Wednesday, March 25, 2015

SD: Constitutional Carry Killed by Senate Committee

On the first of February, 2015, I wrote about a gun law reform bill introduced in the South Dakota House.   The bill included a number of reforms, including removing the restriction on the legal carry of concealed firearms by people who could legally own firearms.  The bill passed the House 44 to 23 on the 10th of February, 2015.   The bill looked like a shoo in to pass the Senate, with Republicans in the majority in the South Dakota Senate, with 27 Republicans and 8 Democrats.

But there have been a number of Republicans who are not interested in reasonable reforms of gun laws.  In the Senate Judiciary Committee, the bill was killed a month ago, on February 24th.  As is common when legislators want to hide an unpopular decision, the killing was shrouded in legislative code.  The actual vote was to defer the bill to the 41st legislative day, by 5 to 1.

From another article about another bill, the South Dakota site explains what deferring to the 41st legislative day means:
Deferring a bill to the 41st legislative day is really a way to kill it, because there is no 41st day in the legislative session. This year's legislative session is scheduled to go only 38 days, and no session is supposed to exceed 40 days.
 So, in the South Dakota legislature, voting to "defer to the 41st legislative day" is a way to dissemble about killing the bill.  The people who voted to kill the bill are recorded here, at

Moved by:    Heinert

Second by:    Novstrup (David)
Action:    Prevailed by roll call vote. (5-1-1-0)

Voting Yes:    Bradford, Heinert, Rusch, Novstrup (David), Tieszen

Voting No:    Monroe

Excused:    Vehle
Here is some more information about the people who killed the bill in committee, their political parties, and their districts.   Bradford(D) 27,  Heinert(D) 26, Rusch(R) 17, Novstrup(R) 03, Tieszen(R) 34

The lone Republican to vote for the bill was Jeff Monroe(R) district 24.

Removing the legal restrictions about carrying firearms from people who can legally own firearms has gained favor in recent years, but those who dislike the idea of armed citizens have been vigorously fighting the concept.  From 2003 to present, the number of states with constitutional carry increased from one to five.  Fourteen states have been considering bills in 2015.  West Virginia passed a bill, to have it vetoed by the Democrat Governor, Earl Ray Tomblin.  Another bill has passed the Montana legislature and is on Governor (D) Bullock's desk.   At present, Kansas looks like the most likely state to pass such legislation into law this year.

In the green states in the graphic above, if it is legal to own a gun, it is legal to carry it openly or concealed without any special permission from the state.

©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch

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