Tax Trust Fund, are lodged with giant East Coast money managers who reinvest in a broad portfolio of stocks, bonds, and other investments, many international” socialists would never allow legislation that hurts their bottom line. As for the insurance companies, “the political reality is that the insurance industry has a strong lobby in Helena, with competent people well paid to do nothing but hang out at the Capitol full time and influence legislators…To get the bill past the Senate, it was necessary for the sponsor to accept the amendment exempting the insurance industry.” I guess the aspiring tyrants in Helena really only care about appeasing those who have no concern for how your tax dollars are spent, not to mention your God-given rights… Click here to see the vote.

H.B. 629 The cost of self-defense. Sponsor, Rep. Brandon Ler. When citizens lawfully employ arms in defense of life, liberty, and property, they may still be destroyed financially by an overzealous prosecutor. This bill proposes that if a person is prosecuted for a crime, claims self-defense successfully and is not convicted, then the cost of the person’s defense must be awarded to the accused by the court.

Update: The House Judiciary Committee amended the bill to say that the funds would come out of the general fund and not the prosecutor, your taxpayer dollars at work defending unaccountable government bureaucrats… MSSA believes that despite the amendment, the bill is still worth supporting. Click here to see the vote. H.B. 629 was referred to the House Appropriations committee and will be heard on March 15th.

H.B. 631 The price of civil rights. Sponsor, Rep. Jedediah Hinkle. There are times when people’s right to keep or bear arms is violated by a governmental entity. The person complains, but the entity ignores the citizen. The person threatens to sue to get their rights enforced by a court. The abusive entity says, so sue – we have lawyers on staff paid by the taxpayers. The proposed law would clarify that if a person must sue to enforce constitutional rights and the person prevails, then the person should be awarded the cost of pursuing the necessary lawsuit.

Update: The House Judiciary Committee amended the bill to stipulate that the law is restricted to  government and not private party lawsuits. MSSA considers this amendment to be in line with the proper role of government. Click here to see the vote.

H.B. 604 Sheriffs First – Law Enforcement Cooperation. Sponsor, Rep. Jennifer Carlson. In Montana, we believe the sheriff is the chief law enforcement officer in the county, and ought to have the tools to implement that status. This bill requires federal officers to obtain the written permission of the local sheriff before conducting an arrest, search, or seizure in the sheriff’s county.

Update: The House Judiciary Committee amended, at the behest of the  Montana Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, completely gutted the bill by reducing all penalties for violation and non-cooperation to a simple misdemeanor. The bill died on the second reading in the House; many “Republicans” voted against this critical legislation. Click here to see the vote.

GOA & MSSA are presenting a unified front in support of these critical pieces of pro-freedom legislation so that Montana remains a Free State!

Patriots, please Take Action to send a respectful message demanding that your representatives Hold the Line and Defend Liberty!

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