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Missouri Fights For Right-to-Carry

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

On September 11, the Missouri Senate joined the House in voting to override Governor Bob Holden`s (D) veto of HB 349, making the "Show Me State" the nation`s 36th state to pass a fair, non-discretionary Right-to-Carry law.

This victory was short-lived, however, as St. Louis Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer recently issued a permanent injunction striking down the new law on grounds that it violates a section of the Missouri Constitution dating back to 1875. The ruling made permanent Judge Ohmer`s temporary injunction against the law, which had been issued in October.

State Attorney General Jay Nixon (D) immediately appealed the ruling to the Missouri Supreme Court, arguing that Judge Ohmer`s ruling was both "unprecedented" and "absurd."

The NRA is vigorously fighting to overturn the ruling. The Missouri Supreme Court has granted NRA`s motion to file an amicus brief in a challenge to the law. NRA attorney Steve Halbrook said the constitutional provision is not meant as a prohibition against concealed guns. "Ever since Missouri has been a state, the legislature has decided when and where to either allow or prohibit concealed weapons," he said.

The Missouri Supreme Court has set a January 22 date to hear the appeal. Rest assured that NRA-ILA will keep you apprised of future developments or decisions.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.