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Governor Kaine Vetoes ImportantRight-to-Carry Legislation in Virginia

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Fairfax, VA-In a show of defiance to the will of the people of the Commonwealth of Virginia, Virginia Governor Tim Kaine (D) announced his decision to veto two critically important self-defense measures, Senate Bill 436 and Senate Bill 476. These vetoes come on the heels of the legislature resisting and denying Governor Kaine’s persistent efforts to pass a “gun-show bill.”

SB436, authored by State Senator Jill Vogel (R-27) would allow for non-concealed carry permit holders to safely store a handgun in a locked container or compartment in a vehicle or boat. The Senate passed the measure 31-9, while the House of Delegates approved the bill, 69-29.

SB476, authored by State Senator Emmett Hanger (R-24), would allow restaurants and clubs to decide whether or not concealed carry permit holders may carry concealed firearms in their dining establishments for self-defense, provided that the CCW permit holder does not consume alcohol. Thirty-one states currently allow concealed carry in restaurants. The Virginia Senate voted 24-15 in favor of the bill, while the House vote passed it 62-36.

“The NRA is disappointed by the governor’s decision to ignore the will of a bi-partisan majority of the legislature,” said Chris W. Cox, NRA’s chief lobbyist. “Both bills are reasonable measures. The delegates and senators who voted for this measure trust law-abiding Virginians and believe that these sensible measures enhance public safety within the Commonwealth of Virginia.”

Governor Kaine’s veto demonstrates that he doesn’t trust Virginia’s nearly 150,000 law-abiding concealed carry permit holders. Moreover, in the media release announcing his veto of SB476, Gov. Kaine alluded to “law enforcement” opposition to this measure. However, during committee testimony in both chambers, Virginia State Police representatives did not state any opposition to the bill when asked for their position.

The General Assembly session is scheduled to adjourn this Saturday, March 8. Consideration of legislation vetoed by Governor Kaine will take place during the Reconvened Session on Wednesday, April 16.

-nra-

Established in 1871, the National Rifle Association is America’s oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group. Four million members strong, NRA continues its mission to uphold Second Amendment rights and to advocate enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime. The Association remains the nation's leader in firearm education and training for law-abiding gun owners, law enforcement and the military.

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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.