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July 1, 2010

The Republican Senate Contest in Kansas is Heating Up


According to an internal Tiahrt campaign poll, Republican Congressmen Todd Tiahrt and Jerry Moran are “statistically tied” in their primary race. Both congressmen are seeking the Senate seat now held by Republican Sen. Sam Brownback, who is running for governor. Rep. Tiahrt, a strong supporter of sportsmen, hunters and gun owners, spoke to members of the firearms industry earlier this year during the NSSF Congressional Fly-In.

In 2003, Rep. Tiahrt sponsored the “Tiahrt Amendment” which prohibits the release of firearms trace data to any entity except law enforcement.  The amendment, part of an appropriations bill, has been renewed every year since. It does not, as claimed by some, prohibit law enforcement from accessing and sharing such data amongst themselves. Also important to note, the Tiahrt Amendment is supported by ATF, Congress and the Fraternal Order of Police, the nation's largest police group.

Many gun control groups have targeted Rep. Tiahrt for defeat, in large part because of his amendment — the importance of which cannot be overstated. Keeping such sensitive data out of the hands of the public, while infuriating gun prohibitionists, protects the lives of law enforcement officers and the integrity of law enforcement investigations.  It was only a few years ago that New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, after questionably obtaining firearms trace data, misused the information to launch “sting” operations against firearms retailers – without the knowledge of either ATF or his own police department.  Mayor Bloomberg interfered with as many as 18 on-going criminal investigations forcing ATF to pull agents out of the field for their own protection.

As the republican primary continues to heat up in Kansas, NSSF will be paying close attention and keeping you informed.