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Chris Christie courtesy

In a move that’s being seen as an attempt to get his 2016 presidential campaign back on the rails, Chris Christie announced this morning that he will be using his gubernatorial powers to begin dismantling some of the firearms laws in New Jersey. The state has inched closer to the top of the pile of “gun unfriendly” locations since Illinois’ laws have been slowly whittled away by court rulings, but the new rules might change all that. Christie’s main focus seems to be on streamlining the system for obtaining handgun licenses, which those in New Jersey are required to obtain for every handgun they purchase. He has also announced that he will be instructing the law enforcement agencies in the state to begin operating on a “shall issue” basis for all new concealed carry permits . . .

Over the last few months, Christie has been under constant attack from opposition politicians and mainstream media hosts for the “Bridgegate” scandal. Desperate to get the attention off the negative aspects of his reign over the state of New Jersey in time for the primaries and national convention, it looks like he’s trying to re-enforce his Republican credentials and place some distance between himself and the wildly unpopular president. What better way to do that then to dismantle some gun control laws? As Christie reportedly said, “if the president can act without congress then I can act without the legislature.”

The announcement was made during a press conference this morning at the State House in Trenton. According to, the governor’s announcement was ostensibly to bring the state in line with the recent court rulings before any new lawsuits were filed.

“The recent court cases in Washington, D.C. as well as Chicago, Illinois have shown us that the laws we have on the books need to be re-examined, to make sure that we are adequately balancing the need for public safety with people’s right to own and carry guns” the Governor said. “Clearly the current ‘may issue’ system that we’ve implemented in New Jersey is no longer good enough, and we need to make some changes to stay on the right side of the law.

“Therefore, starting today I am instructing all law enforcement agencies to begin operating on a ‘shall issue’ basis. This will ensure that we can still keep guns out of the wrong hands, but make sure that we are in compliance with the law. I will also see to it that the legislature changes the law permanently at the first opportunity.”

Christie went on to detail another change he was making, namely instituting an instant approval process for new handgun licenses. While the requirement to obtain a license is a matter of state law and not something Christie can change on his own, he has started the process to implement a phone line where gun store owners can call and get a new pistol permit issued immediately for any customer that needs one. The process will still involve a more thorough background check than normal, but it should be much quicker than the old method. These pistol permits will also be issued on a “shall issue” basis.

When asked for comment about the possible political backlash, the Governor reportedly said “relax, buddy! It’s just April Fools!”

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    • Hey, I don’t really care what he thinks, as long as he does the right thing. And he’s doing the right thing here. Still not thrilled with the idea of President Christie, but his actions are a plus. [damn I fell for it]

      • No kiddin’. As long as he does right by the citizenry, I personally don’t care about his motives. He’s a politician – I don’t need to like him – all I care about is what he DOES.

        • Never trust anything a politician SEEKING office says or does. They are like adolescent children promising to be good to attain something they want. Once their goal is achieved all promises go out the window. See BHO. BTW, did he sign the mag limit bill?

    • I would rather him not do that, and let the supreme court take it up. This way it’s permanent and any democrat coming in can’t reverse it.

      • There is a case pending cert right now that could ..go…all…the ..way. (Drake v. New Jersey, where the Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the state’s regulations despite the complete absence of any record of any legislative findings to support the assertion of a “compelling governmental interest” in preventing citizens from bearing arms–at all. Also competing for attention in the near future will be Peruta v. San Diego, coming to precisely the opposite conclusion–that a state MUST provide a manner for qualified citizens to carry, whether openly or concealed.)

        P.S. Good work Nick. I fell for it. It seemed so…reasonable… in light of the pending cert app in Drake that the state might try to moot the issue.

        • It was Christie allegedly acting reasonable, silly me for not listening to those alarm bells going off.

  1. … as a NJ resident who was tried of jumping through hoops…. I’ll save you the time

    comment moderated

    • What sucks about this even tho its not true I have a ccw from two states UT FL and I cant get one in my own state NJ police don’t help when the shit hits the fan.

      • I knew it was an April fools jest, but what he wrote makes sense! I moved to NJ from NE about 10 or 11 months ago and I did have a CHP but I had to send it back do to there is no out of state permits issued from NE. Funny in states (North East, like NJ,NY,MA and the like) that don’t allow CC, those are the states an honest citizen really needs it! NJ has to foliow the Constitution or the state is operating aginst the law!

  2. So the Pillsbury dough boy tries to score some points to position himself for a run in ’16. Too bad…. A socialist he remains….and will NOT get my vote. Ever.

    • I’ll admit that I have no reason or desire to follow NJ politics. So I don’t. However, aren’t trimming the budget and busting up the NJ teachers’ unions his claims to fame? Isn’t that… you know… the opposite of socialism? I’m not trying to be snarky… truly interested in why you would label him a socialist.

