Reciprocity Passed The House But Will It Pass The Senate

Ian Argent, in a guest post at Shall Not Be Questioned, has run the numbers on HR 38 to see the chances it will pass in the Senate. He compared how the Senate voted on a proposal for carry reciprocity put forth by Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) in 2013 and how he expects them to vote now.

Starting with the 2013 vote (57 Ayes to invoke cloture), I did up a spreadsheet of the likely vote results in 2017, based on current occupancy, the 2013 vote, and the Senators political stances on the issue.

I came out with maximum of 59 Aye votes (assuming Luther Strange gets to vote Aye or his replacement votes Aye).

The vote delta (because we had both gains and losses)

NH: -1 (Maggie Hassan replaced Kelly Ayotte)

IA: +1 (Joni Ernst replaced Tom Harkin)

SD: +1 (Mike Rounds replaced Tim Johnson)

WV: +1 (Shelley Moore replaced John Rockefeller)

However, what I don’t see is the 60th vote. I broke out the Nay votes who are in seats up in 2018 in states that voted for Trump

Bill Nelson is a hard NO
Claire McCaskill is a hard NO
Sherrod Brown is a hard NO
Bob Casey is a firm No
Tammy Baldwin is a hard NO

Unfortunately, I think Ian is correct. So long as the Senate has the filibuster on everything but judicial nominees, then 60 votes are going to be required.

I was looking at the vote in the House on HR 822 back in 2011. It was interesting to compare that with the vote on HR 38. HR 38 passed the House last week by a vote of 231-198. The ayes included 6 Democrats and 225 Republicans while the nays included 184 Democrats and 14 Republican. By contrast, the vote back in 2011 was 272-154 in favor of passage. The big difference can be attributed to 43 Democrats voting in favor of concealed carry reciprocity.

Of those 43 Democrats who voted in favor of concealed carry reciprocity in 2011, many are no longer in the House. A couple such as Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and Joe Donnelly (D-IN) have moved on to the Senate. In fact, they were two of the Democrats who voted in favor of Cornyn’s bill in 2013. What is disturbing, however, are the 13 Democrats who voted in favor of reciprocity in 2011 who voted no on it in 2017 even though the bill contained the Fix NICS Act. What made them switch their vote on reciprocity for an aye to a nay? Did the Democrats crack the whip on those members or was it that they were warned that they would have a primary opponent funded by Mike Bloomberg?

If any of the these 13 are your representative in Congress, I’d be asking why.

  1. Andre Carson (D-IN)
  2. Jim Cooper (D-TN)
  3. Joe Courtney (D-CT)
  4. Peter DeFazio (D-OR)
  5. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) (though he was a surprise aye vote)
  6. Brian Higgins (D-NY)
  7. Rick Larsen (D-WA)
  8. Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM)
  9. Tim Ryan (D-OH)
  10. Terri Sewell (D-AL)
  11. Adam Smith (D-WA)
  12. Tim Walz (D-MN)
  13. Gene Green (D-TX)

National Right To Carry Reciprocity And The Senate

Now that HR 822 has passed the House of Representatives in overwhelming fashion, it moves to the Senate. Unless I am greatly mistaken, there is significant pressure on senators from both sides of the debate. The Brady Campaign is ramping up the pressure with an auto-mailer campaign asking senators to vote no. Nonetheless, even they admit they don’t have the votes to stop it.

I sent an email today to Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC) about the bill. While I have no worries that Sen. Richard Burr will be a solid backer of the bill, Hagan can be wishy-washy despite her claims of being a Second Amendment supporter. What surprised me was that I got an email back from her office almost immediately discussing her stance – if you could call it that – on the bill. If she hadn’t been getting lots of mail on the issue, she wouldn’t have been so prepared to issue something other than a generic thank you for your letter response.

Dear Friend,

Thank you for contacting me regarding National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act (H.R. 822). I appreciate hearing your thoughts on this important issue.

