Government Documents Show Bush Administration Ignored Warnings 'Guns In Parks Rule' Violated Law
The rule, which took effect on
"These documents show that the Bush Administration ignored the procedural concerns and safety warnings of two federal agencies in pushing for a last-minute rule to allow concealed weapons in national parks. The Bush Administration apparently cared more about pleasing the gun lobby than following the law in making this post-election rule change," said Brady Campaign President
According to the Interior Department documents, the National Park Service's Chief of its Environmental Quality Division,
Then-Interior Department Secretary
The documents also show that the rule was strongly opposed by the National Park Service, whose Bush-appointed Director,
The suit charges that the Bush Administration violated several federal laws in its rush to implement the new rule before President Bush left office, including failing to conduct any environmental review of the harm that the new rule will cause, as required by the National Environmental Policy Act. The lawsuit also points out that the new rule was adopted in violation of the National Park Service Organic Act and the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act, which created the parks and wildlife refuges as protected lands for safe enjoyment of all visitors.
Rules in place since the Reagan Administration have allowed visitors to transport guns in national parks and wildlife refuges if they are unloaded and stored or dismantled. These restrictions have helped make these areas some of the safest places to visit in the country. At the behest of the gun lobby, however, the Interior Department announced last year that it planned to allow concealed firearms in national parks and wildlife refuges. The last-minute Bush rule allows the carrying of concealed weapons even in states that specifically ban the practice in state parks.
The Brady Campaign filed its lawsuit challenging the rule on
As the nation's largest, non-partisan, grassroots organization leading the fight to prevent gun violence, the Brady Campaign, with its dedicated network of Million Mom March Chapters, works to enact and enforce sensible gun laws, regulations and public policies. The Brady Campaign is devoted to creating an America free from gun violence, where all Americans are safe at home, at school, at work, and in our communities.
CONTACT: Peter Hamm 202-898-0792 firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence