GOP Lawmakers Introduce Permitless Carry for Wisconsin

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On Tuesday Representative Mary Felzkowski (R-Irma) and Senator Dave Craig (R-Town of Vernon) introduced legislation that would remove the requirement for a permit to carry concealed in Wisconsin.

Open carry without a permit is already the law of the land in Wisconsin. Felzkowski and Craig’s bill–LRB 2039/1, or “Right to Carry Act”–would simply make the laws governing concealed carry congruent with those governing open carry.

According to Urban Milwaukee, the “Right to Carry Act” has 39 co-sponsors.

Senator Craig explained the motivation behind the bill:

At its essence, this bill does two things: removes barriers to the exercise of a constitutional right and simplifies the law. If you decide to carry a weapon to protect yourself or your family, you should be able to do so easily – without bureaucratic hurdles and without cost.

We already give people the ability to openly carry a firearm without a license. With this bill, law-abiding citizens will have the same right to carry discreetly that they currently have to carry openly. If you decide to throw on a coat, you should not be considered a criminal.

It is worth noting that New Hampshire abolished its requirement for a carry permit earlier this year by appealing to the same bureaucratic inconsistency; namely, the inconsistency of recognizing open carry without a permit as legal but requiring a permit if a law-abiding citizen puts on clothing that covers the gun.

The NRA-ILA reports:

[The “Right to Carry Act”] would eliminate…government mandates, and allow individuals to carry in a manner that best suits their needs.  Under current law, an individual can carry a firearm openly without a concealed carry license; however, if an individual would rather carry their firearm in a purse or briefcase, or if their firearm becomes covered by a coat, they would be in violation of current concealed carry laws unless they obtained a concealed carry license. This bill recognizes a law-abiding adult’s unconditional Right to Keep and Bear Arms for self-defense in the manner he or she chooses.

There are currently 12 states–counting New Hampshire–that are designated as permitless carry. The other 11 are Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Vermont, Wyoming, and West Virginia. Gun Owners of America also counts Arkansas and Montana as permitless carry states, because the vast majority of both states–99.4 percent–allow concealed carry without a permit.

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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