National Gun Carry Reciprocity Bill Passes Major Hurdle

Good news: House Republicans are one step closer on legislation that would make it much easier for Americans nationwide to exercise their Second Amendment rights.

The Washington Free Beacon reports that on Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee voted 19-11 to approve the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, which would require every state to recognize gun-carry permits lawfully issued in other states, so long as the carrier also has a valid, government-issued photo ID. However, each state would still have a say on when and where people are allowed to carry.

National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action head Chris Cox cheered the development, calling concealed-carry reciprocity the gun-rights organization’s number-one legislative priority.

“Today the House Judiciary Committee took action to protect Americans’ constitutional right to bear arms and enhance public safety,” House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) said in support of the measure. “The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act ensures that law-abiding citizens’ Second Amendment right does not end when they cross state lines.”

The Free Beacon continues:

The bill’s main sponsor, Rep. Richard Hudson (R., N.C.), said national reciprocity is necessary because of the confusing nature of the current system.

“My bill is a simple, common sense solution to the confusing hodgepodge of concealed carry reciprocity agreements between states,” Hudson said. “It will affirm that law-abiding citizens who are qualified to carry concealed in one state can also carry in other states that allow residents to do so.”

He pointed to the case of Shaneen Allen, a single mother from Philadelphia who was arrested for carrying a gun in New Jersey, as an example of the problems with the current system. After Allen legally purchased a firearm and obtained a Pennsylvania gun-carry permit, she traveled to Atlantic City to attend a birthday party for one of her sons when she was stopped by a police officer and arrested for having the gun on her person because New Jersey does not recognize gun-carry permits from her home state. Allen said she was never told and was not aware that her permit was not valid just across the Delaware River in New Jersey.

She was eventually pardoned by Gov. Chris Christie (R., N.J.), but not before losing her job and spending 40 days in jail. Allen has since become a public advocate of national gun-carry reciprocity.

Of course, while President Donald Trump would be nearly certain to sign the legislation into law, it remains to be seen whether it will reach his desk. A full vote in the House of Representatives is expected by the end of the year, and will most likely pass easily. However, it would then have to pass the Senate … where, as I’ve covered in the past for TFPP, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s fanatical refusal to touch the legislative filibuster means that pretty much any non-budgetary legislation would need a 60-vote supermajority to pass, rather than the simple majority America elected in 2016.

The filibuster has already stymied pro-life legislation and Obamacare repeal, and it’s the reason why numerous other conservative forms we spent the past decade clamoring for have been non-starters. If McConnell’s leadership claims the gun-rights cause as its next victim, do you think that will be the last straw triggering a revolt like the one that ousted House Speaker John Boehner? Let us know what you think below.