Despite speculation that he’d allow constitutional carry to become law without his signature, West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin wasted no time in vetoing Senate Bill 347 when it hit his desk. As wtrf.com reports, in true Manchinesque style, Tomblin wanted everyone in the state to know that’s he’s all for gun rights. Just ask the NRA! “Throughout my career, I have strongly supported the Second Amendment, as demonstrated by my repeated endorsements and high grades from the National Rifle Association.” . . .
However, I must also be responsive to the apprehension of law enforcement officers from across the state, who have concerns about the bill as it relates to the safety of their fellow officers. It also would eliminate the required gun safety training courses for those applying for a concealed carry permit. In light of these concerns and in the interest of public safety for all West Virginians, I have vetoed Senate Bill 347.
The current licensing process would have remained in place had the bill become law. Mountain State residents would have had the option of obtaining a state-issued carry license to take advantage of reciprocity arrangements with other states.
Second amendment supporters in the legislature have vowed to consider the legisislation next year. SB 347 had passed with overwhelming, bi-partisan majorities in both houses. The Senate passed it 32-2, and the House passed it 71-29.
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