Rep. Newhouse proposes legislation to deem the firearms industry “essential”

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FILE - In this Dec. 18, 2019, file photo, Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Wash., speaks as the House of Representatives debates the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump at the Capitol in Washington. Newhouse voted to impeach Trump earlier this year, and now at least three Republicans have said they will challenge him in next year's election for the 4th U.S. House District seat, representing central Washington.

WASHINGTON D.C. — In an effort to bolster the firearms industry, U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse of Washington’s 4th congressional district is introducing a new piece of legislation entitled the ‘Second Amendment is Essential Act.’

According to a press release by the U.S. Representative, this legislation would label the firearms industry as part of the ‘critical infrastructure sector;’ thus deeming the firearms industry “essential.” In an attached statement release alongside the legislation, Rep. Newhouse accuses Governors across the country, including Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, of infringing on rights afforded by the Second Amendment.

“It is always unconstitutional for government to restrict the rights of law-abiding gun owners, but to do so in the midst of a crisis is especially unconscionable,” Rep. Newhouse said. “This legislation protects law-abiding citizens’ ability to exercise their Second Amendment rights and prevents future anti-gun restrictions that restrict lawful access to firearms in times of emergency.”

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Rep. Newhouse also claimed that a failure to designate the firearms industry as critical infrastructure “recklessly tied the hands of our law enforcement officers who require access to these tools to ensure the safety of our communities.”

In short, the ‘Second Amendment is Essential Act’ is based on the U.S. forefathers’ determination that the Second Amendment is essential to the country’s system of government. Rep. Newhouse draws from the USA Patriot Act, which defines critical infrastructure as “systems and assets, whether physical or virtual, so vital to the United States that the incapacity or destruction of such systems and assets would have a debilitating impact on security, national economic security, national public health or safety, or any combination of those matters.”

Rep. Newhouse’s belief is that the right to bear arms is essential in a state of emergency. Therefore, he thinks that the firearms industry must be deemed essential so that it can operate as usual during instances of a disaster; whether that be during a global pandemic or an act of terrorism threatening domestic soil.

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You can read the full text of this bill below and learn more about the bill by clicking here.

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