This bill was introduced in the House of Representatives on February 18, 2011, and was referred to the House Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security.

If enacted, the bill would allow any person with a valid state-issued concealed firearm permit to carry their firearm in any other state that also issues concealed firearm permits. Currently, 48 states, including North Carolina, have laws permitting residents to carry concealed firearms.

While H.R. 822 has yet to reach the Senate, I pledge to keep your thoughts on this issue in mind. My family, like the great state of North Carolina, has a long tradition of hunting and gun ownership, and I take great pride in that heritage. I have opposed requiring gun owners to obtain federal licenses or creating a federal system to track gun sales and transfers, as I believe these proposals would infringe this important constitutional right. I will continue to support the rights guaranteed under the Second Amendment.

Again, thank you for contacting my office. It is truly an honor to represent North Carolina in the United States Senate, and I hope you will not hesitate to contact me in the future should you have any further questions or concerns.


Kay R. Hagan

If you haven’t already done it, it is time to contact both of your state’s senators and urge them to vote for the National Right-To-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011. I wouldn’t want to think that our voices could be drowned out by an auto-mailer run by the Brady Campaign.

It Is A Shame When Sad Pandas Have To Lie

As might be expected, the Brady Campaign released a statement yesterday condemning the passage by the House of HR 822 – the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011. The statement is replete with plays to emotion, the parsing of language to create the wrong impression, and at least one outright lie.

Let’s look at the first part of the statement.

Washington, D.C. – Just hours after Gabby Giffords spoke publicly for the first time and shared her painful but remarkable story of recovery from being shot in the head, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would force states to allow dangerous, violent and untrained gun owners from out-of-state to carry loaded, hidden guns in virtually every state.

The National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act, H.R. 822, is the first major gun bill taken up and passed by the House since the January 8 Tucson shootings and is an affront to victims of gun violence everywhere, especially those who have lost their lives and been wounded since the Tucson tragedy. The bill the Brady Campaign has named the “Packing Heat on Your Street Act,” passed despite concerns about overriding states’ rights from moderate Democrats and some Republicans.

The battle over the legislation now moves to the U.S. Senate.

“This legislation is so dangerous that it would trample a state’s ability to set its own rules and training requirements concerning who carries loaded, hidden guns in public and override basic state possession laws setting minimum age limits to possess handguns,” said Dennis Henigan, Acting President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. “It’s deplorable that the first major gun legislation passed by a house of Congress since the Tucson shootings is one that would make it easier for the Jared Loughners of the world to pack heat on our streets and in our communities. It’s deplorable that they did this so soon after Gabby Giffords shared her remarkable and moving comeback story. She and all gun violence victims deserve better from Congress.”

As we see, the Brady Campaign goes straight for the emotional heartstrings. It brings up the image of a recovering Gabby Giffords – who by the way supports gun rights – to denigrate this bill. They call it an affront to “victims of gun violence”. They call forth the image of the deranged Jared Loughner as the image of the concealed carry permit holders nationwide. The same person who, if both school officials and Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dubnik had done their duty properly, would not have been eligible to purchase a firearm.

They then move into parsing their language.

Under H.R. 822, people with violent arrest records and gun owners with no training could be granted a concealed gun permit in one state and carry in almost any other state. Local law enforcement officials would be powerless to stop it.

National and state law enforcement organizations, such as the International Association of Chiefs of Police and Major Cities Chiefs Association, strongly oppose the measure because more loaded, hidden guns in more communities will undermine public safety. So do 34 national faith-based organizations that make up the Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence coalition.

An arrest for any crime is not the same as a conviction for a crime. However, the Brady Campaign tries to make it seem that an arrest is the same as a conviction.

They then speak of law enforcement groups such as the IACP and the Major Cities Chiefs Association opposing this bill without ever saying these groups have well-known anti-gun agendas. It gets even worse when they bring up Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence without saying that they themselves helped found this organization!

Finally, they resort to outright lies and distortions about HR 822.

