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You’ve seen the map. That nasty red rights impingement zone smack dab in the middle of the country that looks like it’s about to cleave the U.S. in two. [Note: This map hasn’t been updated to show Wyoming and Arizona as “Unrestricted” carry.] The Wisconsin legislature has entered two bills that would legalize concealed carry in the land of cheese curds and badgers. Unlike last week’s failed bid in Illinois, the chances of a veto in Wisconsin are somewhere between slim and none…

Pro-gun legislators seem to be hedging their bets with the two bills. One would require gun owners to apply for a five-year renewable license. The second would enact “constitutional carry” along the lines of laws in Arizona, Vermont and Wyoming. In other words, a legal gun owner with a legally purchased firearm is free to carry the weapon concealed without any further paperwork or fee, subject to the usual legal restrictions.

Most Wisconsin police organizations have been supportive or, at least, neutral on concealed carry in general. The constitutional carry bill, though, is giving some of them the willies. Jim Palmer, head of the Wisconsin Professional Police Association (is there a Wisconsin Amateur Police Association?) calls constitutional carry “absurd” and says most of his members oppose it.

Milwaukee County sheriff David Clarke Jr. says he’s all for concealed carry—but isn’t so sure about constitutional carry. Milwaukee PD Chief Ed Flynn doesn’t like constitutional carry at all. “The bills as currently drafted put the lives of my officers at risk,” Flynn said. “They have to presume that when they approach someone on the street they’re lawfully carrying.”

It doesn’t sound like training is a big emphasis on the Milwaukee force. It’s hard to find a cop that doesn’t already assume everyone they talk to is carrying, legally or otherwise.

As optimists in Illinois can tell you, don’t count your chickens. There’s nothing much uglier than the legislative process. A training requirement may have to be added to the licensing bill it get it passed. And look for the cops to come out loudly against constitutional carry.

But Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is no Pat Quinn. He’s already shown extreme fortitude in the face of determined opposition. But don’t tell the folks in Illinois. They’re too busy enjoying the quiet, violence-free paradise they’ve created for themselves. Or not.

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  1. “is there a Wisconsin Amateur Police Association?”

    Why would they call CC absurd?? Hyperbole much?
    ‘Oh yes… we will allow you to speak your mind in public as long as the paperwork is in order… but Constitutional free speech? That’s absurd!’

    • ‘Oh yes… we will allow you to speak your mind in public as long as the paperwork is in order… but Constitutional free speech? That’s absurd!’

      That one’s getting written down.

  2. So anyone can carry openly in Wisconsin without a permit. But throw a jacket on and now that person turns into a killer? Will a permit keep violent felons from carrying concealed? The LEOs are the absurd ones.

  3. I hope WI doesn’t screw this up. They already have constitutional open carry except in a car, (and those bills would remove that restriction), so arguing that you need “special” training or need to pay x $ a year just because you untuck your shirt is a bit illogical.

    I don’t think Governor Scott Walker is a big gun guy, but he has said he will sign any concealed-carry legislation put in front of him.

  4. Two Illinois anti-gun articles so far today. As if I did not hate living here enough.

  5. Pat Quinn supposedly has a reputation as a “watchdog” for the consumer. Not when it comes to concealed carry, he doesn’t.

  6. A few corrections on the map
    PA and AL are may issue. They both act and issue as if shall issue but they both have a character clause that is completely subjective should any sheriff decide to enact it.
    IA is shall issue now.

  7. I notice DC is not flagged on this map. While it is not a state, it should be noted it does have citizen residents and their rights are denied, both regarding the bearing of arms as well as the keeping (owning) of arms. Color it red.

  8. Arizona!!!!! We have been able to open carry since we first became a state and the cops learned to deal with it. For years now we have had concealed carry and the cops learned to deal with it. Now we have constitutional carry and the cops are learning to accept it. The Wisconsin police will have to learn and accept the will of the people of Wisconsin. ” all political power is inherent in the people, and goverments derive their just power from the consent of the governed, and are established to protect and maintain individual rights” Az Constitution. Keep Pushing Don’t Give Up the Fight!

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