Thanks to Congress, gun manufacturers are shielded against lawsuits, an extraordinary gift to a single industry and a tribute to the power that the National Rifle Association has over lawmakers.
The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), passed in 2005 and signed into law by President George W. Bush, insulates gun makers from any responsibility for the carnage their product causes.
“Everybody knew it was shilling for the NRA,” says Jim Kessler, who at the time was with Americans for Gun Safety. “It was a gift to the gun industry. It was like passing a bill to grant immunity to the pharmaceutical or tobacco industry. It was no better.”