Jewish groups: D.C. voting rights undermine gun laws


WASHINGTON (JTA) — More than a dozen Jewish groups opposed any attempt to use a voting rights bill to ease the regulation of guns in the U.S. capital.

Seventeen Jewish organizations were among 32 faith-based groups that signed a letter to the House of Representatives released Wedensday opposing "in the strongest terms" any amendment to the Washington voting rights bill that would "undermine the District’s ability to regulate firearms."

The letter, organized by the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, states, "We believe duly-elected District officials should have a fair and reasonable opportunity to develop and implement new locally specific regulations. It would be unconscionable of the House of Representatives to approve such an amendment and impose its will on the residents of the District of Columbia."

"As faith inspired organizations, we must actively pursue a world free from bloodshed," reads the letter.

Many of the same groups — which include the Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements, the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Commitee and Hadassah, among others — signed an almost identical letter to the Senate last month, which attached an amendement to the final legislation repealing most of Washington’s gun control laws.

The legislation would add two voting seats in the House of Representatives, one for Washington and one for Utah.

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