Bill could allow concealed firearms without a license in Alabama
MONTGOMERY, Alabama (WSFA) – Twenty-one states allow constitutional porterage, which means you can carry a concealed weapon in it without a license, and Republican lawmakers are keen to add Alabama to that list.
The Alabama Sheriffs Association’s greatest concern regarding HB44 is that more dangerous people will be able to hide their weapons and no one will know. But the sponsor of the bill, Rep. Andrew Sorrell, says good and bad people do it anyway.
âIf you come in with a concealed weapon, nobody knows. All the criminals still wear to the football game. I think we need law-abiding citizens to protect us, âSorrell said.
Sorrell says people shouldn’t have to pay for their Second Amendment rights, and unlicensed porting would accomplish that. However, his bill will not completely eliminate permits.
âBecause you will still need to have your license if you want to go out of state with your gun,â Sorrell said. “People still won’t be able to carry a gun in a high school football game without a license because it’s federal law.”
Robert Bobby Timmons is the executive director of the Alabama Sheriffs Association, and he says state sheriffs are against this legislation.
âAs far as I know, yes, and I haven’t had a single sheriff, none of the 67 sheriffs told me they wanted to remove the permits,â Timmons said.
Timmons says license fees aren’t the issue and public safety is the sheriffs’ biggest concern. In response, the National Association for Gun Rights has launched a campaign to denounce those it calls anti-gun sheriffs.
âSheriffs are elected officials in Alabama, and they’re actually running for office this time around,â said Brenden Boudreau of the Gun Rights Association. “And so the point is basically to get them to understand that opposing constitutional postponement is bad policy for them.”
Timmons said it wasn’t about being pro-guns.
âI am a member of the NRA Golden Eagle, as high as possible,â he said. âI am a life, I got a big certificate from the NRA. That doesn’t mean I have to agree with them.
With this NRA-backed bill, it’s also a top priority for the House Republican caucus, so Sorell is confident in his ability to pass, but the sheriffs won’t let him go without a fight.
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