U.S.A. –-(AmmoLand.com)- Louisiana is in play to pass a Constitutional Carry bill in 2021. SB 118 has passed a crucial Senate Committee. It is scheduled to go to the floor of the Senate on 21 April 2021. It seems likely to pass the Senate.
Senate Bill 118 requires the person who would carry without a permit to be 21 years old, or older. It requires a person who is approached by a law enforcement officer to disclose they are carrying a concealed weapon. It prohibits the carrier from being under the influence of alcohol.
These requirements are not required for people who carry handguns openly in Louisiana.
The legislators are aware of how much fearmongering has been attached to such legislation in the past. From leesvilledailyleader.com:
“It’s a law that’s time has come,” Zelenka said. “You’re going to hear testimony that the sky will fall and blood will flow through the streets if you pass this bill. Those dire predictions have proven to have been unfounded.”
Experts testified that the costs of the current required nine-hour training course, other fees and fingerprints range from $225 to $325.
A similar bill by Rep. Danny McCormick, R-Oil City, will get a hearing in a House committee
This correspondent was able to speak with Rep Danny McCormick. He believes his bill, HB16 is superior to SB118. HB16 removes the prohibition on carrying concealed weapons from people who are 18 years of age or older, and who may legally possess firearms. HB16 does not include a duty to disclose to law enforcement officers. It does not add a prohibition on consuming alcohol.
HB16 is expected to come up in the House Committee on the Administration of Criminal Justice on Wednesday, 27 April, 2021.
Rep McCormick says one of the reasons for his election was his adamant support for Constitutional carry. He has connected with 7,000 people whose primary issue is to pass Constitutional Carry.
Louisiana has a population of about 4.7 million people. Arizona has a population of about 7.3 million people. Less than 5,000 dedicated activists were able to effectively lobby for Constitutional Carry in Arizona in 2010. It should be easier to pass Constitutional Carry through the legislature in Louisiana, in 2021.
There is support for a version of Constitutional Carry among Louisiana peace officers. From Ouishitacitizen.com:
West Monroe Police Chief Jeff Terrell said he was personally in support of the legislation.
“Based on my reading of the Constitution, it says you can keep and bear arms,” Terrell said. “The founders made it clear. Restrictions don’t hurt anyone but law-abiding citizens. When you look at it, the people that are not going to follow the law, are criminals. They’re going to carry whether the law says they can or cannot.”
Louisiana Republicans have supermajorities in the House and the Senate. The House has a 68 Republicans v 35 Democrats. The Senate has 27 Republicans to 12 Democrats.
The Governor is Democrat John Bel Edwards, who says he is a staunch supporter of the Second Amendment.
There is a reasonable chance for passage of Constitutional Carry in Louisiana in 2021. The key is to bring the legislation up for a vote. Republicans will be reluctant to vote against a Second Amendment bill while President Biden is in office.
The election of President Biden has people concerned about their Second Amendment rights.
A few years ago, Louisiana passed a strong state Constitutional amendment protecting the right to keep and bear arms. Constitutional Carry would be the legislature passing legislation that complies with the requirement of the Louisiana Constitution.
About Dean Weingarten:
Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of Constitutional Carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.