SB 122 transmitted to Governor – Contact Governor

Dear MSSA Friends, SB 122, MSSA’s flagship bill to encourage the manufacture of ammunition components in Montana, has been transmitted to Governor Bullock. Please contact the Governor and urge him to sign SB 122.  The major points to hit are: 1)  SB 122 is a jobs bill.  It has the potential to create good-paying jobs […]



Dear MSSA Friends,

SB 122, MSSA’s flagship bill to encourage the manufacture of ammunition components in Montana, has been transmitted to Governor Bullock.

Please contact the Governor and urge him to sign SB 122.  The major points to hit are:

1)  SB 122 is a jobs bill.  It has the potential to create good-paying jobs in Montana in businesses that do not exist here yet.

2)  Because such businesses do not yet exist in Montana, what tax breaks are left in SB 122 will not cost Montana any lost tax revenue whatsoever.

3)  People employed in any new business under SB 122 will pay income and property taxes, and will spend the money they earn in the local economy.

4)  Ammunition components is a very big and growing market in the US, with relatively few suppliers.  Because of that, it is an activity waiting to be tapped by any state to get into the business early, as Montana would be with SB 122.

5)  Existing business in Montana that manufacture completed ammunition need the components that businesses fostered under SB 122 could provide.

I don’t think an RKBA argument (although important to us) will be persuasive to the Governor, so I wouldn’t offer that.

SB 122 will take a couple of days to go through the enrolling process before it lands on the Governor’s desk.  Now is the time to begin sending messages to Governor Bullock urging him to sign SB 122.  Feel free to contact him via ALL of the means offered.  As mentioned in an earlier email, it is possible to fax a letter from your computer via free Online fax services.

Contact the Governor


By U.S. Mail:
Steve Bullock
Governor of Montana
Capitol Station
Helena, Montana 59620

By phone:
Toll Free: 855-318-1330
FAX: 406-444-5529

Email:  "Steve Bullock" <>

Twitter: @GovernorBullock


Thanks loads for your help and support!

Gary Marbut, President
Montana Shooting Sports Association
Author, Gun Laws of Montana

Preparing for the legal aftermath of a self defense shooting

gun-and-gavel-300x196Self defense can be severely scrutinized, even more so after a firearm is used.

Below are a few links to information one should seriously consider before planning to pull the trigger in a self defense situation.


Facts About “Light Trigger Pull Liability” ~ Massad Ayoob

Gun Modifications, Light Triggers and Reloaded Ammunition

5 self defense myths that can destroy you financially!

Aftermath of a self defense shooting

10 things you should NEVER do after a self defense shooting

Aftermath of a Defensive Gun Use: A Law Enforcement Perspective

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The short list of Montana Democrats with gun common sense

democratsDemocrats are guilty by association.

The list seems to get smaller and smaller as the party agenda leans more left. Most votes in legislature, especially related to firearms, are party line related.

The D party at large in America believes that guns are for hunting, and self defense is unnecessary because people can simply call 911. Many believe that magazine capacities as well as ammunition type and quantity should be limited because you cannot handle that responsibility. A few bills banning body armor have even been introduced. Most believe that gun sales should be regulated to the extent of universal background checks a.k.a. universal gun registration. They also believe that bad guys will stop buying guns and hand in the ones they have. Ineffective gun buy back programs happen routinely around the country in D controlled states, cities and regions.

The part of this issue they more often than not either deny, refuse to address or are completely ignorant of, is that it will ultimately result in universal gun registration. A background check law would be impossible to enforce without gun registration.

We do have a few left in Montana not disgracing our culture and heritage. Be sure to give them praise in the event they support Montana gun owners rights.

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Considerations for new Montana concealed carriers

ConcealedCarryTake the poll, do you support or oppose permit-less carry in Montana?

With permit-less (Constitutional) concealed carry becoming possible with the passage of HB298 this year, the possibility of mishandled firearms and accidents increase if more people start to carry. This is a concern of many supporters and opponents of Constitutional carry in Montana if this bill passes. We have the advantage of overall high gun ownership and much more familiarity with guns and gun common sense in Montana, where nine out of ten homes have guns.

Having the ability to take a life more efficiently is a big responsibility. Please consider and apply a few things below before you decide to carry a concealed handgun.

