WASHINGTON, — “We commend the United States Senate for voting earlier this week to allow cargo pilots to carry guns in the cockpit,” John Michael Snyder, public affairs director of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA), said here today.

On a unanimous consent agreement late Monday night the Senate passed S. 1657, by Sen. Jim Bunning (R-Ky.), a CCRKBA Congressional Advisor, with Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) as cosponsor, to close the loophole in the law, enacted last year, which allows commercial airline passenger pilots, but not cargo pilots, to carry guns in the cockpit if they volunteer for a federal program which includes a week of specialized training.

Snyder, named Dean of gun lobbyists by national media, noted that, “our country is at war with militant, radical Islamist terrorists. Just last week, according to reports, the Homeland Security Department issued warnings to police that Al-Qaeda may be conspiring to fly cargo planes into American nuclear plants, bridges, dams or other targets.

“When push comes to shove, there’s nothing quite like a handgun for self-defense. Our pilots need to be able to protect themselves and their aircraft from the terrible terrorist threat. The Senate did the proper thing when it passed this measure. We now encourage the House of Representatives to take up this bill at the earliest possible time, promptly pass it, and send it down Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House where we understand President George W. Bush is ready to sign it into law.”