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News & Editorials

NRA screws Ohioans again!

by Jim Ramm,


As has already been reported, HB 192 passed the Ohio House, Wednesday, 16 May 2001.

The version of the bill, as passed, has been posted to the Ohio General Assembly site:

There was only one amendment to the bill. It was proposed by the NRA on behalf of the National Shooting Sports Federation. It changed the meaning of the term "Member of the firearms industry".

The original (as introduced) read as follows:

(4) "Member of the firearms industry" means trade associations of manufacturers, dealers, importers, or other persons interested in, and manufacturers, dealers, and importers of, firearms, firearms components, or firearms ammunition.

The wording which passed out of the House reads:

(4) "Member of the firearms industry" means any manufacturer, dealer, or importer of firearms, firearms components, or firearms ammunition or any trade association the members of which, in whole or in part, are manufacturers, dealers, or importers of firearms, firearms components, or firearms ammunition.

Basically what has happened is that the main association of manufacturers, dealers and importers asked the NRA to submit an amendment which would reduce the number of persons or entities which would be protected from suit if this bill ultimately passes the Senate and becomes law.

By eliminating the phrase 'other persons interested in' does away with individual citizens who might sell a firearm as well as gunshow promoters and other table holders who are not FFL licensees (previous individual citizen who might sell a gun).

The question is; "Who is the NRA representing here? It's membership which consists solely of individual citizens, or the firearms industry which has its own organization with its own lobbyists." The wording of the bill which passed the House makes it quite clear. The NRA, as in the case of HB 225, is selling its membership down the river in favor of the interests of others - industry members in the case of HB 192 and politicians in search of favors in the case of HB 225.

The thing that really bothers me is, "why was this amendment submitted in the first place?" The bill passed 6-2. Rep. Jerse, in his questions on the bill a week or two earlier made a big thing about the definition of 'member of the firearms industry'. That's the only reason I can think of, but there was no need to amend the bill to make Jerse happy since there was already a majority who would have passed the bill as introduced.

We may never know 'why' the bill was modified to delete individuals, but we do know 'WHO' requested the modification. I was sitting next to John Hohenwarter, the NRA / ILA lobbyist, in the committee meeting when the bill was amended and voted on. I asked him who's amendment it was. He said, "it's ours, the National Shooting Sports Federation asked us to submit it." I told him what it would do (based on the description of the amendment given by the chairman). He said that was incorrect. I remember thinking to myself, "yeah, and your CCW bill doesn't require fingerprints just because you didn't mention them." (It says a BCI&I / FBI background check is required - the only way those two groups do background checks is through complete sets of fingerprints.)

All you NRA members need to call NRA headquarters and ask James Jay Baker (NRA/ILA Executive Director) just who NRA is supporting and why they don't support the RIGHTS of their members for once.

On another issue, we need to call our members of the House and Criminal Justice Committee Chair - Ann Womer-Benjamin. Ask your house member NOT TO SUPPORT / CO-SPONSOR ANY OTHER CCW LEGISLATION. Stress that Ohio Grass-roots wants HB 225 to be the ONLY BILL INTRODUCED so as not to 'muddy the waters' and split support (which in the past has gotten us nothing).

Ask Ann Womer-Benjamin to hold hearings on HB 225 as soon as possible. Time is running out if we want to get this issue taken care of by the end of the year.

If you don't know who your house member is you can find out by clicking the link below:

Thanks for your help and support.

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KABA NOTE:  The above report from Mr. Ramm was printed unedited. As always, rebuttals to this type of confrontational article are welcome. Should you wish to defend the accused, submit your article here, or forever hold your peace: That invitation includes anyone from the NRA, NSSF or any individual who believes she or he can shed light on this situation.


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"The ideal form of government is democracy tempered with assassination." --Voltaire (Source:

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