  • Plan to train regularly before you commit. Hunters safety isn’t enough.
  • Select the right firearm. Find or make a friend who has one & try it first.
  • Select the right holster & try to avoid off body carry such as a purse.
  • Concealed means noone can see it! Don’t print GUN on your clothing.
  • Routinely put 100 rounds downrange a minimum of every 3 months.
  • Routinely clean & inspect your gun and keep it well serviced at all times.
  • Be situation aware at all times. Insure that gun cannot be taken from you.
  • Don’t fidget with your concealed gun. People see it and it wears your clothes.
  • Know the law and Prepare for the legal aftermath of a self defense shooting.
  • Practice with & understand why to use the right self defense ammunition.
  • Build consistency into your carry practices. Too much training is not possible.
  • Properly maintain your carry gun and ammunition regardless of use.
  • Understand Montana laws or the laws of states you might travel through.
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One opinion of what can we learn from the Markus Kaarma trial

kaarmaTeach your children to respect the property of others. We all know kids don’t always follow the rules and just like drunk driving the consequences can be deadly. Some things should be stressed more than others, trespassing in Montana needs to be one of them because 90% of homes have guns.

Don’t plan to kill an intruder, plan to defend you and your family from imminent danger. 

Call the authorities. Unless you are directly being threatened and need to use lethal force, don’t shoot blindly!

In this case the thieves had apparently targeted his home, whether previous thieves told them about the location and its treasures or because of “bait”. Your property should not be considered bait regardless. Using that analogy, you had better build that fence, get a guard dog, install security doors & lights as well as bar up and tint your windows because this case could mean property seen from the street could become an invitation to bad guys.

Listen to the Kaarma verdict discussion with Gary Marbut of the Montana Shooting Sports Association. Scroll directly to 23:12 for Gary’s interview.

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When all of the bad guys hand in their guns, I’ll register mine

mtgoguncontrolWhen all of the bad guys hand in their guns, I’ll willingly support legislation for universal background checks & submit to said checks for every gun purchase and sale I make.

I would do this knowing that in such a fairy tale world that this might help make the world a safer place, as long as everybody follows the rules, oh wait…

Any and all gun control laws only apply to law abiding citizens. The idea that those in favor of more gun control believe that bad guys will suddenly start following the rules is ludicrous. To their credit I will say that if you are stupid enough to believe this, you shouldn’t own guns. Please sell all of your guns to us and move to a state that requires universal background checks.

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Green Decoys, Public Land Transfer, Hunting, Shooting & Recreational Access

We all get frustrated trying to figure out where and what we can shoot and how to navigate eligible hunting and shooting areas. Once we find them, they are cherished and top secret.

The way our system currently is, nearly one swipe of the pen by a federal executive could change restrictions in a few seconds under federal ownership. If the state legislature that we voted for and influence had more control over more lands, would we not have more influence in the future use of our lands and its access? Can’t we handle this?

Our ability to access hunting, fishing, off-road travel and hiking areas becomes more elusive. Some wildlife and hunting groups, foundations and organizations use that to their advantage to build memberships and push their agenda. They may claim they are protecting your rights and want to increase access and help protect future hunts of a game species. What they may not share is that they may support gun control inadvertently by a lack of a position on primary gun control issues and say safe words such “We support the 2nd Amendment”. Unfortunately they may see universal background checks as an acceptable loss as many liberals around the country, at least during political season.

Shit or git off the pot. Take a position on specific issues or risk losing those of us who care.

Don’t be attracted to groups just because they use the words “rocky mountain”,  “foundation”, “hunting”, “conservation”, “federation”, “alliance” or “sportsmen’s” in the name of their groups. A question that weeds out some of these groups is “How do you feel about universal background checks for private firearms transactions?” If they blow you off, be suspicious. They may be on the guns are only for hunting train or they may think that you need a background check because all of the bad guys are doing it these days on their planet.

The videos below are examples of what the supporters of federal lands being obtained by the state are promoting. Are they big business trying to obtain land and is that necessarily a bad thing to consider if well regulated versus federal takeover of the entire state?






Watch this interesting video and form your own opinion. Is the idea polarizing or should we consider a serious discussion about how to build and manage a better program?


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POLL: Should federal agencies have to get permission from sheriffs before arrests, searches & seizures?

– 12/12/14

New:  Accusations and Answers.  Accusations made by opponents about Sheriffs First and answers to those accusations.