  3. Wow. I watched his interview with Megyn Kelly last night and told my wife that I can’t imagine voting for him. I will watch to see how this plays out. Maybe I am a single issue voter after all.

  4. Leghorn had to scrap his original April Fools gag when Leland Yee actually was arrested for gun smuggling.

  5. Hey, TTAG staff, that’s two years in a row your April Fool’s article got me.

    Well played, sirs.

  6. Christie is no damn good and can’t be trusted. He’s done much to pave the way for the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood’s infiltration of New Jersey – positioning “tainted” individuals in key positions including Judicial appointments.

  7. Fantasy news stories are all over the blogosphere today. My favorite is the story about Wayne LaPierre stepping down and being replaced by Stephanie Spika (which would actually be a good thing). A close second is the story about Bloomberg defunding the Moms Demanding Attention.

    • I don’t know why anyone would, and yet whenever the media talk about the 2016 election, they always bring his name up. Why? He’s a lifetime politician, as clueless and corrupt as most of them. They should talk about Rand Paul instead, but of course they’ll do everything to ignore him.

      • I was reading last night that the “powers that be” were lobbying Gov. Bush to run, because they do not believe that Paul, who is popular with his base, will appeal nationally. Bush, on the other hand, refuses to commit because he doesn’t want to run against his brother’s legacy–people may have had enough Bush in the White House.

        • I’ve had enough Bush and Clinton to last a lifetime. Its funny how they’ll try anything to avoid having a conservative in the old style take a whack at it… noooo, can’t have that, gotta keep putting people like Romney and War McCain up there.

  8. You guys always do the disappointing style of Aptil fools jokes. Why can’t you do the kind where you say something terrible has happened, and then we are happy and relieved to learn that it’s false?

    But kudos for getting me again this year

  9. Sigh.

    I’m not sure which is sadder. I got fooled again or the commenters who haven’t read the entire post.

    Well played, Leghorn. Well played.

  10. Christie is talking about making the Pistol Purchase Permit “shall Issue.” i.e. Now you can buy a handgun without the ridiculous, subjective process that requires background checks in triplicate and a sign off by your local LE. That is much different than making the Permit to Carry a Handgun “shall issue.” Carry permits will still continue to be no-issue until we can get the crook politicians in the State Assembly and Senate to change it. Keep sending your money, NJ is only just now up to the human rights standards of places like Illinois, Washington, DC, and Hawaii.

  11. All I could think of was dammit, is Drake (NJ shall issue goes to SCT conference in April) mooted, then I got to the end. Well played.

  12. You had me until I checked the link, and found no confirmation.
    What the Hell, maybe DRAKE will be heard by SCOTUS and the joke will be prophetic.

  13. Saw this one coming. Now, last year, with the NFA backlog? He got me good. Chris Crispy Creme doing something pro-gun? That one there is a Bridge(gate) too far for me to take seriously.

  14. I realized as I opened up TTAG this morning (and was assaulted by TWO popups!!!!!! Really guys?) what day it was, and there was the expected article sitting waiting for me. You didn’t get like you did last year with the fusking NFA one, Leghorn! Better luck next time!

  15. This was just wrong! I got my hopes all up and ready to leave work early and head straight to the PD. Now to send the link to my buddy and ruin his day too.

  16. Even if this were true, he still has no chance to beat Hillary. She will ride the wave of sympathy from Bill’s timely passing right into the White House in 2016.

    • Notice how she has been incredibly quiet since the “WHAT DOES IT MATTER?!” tirade. Democratic voters have a political memory that can be measured in nanoseconds.

      • To be honest, in reading the context for the quote you are referring to, I agree with her on that point. Some congressmen were trying to make political hay over the situation, and I agree with her evaluation that bringing the attackers to justice would be more important than understanding the exact motivations for the attack. All else aside, it wasn’t really an outrageous statement.

        • Political hay. She was upset at being taken to task over a massive fvck up by the State Department that cost 4 Americans their lives. And, even if it were the case that she was trying to avoid “political hay,” what exactly did she do to follow up on her “find them and bring them to justice” idea besides slink away into the shadows?

          She ran away from the limelight as fast as humanly possible to avoid any more damage to her political aspirations. And you will find her back in that limelight as we approach 2016 acting as if nothing happened.

          Of course, the White House has pretty much been ignoring Benghazi since then. So I guess she’s in good company.

        • No argument it was a screw up. It’s unacceptable that someone in the chain of command didn’t say, “gee, these guys are saying there’s a problem, we should get them some more security”. Whether or not its a decision that can or should be made directly by the secretary of state, it indicates a failure of leadership that nobody acted on those requests. My comment was only directed at what was specifically said during that hearing. The action, or lack thereof, afterwards is another issue.

  17. “As Christie reportedly said, “if the president can act without congress then I can act without the legislature.””

