Last year was a banner year for constitutional carry in the U.S. Four states — Iowa, Montana, Tennessee and Texas — became permitless carry states in 2021. So far 2022 has seen plenty of progress, too. The club has expanded by two so far, with Alabama and Ohio deciding that citizens no longer need government-issued permission slips to bear arms.
Last week, the Indiana legislature put the finishing touches on House Bill 1296 which . . .
Repeals the law that requires a person to obtain a license to carry a handgun in Indiana. Specifies that certain persons who are not otherwise prohibited from carrying or possessing a handgun are not required to obtain or possess a license or permit from the state to carry a handgun in Indiana.
The Housed passed the bill by an overwhelming 68-30 margin. The Senate approved it by a 30-20 vote. Indiana’s law would allow anyone 18 years of age or older to carry without a permit.
As the sponsor of the Indiana bill, Rep. Ben Smaltz, proclaimed . . .
“We know criminals are not waiting for a permit to carry a weapon, so why should law-abiding Hoosiers face roadblocks preventing them from defending themselves or a loved one?”
The bill has now been received by Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb, who can do one of three things. He can sign it, veto it, or let it sit on his desk. If he chooses the latter, the bill will become law on March 22.
Holcomb has been noncommittal about the bill so far (with his state police superintendent very much opposed), but the optics of a Holcomb veto after fellow Republicans Kay Ivey and Mike DeWine signed permitless carry bills into law wouldn’t be good.