“Sheriffs First” model legislation
This “Sheriffs First” bill would make it a state crime for a federal officer to arrest, search, or seize in the state (Montana in this example) without first getting the advanced, written permission of the elected county sheriff of the county in which the event is to take place.  Locally-elected sheriffs are accountable to the people and are supposed to the the chief law enforcement officer of the county, bar none.  This bill puts teeth into the expectation that federal agents must operate with the approval of the sheriff, or not at all.  It also gives the local sheriff tools necessary to protect the people of his county, and their constitutional rights.  There are exceptions in the legislation for “hot pursuit”, U.S. customs and border patrol, corrupt sheriffs, and more.

For an MSWord (.doc) version click HERE

INTRODUCED BY ________________________



1.       Purpose.  It is the intent of the legislature to ensure maximum cooperation between federal employees and local law enforcement authorities; to ensure that federal employees who carry out arrests, searches, and seizures in this state receive the best local knowledge and expertise available; and to prevent misadventure affecting Montana citizens and their rights that results from lack of cooperation or communication between federal employees operating in Montana and properly constituted local law enforcement authorities.

2.        Declaration.  The elected sheriff of each county is the senior law enforcement officer of that county and is the most authoritative law enforcement official in the county.  The primary duties of the sheriff are to keep the peace in the county and to secure and protect the liberties and security of the residents of the county.

3.       County sheriff’s permission for federal arrests, searches, and seizures — exceptions.  (1)  A federal employee who is not designated by Montana law as a Montana peace officer may not make an arrest, search, or seizure in this state without the written permission of the sheriff or designee of the sheriff of the county in which the arrest, search, or seizure will occur unless:
(a)  the arrest, search, or seizure will take place on a federal enclave for which jurisdiction has been actively ceded to the United States of America by a Montana statute;
(b)  the federal employee witnesses the commission of a crime the nature of which requires an immediate arrest;
(c)  the arrest, search, or seizure is under the provisions of 46-6-411 (close pursuit) or 46-6-412 (customs and immigration);
(d)  the intended subject of the arrest, search, or seizure is an employee of the sheriff’s office or is an elected county or state officer; or
(e)  the federal employee has probable cause to believe that the subject of the arrest, search, or seizure has close connections with the sheriff, which connections are likely to result in the subject being informed of the impending arrest, search, or seizure.

(2)  The county sheriff or designee of the sheriff may refuse permission for any reason that the sheriff or designee considers sufficient.

(3)  A federal employee who desires to exercise a subsection (1)(d) exception shall obtain the written permission of the Montana attorney general for the arrest, search, or seizure unless the resulting delay in obtaining the permission would probably cause serious harm to one or more individuals or to a community or would probably cause flight of the subject of the arrest, search, or seizure in order to avoid prosecution.  The attorney general may refuse the permission for any reason that the attorney general considers sufficient.

(4)  A federal employee who desires to exercise a subsection (1)(e) exception shall obtain the written permission of the Montana attorney general.  The request for permission must include a written statement, under oath, describing the federal employee’s probable cause.  The attorney general may refuse the request for any reason that the attorney general considers sufficient.

(5) (a)  A permission request to the county sheriff or Montana attorney general must contain:
(i)  the name of the subject of the arrest, search, or seizure;
(ii)  a clear statement of probable cause for the arrest, search, or seizure or a federal arrest, search, or seizure warrant that contains a clear statement of probable cause;
(iii)  a description of specific assets, if any, to be searched for or seized;
(iv)  a statement of the date and time that the arrest, search, or seizure is to occur; and
(v)  the address or location where the intended arrest, search, or seizure will be attempted.
(b)  The request may be in letter form, either typed or handwritten, but must be countersigned with the original signature of the county sheriff or designee of the sheriff or by the Montana attorney general, to constitute valid permission.  The permission is valid for 48 hours after it is signed.  The sheriff or attorney general shall keep a copy of the permission request on file.

4.       Remedies.  (1)  An arrest, search, or seizure or attempted arrest, search, or seizure in violation of [section 2] is unlawful, and individuals involved must be prosecuted by the county attorney for kidnapping if an arrest or attempted arrest occurred, for trespass if a search or attempted search occurred, for theft if a seizure or attempted seizure occurred, and for any applicable homicide offense if loss of life occurred.  The individuals involved must also be charged with any other applicable criminal offenses in Title 45.
(2)  To the extent possible, the victims’ rights provisions of Title 46 must be extended to the victim or victims by the justice system persons and entities involved in the prosecution.
(3)  The county attorney has no discretion not to prosecute once a claim of violation of [section 2] has been made by the county sheriff or designee of the sheriff, and failure to abide by this mandate subjects the county attorney to recall by the voters and to prosecution by the attorney general for official misconduct.

