Update: GOP Gun Bill Causes Fears Over State Rights Violations

July 22, 2009

US (ChattahBox) – A new bill that would allow gun owners with a concealed weapons permit to cross state lines with the same permit is set to be voted on today (Wednesday). While gun lobbyists and pro-gun activists are hoping to push through the measure, many more are speaking out against it.

“Passage of the amendment would make it much harder for law enforcement to distinguish between legal and illegal possession of a firearm. It would be a boon for illegal gun traffickers, making it easier to transport weapons across state lines without being caught.”

So said an editorial posted by The New York Times, and the risk is a valid one.

Different states withhold varying standards on the issue, though most allow you the ability to gain a concealed weapons permit under their own laws. But if this passes, it would override the individual standards of these states, giving precedence to those with less stringent policies on the matter.

Senator John Thune (R-SD) is the man behind the plan, in what he believed to be a necessary amendment to the existing military budget bill.

Thune has stated that it would not violate the rights of any other states, as the 48 that allow concealed weapons are the only ones that the bill would effect.

What he fails to mention is that South Dakota allows many more to carry permits than most other states, which have rules that prohibit certain people from obtaining them. For instance, habitual drug or alcohol users, people with non-gun related violent crime convictions, or sex offenders who target both adults and children.

“The visitors can ignore the law of the state, the law that the elected representatives of the people of that state have enacted,” Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill), was quoted during his dissent statement by The Huffington Post.

The bill must pass a 60-vote majority before being enacted. But lobbyists have been heavily backing the measure, making it more likely to pass then would normally be expected.

Update: A strong majority of the Senate, in a 58-39 vote, supported the measure, but the tally was two votes short of the 60 votes needed to add the measure as an amendment to a defense bill.


2 Responses to “Update: GOP Gun Bill Causes Fears Over State Rights Violations”

  1. Mike R. on July 22nd, 2009 12:25 pm

    Criminals do not obey laws. They ignore laws regarding theft, even murder. They also ignore gun laws. That’s what makes them criminals.

    Why are politicians so scared of legal concealed-carry permit holders who have made the effort to obey the law, and, due to the fact that they got the permit, are not criminals?

    Is it an effort to discourage the idea of self-defense, and make everyone dependent on The State and Authority? It has to be, because it makes no sense otherwise.

    Criminals do not obey laws. Including gun laws.

  2. Publius on July 22nd, 2009 12:58 pm

    I found some of the assertions in this article questionable, so I did a little homework. Specifically, the requirements for obtaining a concealed pistol permit in South Dakota. The article warns of people who are, “habitual drug or alcohol users, people with non-gun related violent crime convictions, or sex offenders who target both adults and children” as people who could get a concealed pistol permit in South Dakota, and then carry in less permissive states. Some of the SD requirements include:
    – Has never pled guilty to, nolo contendere to, or been convicted of a felony or a crime of violence;
    – Has no history of violence;
    – Is not habitually in an intoxicated or drugged condition;
    – Has had no violations of chapter 23-7, 22-14, or 22-42(controlled substances) constituting a felony or misdemeanor in the five years preceding the date of application or is not currently charged under indictment or information for such an offense;

    So immediately, off the bat, all the dangerous types of people they list are eliminated, excepting sex offenders who were convicted of nonviolent sex related crimes that were misdemeanors. In South Dakota this means four crimes: prostitution, pimping, solicitation, and first offense statutory rape of a victim within 5 years of age of the accused.

    News people really need to do their homework and check their facts before they go off and write articles with this level of misinformation. From what I can tell some people were concerned about individuals getting concealed carry permits in SD when they were not eligible for them because SD’s background checks were poorly conducted. This is a serious issue that is only muddied and obscured by false claims about their rules and laws for obtaining permits.

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