04/98 Repeal Sporting Purposes Test

GOA Denounces Clinton Gun Ban
— Calls for passage of Rep. Paul’s “sporting purposes” repeal

by Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151
(Friday, April 10, 1998)

On Monday, Gun Owners of America condemned President Clinton’s move to ban the importation of 58 semi-automatic firearms. GOA spokesmen conducted interviews and appeared on national talk shows to denounce the ban, which covers designs based on AK-47, FN-FAL, HK 91 and 93, Uzi and SIG SG550 rifles.

“President Clinton has simply affirmed what he has always believed,” said Larry Pratt, Executive Director of Gun Owners of America. “Clinton really believes that the Second Amendment is about duck hunting.”

This recent gun ban also helps expose the incremental approach to banning guns that Sarah Brady’s organization (HCI) has been pushing for years. Indeed, in discussing the then-upcoming import ban last October, one White House official was quoted in the Los Angeles Times (10/22/97) as saying, “We are taking the law and bending it as far as we can to capture a whole new class of guns.”

GOA was quick to point out, however, that the blame for this ban does not entirely fall on the president’s shoulders. “Congress must repeal the unconstitutional sporting purposes test,” said Pratt. “And the best way to do this is to pass Rep. Ron Paul’s bill.”

Pratt was referring to H.R. 2721, a bill in Congress that would repeal the sporting purposes provisions of the 1968 Gun Control Act. “If Congress were to repeal that aspect of the ’68 Act, the President would not be empowered to circumvent the Constitution by enforcing unconstitutional regulations,” Pratt said.

The President has capitalized on provisions of the 1968 Act, stipulating that imported firearms must be “particularly suitable for or readily adaptable to sporting purposes.”

This “sporting purposes” distinction is an unconstitutional hairsplitting that bans the import of some firearms merely because they are used to defend one’s family, rather than to shoot deer.

The Second Amendment does protect hunters and sportsmen – but only within a larger context. The founding fathers realized that Americans would use their firearms to protect themselves, their families, and their country.


1. Urge your Representative (202-225-3121) to cosponsor H.R. 2721. This bill, introduced by Rep. Paul (R-TX), would not only repeal the “sporting purposes” test, it would also repeal the onerous Brady registration law and the Clinton semi-auto ban of 1994. Repealing the sporting purposes test would forever remove the ability of future Presidents to ban guns based on “sporting purposes” criteria.

2. Gun owners in the states below should contact the Republican members of the Treasury Appropriations Subcommittees. Congress can amend the Treasury appropriations bill to defund the ability of any administrative official from keeping the above-mentioned firearms out of the country. Urge the Congressmen below to introduce and support an amendment stating that no Treasury funds may be used to enforce the Clinton import ban.

House/Senate Republicans on Treasury Appropriation Subcoms.
All fax numbers begin with “202”

                     Fax         E-Mail
Rep. Aderholt (AL) 225-5587
Rep. Kolbe (AZ) 225-0378 [email protected]
Rep. Forbes (NY) 225-3143 [email protected]
Rep. Northup (KY) 225-5776
Rep. Istook (OK) 226-1463 [email protected]
Rep. Wolf (VA) 225-0437
Sen. Shelby (AL) 224-3416 [email protected]
Sen. Campbell (CO) 224-1933
Sen. Faircloth (NC) 224-7406 [email protected]