Montana AG leads state pushback against Mexico gun lawsuit

(The Center Square) – Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen is leading a coalition of states in defending American firearm makers from being held responsible for Mexico’s gun violence.

The government of Mexico says gun companies should be responsible for gun violence there because manufacturers know some of their products are trafficked into Mexico. In January, the First Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Mexico could sue U.S. companies over this issue, but Knudsen’s coalition wants the United States Supreme Court to reverse that decision. According to Knudsen, the 2005 Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) protects firearms companies from being found responsible for crimes involving their products. 

“Rather than take responsibility, Mexico and anti-gun activists are trying to blame and bankrupt American companies that follow the law,” said Knudsen in a press release. “The appeals court erred in their decision and the Supreme Court needs to correct it.”

A Massachusetts district court rejected the case. Mexico then appealed that decision to the First Circuit. 

In its brief to the U.S. Supreme Court, the coalition wrote that Mexico has “flung its border open” and sought to extort money from the United States to do something about the situation. 

“Mexico should not be permitted to exert de facto control over the rights of American citizens to alleviate the consequences of its own policy choices,” wrote the attorneys general. 

In addition to Knudsen and Montana, attorneys general from Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming joined the brief, along with the Arizona Legislature.