U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) this week announced she is co-sponsoring a bill that, if passed into law, would allow current and retired law enforcement officers to carry concealed firearms.
As written, this bill, the Protect Our Prosecutors and Judges Act, would also apply to current and retired local, state, and federal prosecutors, as well as retired judges.
This, according to a press release that Blackburn’s staff posted on her website.
U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) and U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) are sponsoring the bill alongside Blackburn, the press release said.
“Right now, law enforcement officials are facing increased threats to their safety just for doing their jobs,” Blackburn said.
“Cities across the country have seen a spike in crime in the wake of weeks-long protests, making the thin blue line appear even thinner than usual. I am pleased to join my colleagues in this crucial effort to ensure members of law enforcement are able to protect themselves in case of emergency.”
Cotton, meanwhile, said many people have threatened judges and prosecutors for doing their jobs.
“They should be able to protect their own lives and their families,” Cotton said.
“Our bill will allow federal judges and prosecutors to defend themselves in a similar way to other law enforcement officers.”
Loeffler said prosecutors and judges make difficult decisions that can put them in harm’s way.
“In a day and age when personal information is so easily accessible online, these public servants should be able to protect themselves and their families at all times,” Loeffler said.
“I’m proud to support this commonsense legislation that extends the right to self-protection for those working for justice every day.”
The press release quoted a U.S. Marshals Service report from this year that said “threats and inappropriate comments” against protected persons increased by a magnitude of four since 2015.
Members of the National District Attorneys Association and the National Sheriffs’ Association support the legislation, according to the press release.
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