During the recent veto session, the Missouri House and Senate voted to override the governor’s veto of Senate Bill 656, making Missouri the 11th state to allow citizens to carry a firearm for self-defense – or what is being called “constitutional carry.” Missouri citizens have had the right to bear arms since our state’s first constitution in 1820.
The law changes a variety of procedures and provisions to existing law. Because of the changes and the varied timing of when certain parts of the law go into effect, my office has been answering calls, emails and letters from constituents with questions about Senate Bill 656. Each time a constituent reaches out to my office, I take their input into consideration. I received 487 calls, emails and letters asking that I vote in support of the veto override and only 27 asking that I vote to sustain the veto.
It is important to remember that Senate Bill 656 improves the ability of law-abiding gun owners to exercise their Second Amendment rights; it does not eliminate or restrict the current Concealed Carry process for obtaining a permit, which has been in place since 2003. Under this bill, Missouri will continue to maintain its Concealed Carry permit system (CCW), which allows permit holders to carry into other Right-to-Carry states.