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January 27, 2009

NSSF On Lou Dobbs Tonight


LGK_CNN_Lou_Dobbs The cameraman for "Lou Dobbs Tonight" just left our offices after interviewing NSSF Senior Vice President and General Counsel Lawrence G. Keane for the show tonight on CNN starting at 7 pm. Topics being discussed were bullet serialization, firearms microstamping and industry concerns regarding the Obama/Biden administration. We're told the segment won't be a long one but anytime these issues are aired with industry's input on a national TV show it bears watching and passing along, particularly since bills concerning these two issues have been introduced in several states recently. NSSF has had a good record in beating back such legislation over the past several years, with only California successful, after several tries, in passing microstamping in 2007. The law, signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, is scheduled to go into effect in January 2010.
Some brief background . . .
Bullet serialization is the process by which each individual round of ammunition is identified and marked with a laser-engraved serial number. It is as a practical matter totally infeasible to place a serial number on each of the 14 billion cartridges of ammunition manufactured in the United States each year, and the 4 to 6 billion that are imported.  In short, bullet serialization legislation amounts to a de facto ban on ammunition because implementing serialization would significantly slow down what is currently a finely tuned, efficient manufacturing process for ammunition, increasing costs for the manufacturer and, ultimately, and perhaps prohibitively, for the consumer. Industry has many others concerns with bullet serialization as well. Read NSSF's white paper on bullet serialization.
Microstamping is a patented process that laser engraves the firearm's make, model and serial number on the tip of the gun's firing pin so that, in theory, it imprints the information on discharged cartridge cases. NSSF and other groups, including major law enforcement organizations, are opposed to this unproven and unreliable technology. These serial numbers wear in normal use, and firing pins are often replaced during the life of a firearm, so this makes as much sense as putting serial numbers on tire treads. The cost of this dubious technology is a great concern to firearms owners and taxpayers alike, since manufacturers would be forced to increase the price of firearms to civilians and law enforcement agencies. Read NSSF's white paper on microstamping.