For gun reciprocity bill foes, desperate times call for desperate lies
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When I introduced the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (H.R. 38) in January, I knew it would face criticism from the left. I figured I’d run into the occasional lie about nationwide concealed carry reciprocity and have intense opposition rise from liberal groups trying to restrict our Second Amendment right. But I never imagined something like this: on Sunday, New York County District Attorney Cy Vance made the absurd statement, “this bill is supported, I’m sure, by ISIS.” This type of language is especially alarming and irresponsible after Republican members of Congress were recently hunted down and shot by a liberal activist who was incited by violent leftist language.

With all due respect, the district attorney needs to educate himself on H.R. 38 before making such disparaging and false statements. He outrageously accused the 200 co-sponsors of this bill – both Democrats and Republicans – of “playing into the hand” of ISIS and other terrorists, attempting to support his point by saying terrorists can “easily obtain guns” in some states. The chief law enforcement officer should be above dishonesty and scare tactics, but I guess desperate times call for desperate lies.

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For one, nationwide concealed carry doesn’t make it any easier to buy a gun. This bill has nothing to do with the purchase of a gun. Every person who wants to buy a firearm in America would still have to go through a thorough federal background check – my bill would not change that. Contrary to his statements, my bill would empower Americans to protect themselves and their families if they ever, God forbid, face a terrorist who wants to do them harm. In short, concealed carry reciprocity is a terrorist’s worst nightmare.

My bill is simple and common sense. It would provide law-abiding citizens the right to carry concealed and travel freely between states without worrying about conflicting concealed carry state codes or onerous civil suits. It would allow a law-abiding citizen to carry concealed only if they are not federally prohibited from possessing or receiving a firearm, are carrying a valid government-issued photo ID, and are lawfully licensed or otherwise entitled to carry a concealed handgun. And, the individual would have to follow the laws of the state, county and municipality in which they are carrying concealed.

Further, the district attorney says that an individual could carry a gun anywhere in New York City and used Times Square as an example. Again, let’s look at the facts. Under my bill, local laws would still dictate where law-abiding citizens can and can’t carry a concealed firearm. If a state passes a law banning people from carrying in a bar or in a school (and all states already have statutes on the books regarding carry on secondary and elementary school campuses), then that would still stand. If the district attorney wanted to lead an effort to restrict concealed carry in Times Square or anywhere in New York City, then he’d be free to do that.

Next time, I encourage the district attorney to do his homework. He should look up the case of single mother Shaneen Allen in New Jersey. The patchwork of reciprocity laws and agreements between states is confusing and has caused law-abiding citizens like Allen to unwittingly break the law and suffer arrest and detention. The district attorney should read Article 4, Section 1 of the Constitution that requires states give “full faith and credit” to the “public acts, records and judicial proceedings of every other state.” It’s exactly why a driver’s license is recognized from state to state and we still have to follow the laws of the states we drive in. Last but not least, he should look to other sources for information rather than parrot the talking points of anti-Second Amendment crusader Michael Bloomberg who has vowed to spend millions to stop my bill.

By all means, we all have the same goal of reducing gun violence in America. The district attorney should know that using scare tactics and irresponsible rhetoric does nothing to make that a reality.

Hudson represents North Carolina’s 8th District. He is a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and is the author of the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 (H.R. 38).


The views expressed by this author are their own and are not the views of The Hill.