Through the now existing system, states are free to issue their own concealed carry permits and choose which other state's permits they want to recognize. "And if they were lawfully possessed in that state, bring them here into Manhattan, into Times Square".
"This bill ensures that all law-abiding citizens in our great country can protect themselves in the manner they see fit without accidentally running afoul of the law".
H.R. 38 passed the House Wednesday on a vote of 231-198. The US House Judiciary Committee [official website] approved the bill late last month despite severe opposition to the bill from 17 states [JURIST report].
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Beyond being a basic constitutional right, states that do not allow non-residents to carry concealed weapons leave these citizens in danger and with no real option for self-defense in instances of gun violence.
Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11th Dist.), whose Morristown office was picketed this week by opponents of HR 28, supported the bill. Lynn Jenkins, Roger Marshall and Kevin Yoder all voted for the measure, which has been a high priority for the National Rifle Association and other pro-gun groups.
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Road conditions will be in a poor state across the country and motorists are advised to be vigilant for ice and to slow down. Saturday is expected to be a mostly dry but very cold day with varying cloud and sunny spells.
"The first concrete action this body has taken in response the numerous gun tragedies our nation has experienced is to make it easier for people to carry hidden, loaded guns in our communities", said Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-12), a New Jersey Democrat who has strongly opposed efforts to loosen gun restrictions.
"Republicans are inviting violent criminals, domestic abusers, convicted stalkers, and those who have never undergone a background check or received any gun safety training the green light to carry their concealed weapons wherever they want", she added. But critics of the bill say it undermines each individual state's ability to set its own requirements for issuing those permits.
Ahead of the vote, former Arizona Congresswoman Gabby Giffords's pro-gun control organization held a press conference in Morristown calling on Frelinghuysen to vote no on the bill.
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The bill still needs to go to the Senate for a vote before it can become law.