The Brady Campaign and other gun violence prevention groups have warned that H.R. 822 is an even more dangerous bill than when it was originally proposed, thanks to an amendment sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) that passed the House Judiciary Committee in October. The amendment overrides a state’s authority to enforce its basic limitations on gun possession on concealed carriers from other states even if they are ineligible to possess a handgun in the state where the carrying occurs.

For example, under Tennessee law, Tennessee residents with concealed weapons permits may be prosecuted for violating the state’s law forbidding handgun possession by people “while under the influence of alcohol.”

Under the version of H.R. 822 that has now passed the House, this same prohibition would be unenforceable against someone with a concealed carry permit from another state who is caught with a gun in Tennessee while intoxicated. The prospect of a concealed weapon permit holder being arrested while armed and intoxicated is hardly fanciful, since the state legislator who championed Tennessee’s law allowing guns in bars was arrested recently for possessing a handgun while under the influence.

“We’re now calling on the Senate to consider the serious implications of supporting such a law.” Henigan said. “The American people are counting on you to keep their families and communities safe from gun violence.” The Brady Campaign has identified three key reasons that the “Packing Heat on Your Street Act” would undermine the safety of American women, children, men, and our communities.

The legislation would override state laws, forcing states that have tight restrictions on who can get concealed weapon permits, such as New York and California, to allow gun-toting people from states, such as Florida, which repeatedly have given dangerous people licenses to carry.

The legislation forces states to allow untrained, out-of-state visitors to carry loaded, hidden guns, even though studies repeatedly have shown that laws making it easy to carry concealed guns do not reduce crime, and, if anything, increase violent crime.

The legislation forces states to allow out-of-state permits, even though state concealed weapon licensing systems operate under different rules, apply widely varying standards, ultimately endangering law enforcement officers and the general public.

Section 2 of HR 822 explicitly says the possession or carrying of a concealed weapon – with the exception of the eligibility to carry or possess – is subject to the same limitations that a resident of that state would be under.

`(b) The possession or carrying of a concealed handgun in a State under this section shall be subject to the same conditions and limitations, except as to eligibility to possess or carry, imposed by or under Federal or State law or the law of a political subdivision of a State, that apply to the possession or carrying of a concealed handgun by residents of the State or political subdivision who are licensed by the State or political subdivision to do so, or not prohibited by the State from doing so.

Thus, a resident of North Carolina visiting New Jersey would be subject to the same rules and regulations as a resident of New Jersey. The only difference is that the North Carolinian wouldn’t have had to been kidnapped like New Jersey resident Jeffrey Muller in order to have been granted a permit to carry.

There have been no reputable studies done that show any increase in violent crime as a result of shall-issue concealed carry. Any study done by gun control advocates such as the Violence Policy Center doesn’t count as a reputable study. Indeed, if anything, there is a negative correlation between murder and other violent crimes and the level of gun ownership nationwide. Linoge has done two very rigorous studies on this.

The Brady Campaign needs to just give it up. They can’t even lie convincingly anymore. Moreover, as Bitter pointed out on Twitter yesterday, none of the Representatives voting no on HR 822 said it was because of the Brady Campaign. They have become sad pandas indeed.

NRA-ILA On Passage Of HR 822 By The House

The NRA-ILA released this statement on the passage of HR 822 yesterday. As Chris Cox notes, this moves us one step closer to improving self-defense laws in the U.S.

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed an important self-defense measure that would enable millions of Right-to-Carry permit holders across the country to carry concealed firearms while traveling outside their home states. H.R. 822, the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act, passed by a majority bipartisan vote of 272 to 154. All amendments aimed to weaken or damage the integrity of this bill were defeated.

“NRA has made the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act a priority because it enhances the fundamental right to self-defense guaranteed to all law-abiding people,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action. “People are not immune from crime when they cross state lines. That is why it is vital for them to be able to defend themselves and their loved ones should the need arise.”

