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South Carolina Legislative Update

Friday, May 20, 2005

On Thursday, May 19, an amendment that completely guts the original intent of H 3110, the Right-to-Carry reciprocity bill, was passed by the South Carolina Senate. The new language makes the existing law even more restrictive by spelling out specific requirements that other states must meet in their permit issuing process before the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) can enter into a reciprocal agreement. In fact, the new language is so much more restrictive than existing law that several states that are currently recognized by South Carolina could be removed from the existing reciprocity list. It appears that SLED has been working overtime to derail the original intent of H 3110, which was to simply remove SLED`s discretionary power for determining reciprocal states. In the nine years since South Carolina adopted its shall-issue Right-to-Carry law, SLED has approved only nine states for reciprocity, several of which were approved only in an apparent response to NRA`s recent push to remove SLED`s discretion. Unfortunately, several Senators who had solid pro-gun records in the past have sided with SLED and anti-gun Senator Robert Ford (D-42) to introduce Thursday`s poison-pill amendment. Those Senators need to hear from the pro-gun community immediately! Please contact Senate President Pro Tempore Glenn McConnell (R-41) at (803) 212-6610, Senator Larry Martin (R-2) at (803) 212-6340, Senator Jim Ritchie (R-13) at (803) 212-6032, and Senator John "Jake" Knotts at (803) 212-6024. Please also contact Governor Mark Sanford at (803) 734-2100 and ask the Governor to ensure SLED removes its objections to NRA-supported language for H 3110. Finally, please call you State Representative and ask him/her to support amending H 3110 when it comes to the House for a concurrence vote, and to support only NRA-approved language that will ensure South Carolina will recognize the Right-to-Carry permits issued by other states, and vice versa.

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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.