    Awesome, what a fantastic political legacy.

    • What is funny is that he absolutely could order the state police to start issuing permits and it would be up-and-up.

      Can’t do that, though, blood in the streets, etc.

  18. For us people who are behind the wall and stuck I the Great Peoples Republic of New Jermany, this is a very sad April fools joke!!! =(

    We are dependent on the Supreme Court to finally restore our rights, and that sucks !!!

  19. Got me. The rationale for this pandering was so ridiculous it made sense. I still wouldn’t vote for him even if it was real. If he was sincere and was capable of making such a move to implement “shall issue”, then he should have done it in his first year as governor.

  20. Dah!!! As an NJ resident I fell for this hook, line, and sinker…… Should have known it was too good to be true.

  21. I got really excited there for a second. Then I remembered the ATF thing you guys pulled last year.

  22. I know it’s April Fools day and all that, but don’t play with my emotions.

    <– behind Enemy Lines in NJ

  23. This must be true since I read it on the internet.
    Hey, the MSM never lies about the crap Obama does, either.

  24. Might want to be careful before someone actually believes this and votes for the asshat.

  25. Lemme guess, the next update is going to involve Chuck Schumer and Diane Feinstein falling madly in love (they have so much in common!) resigning their Senate seats and eloping to Liberia?

  26. I was patiently waiting for the first TTAG April Fool’s Day joke. I didn’t even have to read past the headline. “New Jersey” and “Shall Issue” in the same sentence? Come on!

  27. you jerks! i forgot today was april first.

    oh well, best wishes for our friends in the slave state.

    • At least at present there is no need. The Peruta majority did it for him. Let’s hope that the decision sticks.

  28. I just want to know if it’s true? Or April fools? I live in new jersey and can’t find anything else that states this.

  29. I was in the middle of emailing the news to my friends and trying to figure out how I could complete my application for a permit this very afternoon, when it dawned on me….



    (That April Fools joke will be hard to top.)

  30. if what is published were true I say its a good step in the right direction Mr Christie but like everyone else I don’t believe it and it is too much of a disappointing April Fools

  31. This is like telling your girlfriend you cheated on her. Then she tells you she slept with your best friend. You tell her April Fool’s hun and she tells you she’s serious.

  32. Hey Illinois got “shall issue”. Why NOT New Jersey? I do AGREE this April Fool was CRUEL to you NJ folk

  33. Saw the link on Facebook to this article and was like really!!!!!, clicked to open it in a new tap thinking no way this is awesome. Then I realized in the little description on facebook it read April 1, 2014. I went FU and did not even bother opening the tab and immediately closed it. Eventually I got curious on how it was going to be sold (weather it was going to sold as a plausible story or one of those absolutely ridiculous ones) so I came back to read the article.

    • Informally, New York invaded a long time ago with gangs aplenty combined with hordes of left-wing financiers, accountants, traders, and lawyers. The resulting concoction has been explosive to the middle class, which has been squeezed out (I mean the independent middle class, not the middle class dependent on government largesse), and highly destructive to the lives of the poor – men, women, and especially children.

      At this point, life in NJ would be a lot better if NY formally invaded and annexed the NJ counties neighboring NY City. Nothing would change in NY politics, but NJ would instantly return to its former conservatism.

  34. When I first saw this I began having chest pains and a feeling of impending doom. Then I remembered it is APRIL FOOLS DAY HA HA HA HA ! That was a good one NICK you almost had me!

  35. April Fools Jokes should be left to the children!!
    Adults who are talking about serious subjects should NOT engage in such childishness!

  36. Nick Leghorn, wouldn’t your wife love to know about that stripper you have been seeing….

  37. I agree this is WAY TOO LITTLE, WAY TOO LATE. This is a political maneuver and nothing more on his part. His true colors regarding the 2nd Amendment have already been shown and these are not them. As a registered republican, if Christie gets the nomination, I will refuse to show up an vote.

  38. Wow… As a NJ resident, you really pulled on some heart strings with this one.. Very sad, I should have known better. If it sounds too good to be true….

  39. I almost fell for it, Nick.


    Christie is still a tool. A tool for a political system that does not, never has, and never will give a rat’s ass about anyone but its lackeys. Always was. Always will be.

  40. As Christie reportedly said, “if the president can act without congress then I can act without the legislature.”

    A republican saying something like that? Thanks, let’s not. In my 40+ years of political awareness, there have been far too many republicans who will shoot themselves in the foot during important elections.

    I can’t tell you how relieved I am that this was April fools day.

  41. Were it not an artifact of today’s date, I’d caution “that which can be ‘granted’ by the stroke of a pen can be taken away with the stroke of a pen”.

  42. Definitely a step in the right direction. ALL law-abiding citizens should be allowed to exercise their constitutional right to carry a firearm, regardless of where they live.

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