September 16th, 2023

Everytown Works to Destroy Gun Rights with Nuisance Laws

Everytown gun safety PLCAA NSSF public nuisance statute

Everytown Comes Out from Behind the Curtain
By Larry Keane, NSSF Senior V.P. and General Counsel
For years, gun control organizations have been seeking to dismantle the bipartisan Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). That’s the crucial federal law shielding firearm manufacturers and sellers from frivolous lawsuits designed to bankrupt law-abiding businesses by blaming them for the criminal misuse of lawfully-sold firearms … and impose gun control through court-ordered settlements. It is what former Clinton Secretary of Labor Robert Reich dubbed “regulation through litigation”.

Gun control advocates have unsuccessfully urged Congress to repeal the law, falsely claiming it provides total immunity from all lawsuits — a falsehood regularly repeated by President Joe Biden even though the media has fact-checked him and said it is not true. In court, these groups have unsuccessfully challenged the PLCAA’s constitutionality. Attorney General Merrick Garland testified before Congress that the PLCAA was Constitutionally-sound, despite the contrary rhetoric coming from The White House and the gun ban lobby. They continue to ask courts to misapply the law’s exceptions (disproving the total immunity claim). All these efforts are designed to open up a new floodgate of frivolous litigation against the industry not seen since the late 1990s and early 2000s. It was that litigation which the bipartisan PLCAA prevents.

Now, the enemies of the Second Amendment have opened up a new line of attack on the PLCAA. Surreptitiously led by the Bloomberg-funded Everytown for Gun Safety, they have convinced a few “Blue” antigun legislatures to pass unconstitutional “public nuisance” (anti-PLCAA) statutes. These statutes attempt an end run around the PLCAA to set the table for a renaissance of reckless lawsuits against members of the industry. NSSF is challenging the Everytown-backed laws in New York, New Jersey, Delaware, California, Illinois, Washington and Hawaii.


Everytown’s masquerade as a champion of responsible firearm regulation is a sham. Their actions speak louder than their hollow words. By actively participating in “public nuisance” lawsuits and championing laws like Hawaii’s HB 426, Everytown lays plain its intention to undermine the PLCAA and smother the firearm industry with irrational restrictions that only erode the Second Amendment rights of Americans and do nothing to make communities safer. Their track record of manipulating tragic events for their own political gain is morally reprehensible.

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