H.R. 822, introduced in the U.S. House by Representatives Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) and Heath Shuler (D-N.C.), allows any person with a valid state-issued concealed firearm permit to carry a concealed firearm in any state that issues concealed firearm permits, or that does not prohibit the carrying of concealed firearms for lawful purposes.

This bill does not affect existing state laws. State laws governing where concealed firearms may be carried would apply within each state’s borders. H.R. 822 does not create a federal licensing system or impose federal standards on state permits; rather, it requires the states to recognize each others’ carry permits, just as they recognize drivers’ licenses and carry permits held by armored car guards.

As of today, 49 states have laws in place that permit their citizens to carry a concealed firearm in some form. Only Illinois and the District of Columbia deny its residents the right to carry concealed firearms outside their homes or businesses for self-defense.

“We are grateful for the support of Speaker Boehner, Majority Leader Cantor, Majority Whip McCarthy, Judiciary Chairman Smith and primary sponsors Congressmen Stearns and Shuler for their steadfast support of H.R. 822. Thanks to the persistence of millions of American gun owners and NRA members, Congress has moved one step closer to improving crucial self-defense laws in this country,” concluded Cox.

I might note here that Heath Schuler is my Congressman. I haven’t always agreed with him but he has always been very good on Second Amendment issues.

Citizen Committee On Passage Of HR 822 By The House

The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms released a statement late yesterday applauding the House for passing HR 822 – the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011. As Alan Gottlieb notes, this fight is not about a state’s rights but about an individual’s rights.

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

BELLEVUE, WA – The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms lauded today’s 272-154 majority vote by the House of Representatives on passage of H.R. 822, the National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011.

“We’re delighted at the outcome of this important legislation in the House,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, “especially since the floor debate brought out all of the tired old cliché arguments. Congressional anti-gunners pulled out all the stops, but their rhetoric could not derail this common sense measure.

“As so many of the bill’s proponents wisely pointed out during the debate,” he continued, “citizens do not leave their self-defense rights at a state border. Those who would argue otherwise evidently have no interest in public safety.

“What was remarkable,” Gottlieb observed, “is how many self-defense opponents suddenly discovered the cause of states’ rights as an excuse to oppose this legislation. This measure is not about state’s rights, it’s about individual rights.”

The vote found seven Republicans voting against the measure and 43 Democrats supporting it.

“How the bill fares when it reaches the Senate remains to be seen,” Gottlieb noted, “but this recorded House vote will give the nation’s firearms owners a chance to see how their Congressional representative feels about their rights under the Second Amendment, and about the safety of their families when they travel across state lines.

“House members can give all the lip service they want to the Second Amendment,” he concluded, “but it is votes like this that separate the superficial from the sincere.”

Four NC Democrats – It Is Good Enough For Them But Not For You

Section 22 of North Carolina Session Law 2011-268 – House Bill 650 provides universal reciprocity to any out-of-state concealed carry permit by the State of North Carolina. This was passed by the General Assembly on June 17th and signed by Gov. Bev Perdue on June 23rd. It goes into effect on December 1st.

Just as the Mecklenburg Declaration predated the Declaration of Independence so, too, does HB 650 predate HR 822 – the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011. By approving universal reciprocity, the North Carolina General Assembly has granted the law-abiding citizens of other states who have gone through their state’s concealed carry permit process the right to carry in the Tar Heel State.

So why do four Congressmen from North Carolina want to deny North Carolinians the same rights and privileges that we have granted visitors from other states?

That is essentially what Rep. David Price (D-NC-4), Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-NC-1), Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC-12), and Rep. Brad Miller (D-NC-13) are saying with their votes against HR 822. They think it is OK if someone from New York or Massachusetts or California comes to North Carolina and carries concealed with their state’s permit but we North Carolinians, rude country bumpkins that we are, should not be allowed to carry there because it might upset the anti-gun regimes in those states.

Sean pointed the hypocrisy of the Mayor of Carrboro objecting to HR 822 while North Carolina had granted universal reciprocity a few weeks ago. It is obvious that these four are of the same sort. 

