(The Hill) Police associations are beginning a major lobbying push to protect their access to the military equipment that was used against demonstrators in Ferguson, Mo.

Law enforcement groups argue a Pentagon program that provides surplus military gear helps protect the public, and they are gearing up for a fight with lawmakers and the Obama administration over whether it should be continued.

Police departments are acquiring major battlefield equipment that emboldens officials to strong-arm those they should be protecting. “Police State USA: How Orwell’s Nightmare is Becoming our Reality” (Autographed) chronicles how we got to this point.

“We are the most vigorous law enforcement advocacy group, and we intend to be at our most vigorous on this issue,” said Jim Pasco, the executive director of the Fraternal Order of Police, the largest police organization in the country.

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