www.washingtonexaminer.com >> Local >> Local News - Washington DC News - D.C.?s AG cites danger to VIPs if Congress axes city?s gun laws
D.C. Attorney General Peter Nickles said presidential and other motorcades will be exposed to high-powered arms fire if the District’s gun laws are stripped out by Congress.
“The proposed Ensign Amendment, which among other things, would prohibit the District of Columbia from enacting legislation on firearms, would have a serious public safety impact for the entire region,” Nickles wrote in a recent letter to D.C.’s nonvoting congressional delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton.
The amendment was added to D.C.’s voting rights bill earlier this year by Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev. Voting rights advocates were furious by what they called a “poison pill” amendment aimed at undermining efforts to give the District a vote in the House.
Nickles said the bill jeopardizes the safety of D.C.’s dignitaries.
“Government facilities, dignitaries and public servants are prime targets for terrorists, both foreign and domestic,” Nickles’ letter states.
“But in Washington, D.C., the likelihood of attack is higher and the challenges to protecting the city are greater.”
Last year, Nickles spearheaded D.C.’s failed efforts to defend its restrictive gun laws before the U.S. Supreme Court. In a landmark decision in Heller v. D.C., the court ruled that the Second Amendment not only protects a citizen’s right to bear arms, but to use those arms for self-defense. The decision gutted the District’s gun laws and has jeopardized gun laws in other jurisdictions.
The District revamped its laws, but made the registration process arduous.
Gun rights advocates have vowed to challenge D.C.’s new laws and to continue to bring court challenges until the Supreme Court decides the limits of “reasonable regulation” mentioned but not defined in the Heller case.