As previously reported in Undercover Porcupine (here and here), Constitutional Carry is back on the table here in Maine. Constitutional Carry is the right to carry firearms concealed without a permit, pursuant to the Constitution.
Article 1, Section 16 of the Maine Constitution states:
Every citizen has a right to keep and bear arms and this right shall never be questioned.
Now sponsor Senator Eric Brakey is reporting that he has locked down the cosponsors and Constitutional Carry is set to become law of the land. The Sun Journal is reporting that it seems to be all but a done deal, with all that remains being the legislative process itself.
Senator Brakey correctly noted in speaking to the Sun Journal that this is a moderate proposal. Firearms laws can be absurd and end up hassling the law-abiding citizen for simply being a law-abiding citizen.
He further told the Sun Journal:
“Under current Maine law, the simple action of putting on a jacket turns a law-abiding gun owner into a law-breaker, unless they undergo a lengthy permitting process.”
Is a criminal going to care about the process? By definition, they don’t care and won’t bother to get a permit before misusing a firearm. These laws thus then put law-abiding citizens at an extreme disadvantage by making their self-defense rights more difficult to use.
This is a concept that most Republicans and Democrats understand, with cosponsors ranging across party lines with even bipartisan support among legislative leadership. Fortunately, the minority fringe of alarmist Democrats who oppose responsible gun ownership failed to intimidate their party leaders, who opted for a reasonable approach to firearm ownership.
Mainers win this battle, with fringe Democrats and special interest groups losing a critical battle against responsible gun owners. Although the legislation is not officially law yet, it appears that Senator Brakey has secured a critical victory for Maine here.
More theater is certainly to follow. Stay tuned as this bill advances through the Legislature in its journey to Governor Paul LePage’s desk.