Do the legislators in Idaho really think they can discriminate against gun owners and get away with it?
Well, in the 2017 legislative session they did just that!
It was just over one year ago that Governor Otter signed Constitutional Carry into law.
That meant that law abiding gun owners who were not prohibited by law from possessing a firearm could “bear” their arms without permission from the government.
No more fees for exercising a right. No more entering your name into a government database.
As many of you know, Constitutional Carry is sweeping the nation and Idaho was lucky enough to get it passed — after 4 years of pressure from the Idaho Second Amendment Alliance and its supporters.
There was one glaring issue with the bill that was passed last year though.
It only applies to Idaho residents!
Since when does the 2nd Amendment apply only within the borders of Idaho?
Currently 13 states enjoy Constitutional Carry and out of those, only 3 require that you be a resident of their state.
So, in states like Vermont, Kansas, Missouri, Mississippi, and others, you can carry without a permit, even as an Idaho resident. As long as you can carry legally, you don’t need a permit.
Isn’t that how the 2nd Amendment was supposed to work? You “bear” arms anywhere in the United States and without permission from the government.
Yet, in states like Wyoming, North Dakota, AND Idaho, we discriminate against gun owners. We tell them that their rights don’t matter unless they have permission from the government to exercise them.
We treat non-residents like 2nd class citizens!
Since the passage of Constitutional Carry in Idaho, we promised that we would fight against this discrimination.
So, in the summer of 2016 we approached a newly elected Republican Representative from District 35. Her name was Karey Hanks.
Rep. Hanks told gun owners and the Idaho Second Amendment Alliance that she wanted to fix this injustice.
So, what happened to the bill?
The bill was given to Chairman Tom Loertscher the 2nd week of the legislative session. Keep in mind that sessions are about 3 months long.
After the bill was submitted, Rep. Hanks went to Chairman Loertscher nearly every day to ask him when she could get a hearing on her bill.
He told her that she first needed to go to Rep. Judy Boyle, and then the Fraternal Order of Police, and then the Idaho Sheriff’s Association, and then…and then…and then.
Rep. Hanks was sent down the proverbial rabbit hole with no end in sight.
Chairman Loertscher even managed to try his typical “language issues” excuse.
The only issue with that is that Rep. Hank’s bill literally struck 4 words from existing code. It was impossible to contain “language issues” as Chairman Loertscher claimed.
Chairman Loertscher and establishment legislators then tried to claim “reciprocity” concerns. The same concerns they had about Constitutional Carry. Concerns that never panned out to date.
They then tried to claim that they needed to infringe on law abiding gun owners just in case they catch a terrorist – then they can pin another charge on them.
So, we are going to infringe on the 2nd Amendment so that we might be able to add an extra charge on a terrorist someday?
None of these excuses hold any water and in the end Chairman Loertscher stuffed another solid pro-gun bill in his desk drawer.
This is the Chairman who blocked Constitutional Carry in 2015 and also blocked Castle Doctrine expansion this session!
How long will his constituents put up with his tyranny over gun bills?
Instead, the establishment came up with a watered-down version of a gun bill. Sound familiar?
House Bill 93 expanded Constitutional Carry to current members of the Armed Forces. A noble cause no doubt but it actually will cause more confusion as it creates another class of citizens with special privileges.
Keep in mind that CURRENT LAW already allows non-residents to carry shotguns and rifles anywhere in Idaho, concealed, without a permit.
Current law also allows non-residents to carry their handguns concealed without a permit anywhere outside city limits.
Are we to assume that terrorists will carry shotguns and rifles inside city limits but will leave their handguns outside of them? The logic here is unfathomable.
While the Idaho legislature killed another pro-gun bill, we will not give up and we will continue on next session with our battle to end this discrimination.
Some have asked why we want to fight for something that helps non-Idahoans. That is a great question.
First, we must always do the right thing. The 2nd Amendment doesn’t end at our borders and we must fix this issue now before they grow too comfortable with it.
Second, we are setting a bad example for other states. Most states are not doing residency requirements for Constitutional Carry but with Idaho, Wyoming, and now North Dakota doing it, we are setting a bad precedent.
Let’s fix it now before we end up with a tangled web of Constitutional Carry states who all have different versions and we end up doing “reciprocity” agreements with this as well.
That brings us to you and what you can do to help.
>>> First, we need you to sign the petition to remove the Residency Requirement for Constitutional Carry. Then be sure to send that petition to others in your family and friends circles.
>>> Second, please make sure to get on our Facebook page. We are now over 26,000 followers on Facebook but we would like to get that closer to 40,000 by the time next session starts. So please “Like” our page and invite all your friends to do the same.
>>> Third, please help us get gun owners more active across the state through social media, email, and direct mail by donating your most generous contribution today of $200, $100, or $50 today!
If that is too much then please do $25 or even just $10 right now to help us move forward. Any amount is greatly appreciated.
Now that the session is over, we have very little time to ramp up our efforts for next year’s session and next year’s election cycle. The time to act is now!
Chairman of the Board
Idaho Second Amendment Alliance
The first bill was the Castle Doctrine bill and the second bill was the removing the Residency requirement for Constitutional Carry.
We appreciate the efforts of Rep. Karey Hanks and her battle to expand gun rights. She fought to end discrimination against gun owners in Idaho.
Even though the session is over, please help us move forward for next year by signing your petition today.
Then please consider your most generous donation of $200, $100, or $50 today to help us gather more gun owners across the State of Idaho!