The Republican-led West Virginia House voted Feb. 8 to eliminate the existing requirement for people to get concealed carry permits if they want to carry a concealed gun.
Their vote comes after Representative Saira Blair (R-Berkley) introduced the legislation, recognizing the 2nd Amendment as a sufficient carry permit for state residents aged 21 and older.
According to WSAZ, the House vote was 68 to 31 in favor of abolishing the permit requirement. The measure now heads to West Virginia’s Senate, which passed a similar bill in 2015.
West Virginia already allows handguns to be carried openly without a permit, and Republicans argue that requiring a permit simply because an individual’s coat or sweater covers the gun is tantamount to punishing a law-abiding citizen for carrying a gun that is concealed.
If the Senate passes the legislation and it is signed into law, West Virginia would join Alaska, Arizona, Kansas, Maine, Montana, Vermont, and Wyoming in allowing open or concealed carry without a permit.
But Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (D) vetoed similar legislation last year after Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America/ Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) campaigned against it.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.