Soros Spends Nearly $9 Million Lobbying, Now Targets Guns
Billionaire financier wants to make gun companies liable for criminal acts by third parties
Liberal billionaire George Soros's advocacy organizations are lobbying lawmakers on Capitol Hill to repeal an act protecting firearms manufacturers from liability for gun crimes including murder, disclosure forms show.
The Open Society Policy Center is Soros's D.C.-based 501(c)4 nonprofit that works on domestic and international advocacy and is affiliated with the much larger Open Society Foundations. The center has poured nearly $9 million into lobbying a range of issues so far this year.
Soros's group reported spending $2.6 million on lobbying throughout the first quarter, covering international, military, and appropriations issues. In addition, the center moved into gun control advocacy and reported lobbying on "issues related to a bill to repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act."
The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) was passed as a bulwark against frivolous lawsuits attempting to hold gun companies responsible for criminal acts committed by third parties—sometimes decades after the first legal sale of the firearm.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation, the gun industry's trade group, pushed to pass the bill in 2005. The group said the legal protections are necessary to keep gun control activists from bankrupting the industry through suits they believe have no legal standing.
"The National Shooting Sports Foundation worked with Congress to get the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act passed with broad bipartisan support and signed into law by President George W. Bush," Mark Oliva, a spokesman for the group, told the Washington Free Beacon. "This law correctly protects the firearms industry against frivolous lawsuits that seek claims against manufacturers for the criminal misuse of a firearm. Those who commit crimes with a firearm are the ones who bear the responsibility for the horrific effects of their actions. The PLCAA ensures this is the case."