For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Peter Hamm,
Communications Director
Doug Pennington,
Assistant Director: 202-898-0792.

Next Interior Secretary Should Rescind Bush Rule Allowing Concealed Guns In Parks

WASHINGTON - The Brady Campaign today urged Senator Ken Salazar, if confirmed by the Senate to serve as the Obama Administration's Secretary of the Interior, to initiate steps to rescind a rule rushed out this month by the Bush Administration that threatens to make America's national parks less safe for visitors.

In a holiday gift to the gun lobby, the Interior Department finalized approval for a new rule that will allow more people, even potentially dangerous ones, to carry loaded, hidden handguns at all National Park Service Units. The regulations replace a Reagan-era rule that requires Park visitors to keep guns unloaded and stowed away.

President-Elect Obama has spoken out in the past about permissive concealed carry regulations. The National Park Service rule is scheduled to take effect in early January.

"When people go to our national parks, they don't want to worry about who is packing a picnic and who is packing heat," said Paul Helmke, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. "This new rule will make our parks less safe, and it should be rescinded."

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