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Biden Backs Police Funding In State of The Union, Misstates Gun Law

President Biden related a faulty Democratic talking point about guns in his first State of the Union speech, the Associated Press reports. Biden asked Congress to pass measures to reduce gun violence, saying, “Repeal the liability shield that makes gun manufacturers the only industry in America that can’t be sued, the only one.” While gun manufacturers do have legal protections from being held liable for injuries caused by criminal misuse of their weapons under the 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, they are not exempt or immune from being sued. The law lays out exceptions where manufacturers or dealers can be held liable for damages their weapons cause, such as defects or damages in the design of the gun, negligence, or breach of contract or warranty regarding the purchase of a gun. Families of victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Ct., sued gun maker Remington, alleging “wrongful marketing” of firearms, and have agreed to a $73 million settlement.

Biden drew bipartisan applause, including from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), for his calls to fund the police, Politico reports. “We should all agree: The answer is not to defund the police. It’s to fund the police,” Biden said to strong applause, with cameras showing McCarthy and House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) clapping and giving him a standing ovation. “Fund them. Fund them. Fund them with resources and training.” Biden touted funding from the American Rescue Plan — the pandemic relief package passed under his watch — that local governments can use to bolster police forces.


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