Oh, they will disagree with this characterization but it is what it is – a kowtow to gun prohibitionists like Mayor Bloomberg. Fortunately, three other NC Democrats – Shuler, Kissell, and McIntyre – not only voted for HR 822 but were co-sponsors. So too were all the Republicans in the North Carolina delegation. I plan on sending each one of those nine a nice thank you note.

Blah, Blah, Blah….Waaa!

Mayor Bloomberg and his Illegal Mayors are not happy. They want you to know that. That is why they have released this whining press release bemoaning the fact that the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed HR 822 today.

“Ten months after a disturbed man carried a concealed weapon to shoot Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and 18 others, six fatally, the House voted today to gut state laws on who can carry concealed, loaded guns in public. This was an absolutely embarrassing display of putting special interests and fund raising ahead of public safety.

“A majority of the House ignored the advice of police, prosecutors, domestic violence experts, faith leaders and more than 600 mayors who made clear that this measure will put police and communities at greater risk. Many members also cast aside their usual respect for the authority of states to decide how to protect public safety in their communities.

“With unemployment over nine percent and Congress taking no action to create jobs, it is astonishing that catering to the Washington gun lobby is the top priority for House Republicans. The vast majority of actual gun-owning Americans oppose this bill: 82 percent of them want states, not Washington, to decide who can carry concealed, loaded guns in public.

“We applaud the Democratic leadership, particularly Chairman Conyers, for waging a principled fight against this bill, and offer thanks to Republican members who stood up for police and public safety, including Representatives Peter King, Michael Grimm, Bob Turner, Dan Lungren, Robert Dold and others.

“The debate now moves to the Senate, which had the sense to reject this measure in 2009. We urge them to do so again.”

In their call to states rights, Mayors Michael Bloomberg of New York and Thomas Menino of Boston remind me of a certain Alabama governor who famously said in his inaugural speech “and I say segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever.” You just need to replace the word segregation with gun control and you have essentially the same argument that George Wallace made in 1963. Wallace repudiated his words late in his life saying they were one of his life’s biggest regrets. I doubt Bloomberg and Menino will ever repudiate their anti-gun rights bigotry.

HR 822 Passes The House 272 to 154

This afternoon at approximately 5:50pm, the House of Representatives passed HR 822 – the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011 – on a vote of 272 aye, 154 nay, and 7 not voting.

The ayes were comprised of 229 Republicans and 43 Democrats. Meanwhile the noes were comprised of 147 Democrats and 7 Republicans.

There was only one amendment adopted prior to passage and it was Amendment No. 10 proposed by Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA). This amendment would order the General Accounting Office to study “the ability of state and local law enforcement authorities to verify the validity of out-of-state concealed firearms permits.” It was adopted on a voice vote. All the other amendments were either withdrawn or failed.

The Republicans who voted no were Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), Rep. Robert Dold (R-IL), Rep. Michael Grimm (R-NY), Rep. Peter King (R-NY), Rep. Dan Lungren (R-CA), Rep. Robert Turner (R-NY), and Rep. Robert Woodall (R-GA). Of these Republicans, Dold holds the suburban Chicago seat formerly held by anti-gunners Rahm Emanuel and Mark Kirk. Grimm, King, and Turner all represent districts either in or adjoining New York City so I think you can see the fine hand of Mayor Bloomberg at work there. Finally, I can’t explain Woodall’s vote other than a fit of pique at having his amendment defeated and I have no clue about Amash or Lungren.

The full list of the Ayes and Noes can be found here. If your Representative voted Aye, send them a note thanking them. If not, ask them why the heck not!

Now it is on to the Senate where it may or may not pass.

Rep. Renee Ellmers Speaking In Favor Of HR 822

Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC-2) spoke on the House of Representatives floor this afternoon in support of HR 822. She is both a co-sponsor of the bill and a North Carolina Concealed Handgun Permit holder. In her speech, she held up her CHP while saying she and the thousands of other North Carolinians who hold a CHP are honest, law-abiding individuals seeking to protect themselves and their families.

