Rep. Richard Hudson (R-NC) told Breitbart News that it is time for Congress to listen to the overwhelming majority of Americans and pass national reciprocity for concealed carry.
Hudson was being interviewed on December 4 for the upcoming episode of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, when he said, “We’re going to have national reciprocity legislation on the House Floor probably Wednesday of this week. …[The] 73 percent of Americans who want to see reciprocity are finally going to have their day on the House floor.”
Hudson’s reciprocity legislation, Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 (H.R. 38), was introduced on January 3, 2017. It treats concealed carry permits like driver’s licenses inasmuch as it makes a permit from one state valid in the other 49. The goal is to free the common man from the cumbersome and often confusing patchwork of concealed carry laws in place around the nation.
For example, a concealed carry permit holder in Kentucky driving to St. Louis for Christmas is not able to carry his firearm with him while in Illinois. In fact, he is not even permitted to have his gun in his vehicle, even though he has a concealed carry permit from Kentucky, and this is because Illinois only recognizes its own carry permit. The NRA-ILA reports Illinois state law on gun possession: “It is unlawful to carry or possess any firearm in any vehicle or concealed on or about the person, except on one’s land or in one’s abode or fixed place of business, without a license.”
So what is the common man to do? His Kentucky permit is valid in Indiana and Missouri, but if he is driving I-64 he cannot go from Indiana to St. Louis without crossing through Illinois. This creates a dilemma that crushes the exercise of Second Amendment rights and Hudson’s bill eliminates that dilemma by making the Kentucky permit as valid in Illinois as it is in Louisville, Lexington, or Bowling Green, Kentucky.
Hudson told Breitbart News he was motivated to undertake this cause because of Shaneen Allen, a Pennsylvania mother of two who was arrested during a 2015 traffic stop in New Jersey for possessing a handgun for which she had a concealed carry permit and proper registration. Breitbart News reported, “Although the gun had been acquired legally and the paperwork was in order, Allen faced up to 10 years in prison because New Jersey does not recognize the Pennsylvania carry permit. She was ultimately pardoned by Governor Chris Chritie (R) and spared the agony of prison for carrying a gun to defend herself and her children.”
How did we reach a point where a person can legally buy and carry a gun in one state yet be treated like a criminal if they drive across a state line with the firearm still in their possession?
Hudson’s H.R. 38 fixes this mess by making the permit of one state valid in every state. His bill reached 212 co-sponsors by September 28, 2017, and is headed into Wednesday’s floor vote with momentum, yet more work is needed. Hudson said, “You can never take anything for granted. We’ve got the votes going in, but I’d like to have a few more votes, I’d feel more comfortable.” He urged Americans to contact their Reps. and ask them to vote for H.R. 38 on Wednesday.
AWR Hawkins is an award winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News, the host of the Breitbart podcast Bullets, and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for the Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange