Veto of Louisiana Constitutional Carry Bill Could See Override Session
Lawmakers in The Sportsman's Paradise are pushing to hold a veto override session this month that could see the state become the nation's 22nd to recognize permitless carry practices.
The state legislature, dominated by Republicans, passed a permitless carry bill, SB 118, last month only to see Louisiana's Gov. Jon Bell Edwards, a Democrat, veto the measure. The proposal was popular on its trip through Baton Rouge, passing the state House 72-28 and carrying the Senate in a 27-9 vote. With numbers like that, an override attempt could be in the cards, not only for the gun rights protection bill but for many of the whopping 27 other – mostly populist – bills scuttled by Edwards this session on a host of issues.
"Our Democrat governor has vetoed common-sense legislation that would provide needed protections for our daughters, our gunowners, and our elections," said state Republican Party Chairman Louis Gurvich this week, after that body's executive committee unanimously endorsed an effort to hold a veto override session.
When it comes to permitless, or constitutional carry, all the states that border Louisiana – Arkansas, Mississippi, and Texas – already have such laws. Meanwhile, Louisiana, one of the poorest states in the country, has one of the highest costs in the nation when it comes to obtaining a permit, mandating a fee of $125 for a 5-year permit, both for originals and renewals. On top of that are the costs of mandatory training, which is also required on both originals and renewals.
The effort to bring permitless carry to Louisiana is strongly supported by both local and national 2A groups while, on the opposite side of the spectrum, Bloomberg-supported anti-gun groups say Edwards got it right.
All the Louisiana legislators have been sent a ballot asking if they want to have a veto session. If successful, the session would occur on July 20. Such sessions are exceedingly rare in the state, famous for so-called Kingfish Politics, and have only been held twice before.