HR 822 Passes First Hurdle

HR 822, the National Right-To-Carry Reciprocity Act of 2011, passed a hurdle today when the House approved H. Res. 463 by a vote of 271 to 153. House Resolution 463 provides the rule under which the debate will be conducted, any amendments that can be considered, and other procedural issues. All bills have a rule before they are considered for final passage.

Rule provides for consideration of H.R. 822 with 1 hour of general debate. Previous question shall be considered as ordered without intervening motions except motion to recommit with or without instructions. Measure will be considered read. Specified amendments are in order. The resolution waives all points of order against the committee amendment in the nature of a substitute, now printed in the bill. The resolution waives all points of order against the amendments printed in the report.

There were a number of Democrats who voted for H.Res. 463 along with all the Republicans that were present. There were no Republicans who opposed this resolution.

In the Rules Committee, they voted 8-3 along party lines not to allow an “open rule” for HR 822. An open rule would have allowed amendments to be offered from the floor of the House. By not approving an open rule, the Rules Committee made sure that opponents could not keep proposing an endless number of amendments in order to delay the bill. Moreover, it also means that the bill will be clean without the proposed amendment from some Illinois reps which would have allowed concealed carry in both D.C. and Illinois which do not currently have concealed carry.

The 10 amendments that will be considered during debate on HR 822 all come from those opposed to it. Given the number of Representatives who voted for H.Res. 463 and who co-sponsored the bill, they have virtually no chance of passing. A summary is below.


1. Woodall (GA): Would protect the rights of states that already have reciprocal agreements in place for the concealed carry of firearms to continue enforcing those preexisting agreements. (10 minutes)

2. McCarthy, Carolyn (NY): Would specify that the legislation can only go into effect in states that have passed legislation enacting the bill. (10 minutes)

3. Hastings, Alcee (FL): Would exempt states from issuing a carry permit on the basis of state reciprocity which do not require individuals to apply for and complete a carry permit application at their local law enforcement station. (10 minutes)

4. Jackson Lee (TX): Would require a state to create a comprehensive database that would contain all permits and licenses issued by the State for carrying a concealed weapon and would make this comprehensive database available to law enforcement officers from all states 24 hours a day. (10 minutes)

5. Conyers (MI): Would preserve state laws with respect to eligibility for concealed-carry. (10 minutes)

6. Johnson, Hank (GA): Would require the possession or carrying of a concealed handgun in a state to be subject to that state’s law regarding concealed carry in regards to firearm safety training that includes live-fire exercise. (10 minutes)

7. Cohen (TN): Would exempt from the bill any State law requiring a person to be at least 21 years of age to possess or carry a concealed handgun. (10 minutes)

8. Jackson Lee (TX): Would require a person provide at least 24 hours notice to a law enforcement officer of the State of the intention to possess or carry a concealed handgun in the State (10 minutes)

9. Cicilline (RI): Would limit the bill from taking effect in a state until the State Attorney General, head of the State police, and the Secretary of State have jointly certified that the other state’s carry laws are substantially similar to its own licensing or permitting requirements. (10 minutes)

10. Reichert (WA): Would require a GAO study on the ability of state and local law enforcement authorities to verify the validity of out-of-state concealed firearms permits. (10 minutes)

The House reconvenes tomorrow at 10am. However, the schedule for floor votes is not yet posted on the House’s website. Sebastian does report it should be voted on tomorrow.

Correction: As Sebastian points out, Rob Woodall (R-GA) is not anti-gun. Moreover, Dave Reichert (R-WA) is not either. I think his concerns about the bill stem from his service in law enforcement. He was the Sheriff of King County before going to Congress. Both Woodall and Reichert voted for H.Res. 463 which is considered a vote in favor of the eventual passage of HR 822.