August 19, 2020
NSSF Profile Q & A: Representative Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.)
Editor’s Note: We are pleased to post the latest of our occasional Q&A features with an elected official who supports hunting and the shooting sports. NSSF thanks U.S. Representative Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) for agreeing to talk with us.
Who introduced you to hunting/the shooting sports, and at what age?
My dad first introduced me to hunting, and I think I bagged my first game when I was four or five years old. When I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me hunting with him.
What was your most recent shooting sports/hunting experience? With whom?
Duck hunting in my congressional district with some friends.
Describe your favorite shooting sports/hunting activity.
Turkey hunting in the Ouachita Mountains with my Remington 870 Express 12-gauge shotgun that my father gave to me as a high school graduation gift.
Which piece of pending legislation related to the firearm industry is particularly important to you and why?
On the shooting sports side, it would be streamlining the possession of suppressors so that shooters can better protect their hearing (Hearing Protection Act, H.R. 155). With access to suppressors, more people can enjoy shooting with less recoil, and more people will be able to participate. Another issue I’m working on with the Natural Resources Committee is making sure our public lands remain just that: public, so that everyone has places to hunt and shoot. Over the past decade, the number of recreational shooters has dropped drastically due in part to restricted access to public lands.
What do you see as the challenges and opportunities for hunters and shooting sports enthusiasts during the current Congressional session?
Education on the issue is both a challenge and an opportunity. Arkansas is one of the best places in the country for shooting sports, and I hope our state can be a model for safe, responsible firearm usage.
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