HB 68 (Constitutional Carry), was killed in the House Committee on Criminal Justice in an 8-5 vote. The vote was not recorded, so we do not know who voted which way. There are 10 Republicans, 8 Democrats, and 1 independent on the committee. That is 19 members. But only 13 members voted. Who were the absent committee members? No one who knows is willing to say. From wafb.com:
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -
The House Committee on Criminal Justice shot down a bill Wednesday that would have eliminated the process for obtaining a concealed carry permit.
Representative Barry Ivey was joined by many gun rights advocates who support his bill. They say the long and costly process for obtaining a concealed carry permit violates their second amendment right.
It was not a roll call vote. That implies that the committee chair, Sherman Q. Mack (R) Dist. 95, or the Vice Chair Steve E. Pylant (R) Dist. 20, did not want a roll call vote. A commenter at legiscan.com states that this has happened several times in the past. From the comments at legiscan.com:
This bill has been shot down multuple times in the past years by the House Administration of Criminal Justice. It is time to let the poeple you represent vote on whats right for them and let this bill pass on to a vote of the people. Instead we have politicians who think they know whats best for you or police who dont want to deal with any hassle. Guess what, criminals are going to conceal anyway so this only affects law abiding citizens and the state because they count on this money. The only help we need on this one is to let us vote. There are alot of good people in this state that cant afford to take time off work ( not open on weekends)not to mention the $500.00 fee to get a lifetime concealed permit.As with many Second Amendment related reforms, there is often one or two personalities that act as roadblocks to stop them. It is the way the system works, but it also indicates that the legislative leadership is in agreement with the results. If they were not, a way around those personalities would be found. The bill could be given to another committee, for example.
While Louisiana has one of the strongest state constitutional protections for the right to bear arms, it appears that the legislature will be of little aid in restoring that right. The amendment was passed in December of 2012. From the Constitution on the State of Louisiana:
Section 11. The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms is fundamental and shall not be infringed. Any restriction on this right shall be subject to strict scrutiny.It is hard to see how permit fees and the requirement for classes to exercise a fundamental Constitutional could pass strict scrutiny. It has not come to my attention that a court in Louisiana has ruled on the requirement for either.
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