CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE — Here we go again, New Hampshire. Vermont to the left of us, Maine to the right, here I am stuck in the middle with you. A Senate bill launched earlier this year in a wild bid to bring constitutional carry to New Hampshire was brutally shot down by Her Majesty Gov. Maggie Hassan ruling over the granite throne. The Union Leader reports that the New Hampshire House apparently thinks it’s got a better shot at the throne with their own version of the tragically vetoed Senate bill. House Bill 582 went through with a 206-146 lead — but not nearly enough to overrule Gov. Hassan. We covered the very short glory of the NH Senate in their endeavors in this article.
Representatives from both sides of the aisle hailed or denounced the measures based upon the sort of entrenched, grid-locked politics that defies conventional wisdom.
When referencing Vermont and Maine, both constitutional carry states, Rep. John Burt had this to say:
“Everyone is fine and doing very well in those two states when it comes to constitutional carry.”
And, of course, out comes the absolutely blind rhetoric from the other side of the imaginary aisle. Rep. Wayne Burton (D-Durham) denounced the proposed measure because he seems to think constitutional carry is just a matter of convenience.
“Everyone knows what is going on in this country with people with mental illness picking up weapons and killing people,” Burton said. “Common sense tells me the law is working. . . A few inconvenienced people are not more important than 12 dead kids.”
The Union Leader didn’t mention which dead kids he was referring to but, in common parlance, any mention of dead children must be met with immediate grief and shock and no more debate or discussion should continue.
So, here we are New Hampshire. Again. Hopefully not for the last time?
There’s just a lot of very stubborn people here and not a lot of talking when it comes to constitutional carry. As it stands, we don’t require any specific training criteria to own or possess a handgun and we only require a slip of paper (“Pistol/Revolver License”) in order to carry a pistol concealed on our person.
This doesn’t make sense. But it doesn’t need to make sense… It’s New Hampshire!
In all honesty, as a resident of this state, there is nothing that frustrates me more than to see a natural progression stopped in its tracks. Vermont has constitutional carry, Maine has constitutional carry, and we — inbetween those two states — should have constitutional carry. We all share the same trails, slopes, rivers, lakes, and streams.
What weirds me out even more is I feel like this could be an ominous “turning of the tide”. Earlier in 2015 (and really, throughout most of 2015), states were passing law after law expanding rights for concealed carriers and gunowners. I feel like this, for New Hampshire, is the bulwark whereby after this, we start going down the long, dark, winding path of Massachusetts and — dare I say it — Connecticut. Senator Ayotte recently supported President Barack Obama’s recommendation of using the terrorist watchlist as a veritable “no buy” list for firearms and we’ve gone into great detail why that’s not a good idea, either.
All our big political powerhouses in this state are basically held under a few thumbs and those thumbs are decidedly not in favor of furthering the cause of personal liberties — an idea which is central to the very motto of New Hampshire.
And this isn’t just me bashing Sen. Ayotte or Gov. Hassan. Both have served quite respectively in their respective capacities on a number of issues. And there have been more than a few issues where I heartily disagree with both of them. Gun legislation — or the definitive lack of improvement — is certainly one area I am less than pleased with their performances.
Live Free or Die.