“The right to self defense is unquestionable and the right to carry a firearm is recognized in our Constitution,” said Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL). “Today, 48 states have laws permitting concealed carry of a firearm in some circumstances, and this legislation would allow any person with a valid state-issued concealed firearm carry permit or license to carry a concealed handgun in any other state.”Link
Stearns, joined by Rep. Health Shuler (D-NC), offered H.R. 822, the National Right-To-Carry Reciprocity Act. Noted Stearns, “It is important to note this bill would not create a federal licensing system. It would merely require states to recognize each other’s carry permits, just as they recognize drivers` licenses and carry permits held by armored car guards.”
Forty states, accounting for two-thirds of the U.S. population, have right-to-carry laws. Thirty-six have “shall issue” permit laws (including Alaska, which also allows carrying without a permit), three have fairly administered “discretionary issue” permit laws, and Vermont allows carrying without a permit. (Eight states have restrictive discretionary issue laws.) Most right-to-carry states have adopted their laws in the last decade.
Added Stearns, “Citizens with carry permits are more law-abiding than the general public. In my home state of Florida, only 0.01% of nearly 1.2 million permits issued have been revoked because of firearm crimes by permit holders. States with right-to-carry laws have lower violent crime rates. According to FBI figures, on average the rate is 22% lower for total violent crime, 30% lower for murder, 46% lower for robbery, and 12% lower for aggravated assault, compared to the rest of the country.”