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Posted: 10/31/2004 3:06:07 PM EST
Mr. President, we have possibly one other Senator wishing to come to speak. Let me check on that. If that is not true, I see no reason we couldn't reserve the remainder of our time or move on to another amendment.

[Page: S1639] GPO's PDF
I yield the floor.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Massachusetts.

Mr. KENNEDY. Mr. President, I just want to remind the Senate what we have just heard. It is a wonderful technique. I don't disparage my friend from Idaho, and he is my friend.

But that is to misrepresent what the amendment does and then to differ with it.

I have been here several years and I know that technique. It is one that I have used once in a while.

People ought to understand, when we are talking about life and death, we ought to be willing to at least deal with the facts.

The facts are as described in the amendment about what the definition would be in terms of the armor-piercing bullets. That talks about a projectile for centerfire rifles designed or marketed as having an armor-piercing capability that the Attorney General determined pursuant to the section 926(d) to be more likely to penetrate body armor than standard ammunition of the same caliber, period.

Armor-piercing bullets--as my good friend says, wants to eliminate all ammunition for these weapons and, therefore, they will just be relics on the shelves of time.

This is what it is; it is written into the amendment: a projectile for centerfire rifles designed or marketed as having armor-piercing capability that the Attorney General determines--not the Senator from Massachusetts, not the Senator from Idaho--but the one that has the capability to more likely penetrate body armor.

That is what we are talking about--penetrating body armor that law enforcement officers wear and which stands between their life and their death.

That is what this amendment does. We have already seen and sadly reviewed the statistics that are out there now about the brave officers who have already been killed. We will have an opportunity to do something about that on Tuesday next. Let us not fail to do so.

Over the weekend, if there is language that is necessary to ensure that particular purpose can be achieved with more effective language, let me give the assurance to the Senator from Idaho and others interested who take that position that we are more than glad to work that out.

We will not compromise on dealing with the fundamental issue; and that is armor-piercing bullets penetrating those vests or put at risk the lives of brave officers today and in the future.

I withhold the remainder of my time. I saw the Senator from the State of Washington who I believe is ready to move ahead. I will either yield back my time or retain my time.

Link Posted: 10/31/2004 3:09:42 PM EST


Mr. CRAIG. Let me respond to the Senator's inquiry. I don't disagree with him. I think it is important we do have some limited time to discuss the difference between his amendment and what will be known as the Frist-Craig amendment that will be offered in a few moments. That is important.

I think we have all heard the Senator from Massachusetts very clearly. He said he wants to ban assault weapons and rifle ammunition. What he didn't say, or what he will not say, is that the standards he establishes in his legislation, performance-based standards, ban what is currently on-the-shelf hunting ammunition. Does the hunting ammunition in a high-powered rifle have the ability to penetrate soft body armor? Yes, it does.

Does it have the ability to penetrate other soft armor? Yes, it does. Is it used for that purpose? No. It is rarely ever found used for that purpose.

Link Posted: 10/31/2004 3:13:14 PM EST
disturbing
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