Concealed Carry Reciprocity Debate Heating Up In House
Washington, DC –-(Ammoland.com)- On Tuesday, the U.S. House voted in favor of a procedural motion to allow concealed carry legislation to come to the floor for a vote on Wednesday.
The bill, H.R. 822, is intended to honor the American peoples’ right to keep and bear arms when traveling from state to state.
But while well-intentioned, H.R. 822 contains several flaws.
Vermont Gun Owners Cut Out of Bill
For starters, the bill does not protect Vermont-style carry. Residents of that state do not need a permit in order to exercise their right to carry a firearm. But in order to benefit from the reciprocity bill, Vermonters would be forced to obtain a permit.
When GOA pointed out this problem, supporters of the legislation said Vermont residents can “just get an out-of-state permit.”
But that answer is unacceptable.
Why should existing liberties be sacrificed in the rush to pass a faulty bill? Why should a state with exemplary gun laws be, in effect, “punished” for being too pro-gun?
Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) offered a real solution to this issue with his bill, HR 2900. Rep. Broun’s bill protects the Vermont law and those of states that follow Vermont’s lead.
Click here to email your Representative
Protect Constitutional Carry
Constitutional Carry, wherein citizens can carry a firearm without first having to prove their worthiness to the police or government bureaucrats, is spreading to states around the country.
Alaska, Arizona and Wyoming now have Constitutional Carry laws based on the Vermont model. Montana passed such a law that covers 98% of the state, and Texas passed a “constitutional carry lite” law that applies to firearms carried in a vehicle.
These new laws represent the efforts of hundreds of thousands of grassroots gun owners working in their states to restore their constitutional rights.
The bill coming to the floor on Wednesday will deter such efforts by requiring state residents to possess a permit in order to be able to carry interstate.
The Broun bill is Constitutional Carry-friendly and would not undermine the work underway in many states to pass laws similar to Vermont’s.
Pass the Best Bill Possible
Supporters of H.R. 822 argue that this bill is the best that can be passed. That pragmatic argument is simply not true.
In 2009, a Senate bill virtually identical to H.R. 2900 garnered 58 votes. And that was before the last election, which improved the Senate significantly.
The “best bill possible” is the one that already has the votes in the Senate to pass. The supporters of H.R. 822 instead chose to move a weaker bill in the chamber where gun owners have more support.
Supporters of H.R. 822 also want NO amendments (even ones that are pro-gun) to pass to the underlying bill. But an amendment is exactly what is needed to correct the deficiencies in this bill.
Contact Your Representative Right Away
Please take action quickly, as this bill is set to come to the floor on Wednesday afternoon.
GOA has provided a prewritten message you can send asking your Representative to cosponsor H.R. 2900 and to urge the House leaders to fix the flaws in the concealed carry reciprocity bill.
Click here to email your Representative.Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102
Springfield, VA 22151
Gun Owners of America (GOA) is a non-profit lobbying organization formed in 1975 to preserve and defend the Second Amendment rights of gun owners. GOA sees firearms ownership as a freedom issue. `The only no comprise gun lobby in Washington’ – Ron Paul