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Senate defeats concealed carry amendment

CHRIS CASTEEL, Washington Bureau Modified: July 22, 2009 at 12:28 pm •  Published: July 22, 2009
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Senate voted today against allowing people with concealed carry permits in their states to carry guns in all other states that have concealed carry laws.

The proposal got 58 votes, while 39 senators voted against it. However, under an agreement made on the proposal, it needed 60 votes to pass.

Oklahoma honors concealed carry permits from all states that have them. According to the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation's Web site, 31 states have honored Oklahoma's concealed carry laws.

Currently, only Wisconsin, Illinois and the District of Columbia don't have concealed carry laws.

Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., who sponsored the amendment defeated today, said there are more than 5 million permit holders nationwide.

Some senators argued that states should be able to determine who is eligible to carry a gun and what kind of weapons are permitted.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said her state has stringent requirements that would be undermined by allowing people with permits from other states to carry weapons in California. She said 13 states with concealed carry laws don't recognize the permits issued from any other states.

But Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn argued that the right to carry arms "is a fundamental right in this country guaranteed to us as part of our liberty."

Coburn, R-Muskogee, and Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, voted for the amendment. Thune offered it to the bill making defense policy for the next fiscal year.


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