5.       Invalid federal laws.  Pursuant to the 10th amendment to the United States constitution and this state’s compact with the other states, the legislature declares that any federal law purporting to give federal employees the authority of a county sheriff in this state is not recognized by and is specifically rejected by this state and is declared to be invalid in this state.

6.       Effective date.  [This act] is effective on passage and approval.

7.       Severability.  If a part of [this act] is invalid, all valid parts that are severable from the invalid part remain in effect. If a part of [this act] is invalid in one or more of its applications, the part remains in effect in all valid applications that are severable from the invalid applications.

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Are Montana Democrats guilty by Democrat party association?

As a gun owner, it must be very difficult to be a member of the democrat party today. Especially in states like Montana.

Once upon a time Montana democratic candidates and politicians could be trusted more to honestly support the 2nd Amendment. This was once due more so to our heritage and the sheer number of constituents who are gun owners in Montana. Those times are fading.

Saying that you support The Second Amendment is no longer enough for most gun owning voters as we’ve seen time and again that is simply not true for you.

democratMontana Democrats like Jon Tester and Steve Bullock often claim to support the Second Amendment, especially in Montana. But they fall very short when the time comes to vote or sign pro gun bills, against the national party agenda. Most will quickly give away your right to undocumented private gun ownership by supporting universal background checks aka universal gun registration. They pounce upon and politically capitalize on tragedies around the country and world to help support a tighter gun control agenda, even at the defiance of gun common sense. They disregard the fact that bad guys will never follow the rules and that these new rules would not have prevented a majority of these tragedies. Even the current NICS system rarely prosecutes bad guys who try to purchase guns through FFL holders.

They attempt to convince you that it is not universal gun registration knowing any system that requires a background check will obviously require a serial number is attached to the check with your name. There is simply no way a system like this could be enforced without it. Have we gotten to a point where our government can be trusted with such absolute power and will you still vote democrat knowing the entire party is in favor of taking your firearms freedoms? Be sure to ask your next choice for office specifically if they support or ACTIVELY OPPOSE universal background checks for private gun sales. How do you feel about it? Leave your comments below or at this Facebook post.

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Montana Active School Shooter Scenario, Observations and Preparation

The single most feared situation for most people with kids is an active shooter scenario in their children’s school. The fact that you can still simply walk right into many Montana schools without detection is very disturbing for most parents. Just like the laws that bad guys don’t comply with, a rule that you are required to check in at the office does nothing to deter a bad guy from mowing down our kids and school staff. Closing down all doors except one entrance does at least channel them into a certain area if the procedures are followed, but then what. Please put down your gun and check in at the office. That should work, right?

“But we’re in Montana, that type of thing doesn’t happen here.” I’m sure if you had the opportunity to ask any of the victims who have suffered these evil encounters the days and weeks before these events, they might say the same thing. More to come…



shootbackdadAsk your child what they think schools should do to help stop active shooters and the majority would probably say “Well duh!, Just shoot back Dad!” Most Montanans love to think that one of the reasons we live here is to help avoid big city chaos of the outside world to some extent. Complacency can quickly become a horrible tragedy.

One of the most frightening possibilities any parent has to consider no matter how remote their location, is an active shooter situation in their children’s school. People go crazy every day and Montana is not immune, especially with legal & illegal drug abuse on the rise. Is it not irresponsible to get answers to some basic questions?

armedstaffBreathe a small sigh of relief if your school has now evolved enough that they allow staff who are ready, willing, able and trained properly to carry a concealed weapon in schools. You are at least protected to some extent if nothing more than a deterrent if posted outside the building such as some schools around the country.

Have you discussed the possibility of a bad guy entering the school with a gun with your child? Are you comfortable with the school security in a worst case scenario or do you just hope to god that nothing ever happens? Have you visited and observed your child’s school for accessibility to a shooter? Can your child’s classroom be quickly and adequately secured to prevent entrance at least to their classroom if shots are heard and panic erupts? How close is their classroom to the open entrance and do they even have time to react? Does the access procedure have enormous holes in it? Does their school practice active shooter drills? These are all direct questions we should be asking our public school officials.

The fact that you can still simply walk right into most schools without resistance is disturbing. This accessibility is unrestricted in many Montana schools. Unfortunately complacency is to blame for many, if not all of these evil situations.

All school shooters to date have one thing in common, the person is mentally ill and breaking the rules, no matter how many rules there are. A piece of paper on the door requiring them to check in first is the last thing on their mind. Be sure to ask a lot of questions of your school administrators no matter how remote your child’s school.

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