Rep. Richard Hudson has tried to pass his Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act for years, and a recent victory with the House Judiciary Committee may mean the bill will pass a House vote on Wednesday.
Right now, law-abiding citizens with concealed carry licenses can be arrested simply for crossing state lines with their firearm.
The new bill would would make concealed carry permits valid across state lines, so we don’t have the odd situation of a perfectly lawful citizen in one state being arrested, without any change of behavior, in another.
Fox News reports:
“This is just simple, common-sense legislation that says if you’re a law-abiding citizen … we’re not going to turn you into a criminal just for crossing an invisible state line,” bill sponsor Rep. Richard Hudson, R-N.C., told “Fox News @ Night.”
Hudson says the bill simply attempts to clarify the patchwork of state laws that confuse citizens who can unwittingly get arrested when traveling from state to state.
“All I’m saying is, when I cross the state line, I don’t want to automatically become a criminal,” he said.
The three-term congressman also is quick to point out the measure does not attempt to usurp state and local authority with federal law, nor does it ease background checks on gun purchases.
The bill has 213 cosponsors, including three Democrats, and backing from 24 state attorneys general.
Hudson has tried for several years to get his Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act passed and scored a victory several days ago when it got through the House Judiciary Committee.
The full House is set to vote on Wednesday.
A House victory is expected, but passing a Senate vote will prove to be more challenging.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is adamantly opposed to the bill, and according to Fox News, Michael Bloomberg is donating $25 million to oppose the bill:
Schumer, in the wake of the Las Vegas massacre in October, slammed such reciprocity legislation and the NRA’s support.
“Under this law, if Wyoming or Alabama said any person could carry a concealed gun, they could come to Times Square, Penn Station carrying that gun — concealed,” he said. “The chaos that would result would be utterly amazing.”
Either Sen. Schumer is ignorant about the facts of concealed carry licenses or he’s deliberately manipulating people who are.
A comprehensive study published by the American Journal of Public Health concludes that “CHL [concealed handgun license] holders were much less likely than nonlicensees to be convicted of crimes. Most nonholder convictions involved higher-prevalence crimes (burglary, robbery, or simple assault).”
The notion that there’d be “chaos” resulting from concealed carry licenses crossing state lines is plainly ridiculous.
Why on earth would any criminal go through the trouble of taking classes, filing out paper work, etc., to obtain a permit?
Has anyone told Schumer about pockets? Has he heard of pants? Surely he’s aware that hiding a gun is easy as pie. Doing it legally is hard. So are criminals going to do it the easy way or the hard way?
Bearing Arms adds:
The House shouldn’t be a problem, but the Senate will be.
However, even there, it’s not improbable that some Democrats will side with the bill. For one thing, Democrats in rural or other pro-gun areas may find that opposing the Second Amendment is hazardous to their reelection chances.
Another possibility is a bit of quid pro quo. In other words, A Republican convinced the Democrat to vote for this bill in exchange for the Republican’s support on another matter.
But what we do know is that we’ll soon be one step closer to a saner system of laws regarding concealed carry since a permit for one state will be good for all.
Critics of the bill have made all kinds of extraordinary claims, including that the bill will allow criminals to walk the streets armed. There are some seriously stupid people out there who believe stuff like that. Meanwhile, they ignore the fact that concealed carry license holders are invariably among the most law-abiding people out there.
Of course, most of those who say this are either willfully ignorant or they’re lying. They simply don’t like the idea of armed citizens and they’ll tell any whopper they can think of to prevent there being more of them. Plain and simple.
Meanwhile, the criminals continue to carry firearms without regard for any law or regulation. They obtain them and use them regardless of what lawmakers try to impose, and they use them despite every legal code banning their activities. It’s almost like criminals don’t follow the law or something.
If the bill does pass through both the House and the Senate, this will be a major victory for the Second Amendment and American citizens everywhere who don’t like being arrested when they’ve done nothing wrong.