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U.S. House, Senate Introduce National Right-To-Carry Bills

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From The Lehigh Valley Project 9/12 Tea Party–Second Amendment Committee

U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) on Wednesday introduced his version of interstate carry legislation, titled the “Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017,” according to a report on nraila.org. Cornyn’s bill follows an earlier release in the House by Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC) of the “Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017.”

Both bills seek to help law-abiding concealed carry permit holders from having to negotiate a confusing maze of laws, reciprocity agreements, and recognition statutes when they travel out of state. Currently, every state has its own legal mechanism for the concealed carry of handguns for self-defense. And while reciprocity or recognition of non-resident permits is the norm between many states, a handful of left-wing liberal ones that receive travelers from all over the country do not recognize permits from other states. As a result, otherwise law-abiding people can get caught in a legal crossfire, having their valuable firearms seized, and even facing felony prosecution and mandatory prison time.

Like Shaneen Allen, a single mother of two who obtained her Pennsylvania concealed carry permit after being robbed twice within a year. Or like Raymond Hughes, a corrections officer from Pennsylvania who was traveling in New Jersey when a drunk driver collided with his vehicle and sent him to the hospital.

The nraila.org article notes that their only “crimes” were failing to realize that their permits would not protect them in certain states. Yet all of them were initially subject to felony prosecution and dragged through the courts at great financial and emotional expense. Some of them even ended up with criminal records that will follow them for the rest of their lives.

As with Hudson’s bill, Cornyn’s legislation would ensure that individuals with a valid concealed carry permit or who are otherwise legally eligible to carry in their states of residence could travel interstate while carrying a concealed handgun for self-defense or other lawful purposes. Rules of behavior for carrying firearms in each state would continue to apply.

This common-sense legislation is opposed by radical gun control advocates who wrongly insist that it will allow “dangerous” people to carry guns interstate and will undermine the laws of states that severely restrict concealed carry.

Needless to say, no state has an interest in licensing dangerous people to carry firearms, and all have procedures to screen out ineligible applicants. The evidence shows, moreover, that concealed carry permit holders are some of the most law-abiding citizens in the United States. And dangerous criminals have been unlawfully carrying guns wherever they go throughout the nation’s history. All this legislation would do is put law-abiding people on equal footing with armed criminals while traveling from state to state.

It’s easy to see what the real source of opposition is. The same states that severely restrict carry by their own residents also refuse to recognize non-resident permits. These include California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island.

A robust interstate carry regime would show the residents of those states what the rest of the country has known for decades: that law-abiding people carrying concealed handguns do not cause the mayhem that gun control advocates pretend follow firearms wherever they go. In fact, life goes on as usual, just with more freedom and protection for the lawfully armed and more reason for the bad guys to think twice.

The NRA commends Sen. Cornyn for his leadership in this crucial effort and looks forward to the day when the Second Amendment right to bear arms applies to all Americans in every state of the nation.

https://www.nraila.org/articles/20170303/cornyn-introduces-the-constitutional-concealed-carry-reciprocity-act-of-2017-in-the-senate

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