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Louisiana Governor Vetoes Bill Allowing Concealed Carry without a Permit

Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards in 2016. (Jonathan Bachman/Reuters)

Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards (D.) has vetoed a bill that would allow state residents to carry concealed handguns without a permit.

Under the new bill, all residents age 21 or older would be allowed to carry a concealed gun without a permit provided that a resident is not prohibited from obtaining a handgun under any other state or federal law. Edwards, however, said he believes current law allows for “reasonable” permit practices.

“I am a strong supporter of the Second Amendment, and an enthusiastic outdoorsman and hunter. But I simply cannot support carrying a concealed-carry firearm without proper education and safety training – and I believe the majority of Louisianans agree with me,” Edwards said in a statement on Friday following the veto.

“Simply put, it is not too much to ask that a person who wishes to carry a concealed weapon in public be required to attend basic marksmanship and safety training so they understand the regulations associated with such an action,” Edwards added.

State Senator Jay Morris, the Republican sponsor of the bill, indicated that he hoped the Louisiana legislature would override Edwards’s veto.

“This bill is for law-abiding and freedom-loving citizens,” Morris told USA Today Network. “The people of Louisiana want it and hopefully we will join our neighbors, like Texas and Mississippi, and pass constitutional carry with or without the Governor’s signature.”

Mississippi has allowed permitless carry since 2016, while Texas governor Greg Abbott signed a law last week allowing permitless carry in his state.

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Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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