Constitutional carry is moving forward in Idaho. Some scholars already consider Idaho a de facto Constitutional carry state, as permits are only required within city limits for concealed carry. By the same token, Second Amendment supporters find it strange that the Idaho legislature has difficulty eliminating the "city limits" exception. In 2015, Constitutional carry got bogged down in intra-Republican fighting. This year, the original bill contained language that would strip 18-20 year old residents of open carry rights they have had since Idaho became a state.
Legislators said that the open carry language was an oversight. Proponents of Constitutional carry, particularly the Idaho Second Amendment Alliance (ISAA), organized strong grassroots support, including demonstrations at the Capitol of about a thousand, and heavy lobbying to remove the offending language.
The grassroots lobbying has had an effect. A new bill, SB 1389(pdf), has been introduced, and is supported by the ISAA. It appears to have a good chance of passage. It is a compromise in a number of ways, but essentially restores Constitutional carry to Idaho. As with the recently passed Constitutional Carry legislation in West Virginia, provision is made to issue special concealed carry permits to 18-20 year old residents. Those permits can be renewed and become ordinary Idaho concealed carry permits when the resident turns 21.
The bill only removes the concealed carry restrictions for Idaho residents. Non-residents will still need a permit. Idaho recognizes permits from all other states, except Vermont, which does not issue a permit. Vermont has always had Constitutional carry. Here is some of the specific wording of the bill. From SB 1389(pdf):
(d) Outside the limits of or confines of any city, if the person is over
eighteen (18) years of age and is not otherwise disqualified from being
issued a license under subsection (11) of this section.
(4) Subsection (3) of this section shall not apply to restrict or pro-
hibit the carrying or possession of:
(a) Any deadly weapon located in plain view;
(b) Any lawfully possessed shotgun or rifle;
(c) A firearm that is not loaded and is concealed in a motor vehicle;
(d) A firearm that is not loaded and is secured in a case; and
(e) A firearm that is disassembled or permanently altered such that it
is not readily operable; and
(f) A concealed handgun by a person who is:
(i) Over twenty-one (21) years of age;
(ii) A resident of Idaho; and
(iii) Is not disqualified from being issued a license under sub-
section (11) of this section.
(5) The requirement to secure a license to carry concealed weapons un-
der this section shall not apply to the following persons:
(a) Officials of a city, county or the state of Idaho;
(b) Any publicly elected Idaho official;
It is interesting that Idaho law does not require any elected official, or any non-elected official of any city, county, or the state of Idaho, to have a permit. This might explain why legislators have been a bit hesitant to pass a Constitutional carry bill. They are already exempt from the permit process.
©2016 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.
Link to Gun Watch