South Dakota constitutional carry bill approved in Senate committee

A bill that would remove the permit requirement to carry a concealed gun has been approved in the South Dakota Senate Judiciary Committee.

House Bill 1072, sponsored by Republican Rep. Lynne DiSanto, passed on a 5-2 vote in committee Wednesday and now heads to the full South Dakota Senate for a vote.

The Argus Leader reports supporters of the bill, including the National Rifle Association, argue lawful gun owners have the right to carry firearms any way they choose, whether it be openly or concealed.

Rep. Lynne DiSanto has said that the background checks will still take place if required at purchase and that the law will not make it easier for criminals to purchase firearms. The bill would also keep in place the current permitting system if gun owners still wanted to obtain a permit.

Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard has vowed to veto the permitless carry bill if it should reach his desk, arguing that under the new bill, “Individuals with a proven history of violence or substance abuse and those who have been identified as a danger to the public or to themselves could not be restricted from carrying a firearm.”

Gov. Daugaard has also promised to veto another pro-gun bill — House Bill 1156 — that was approved in committee Wednesday and would allow law enforcement and enhanced concealed carry permit holders to carry firearms in the South Dakota Capitol building.