It's been a couple weeks since the satisfying federal and state elections. Here in Wisconsin, we now have a republican controlled state senate, assembly, and a republican governor. The last time conceal carry legislation passed both state houses with veto proof majorities here in Wisconsin it was despite democrat control of those legislative bodies. Of course we all know Gov. Doyle vetoed that legislation.
MANY democrats in the state fully support conceal carry, but there are a few for whom many concessions were made to the last bill in front of the legislature to get that legislation to the governor. With republican control of both state houses the realties have DRASTICALLY shifted. Those concessions are NO longer necessary.
Right now one can open-carry in Wisconsin with NO permit and no registration, etc. 1000's of people open carry every day in Wisconsin. Conceal carry however is banned. In other states there are 2 kinds of conceal carry situations. Some states have what's called "shall issue" laws which means if you meet the qualifications set forth, the state MUST issue you a permit. Some of those qualifications include registration in the form of a permit, a permit tax that can vary widely, from a few $ to hundreds of dollars, mandatory training classes that may cost several hundred dollars, and sometimes even fingerprinting and frequent renewals where you must again pay an expensive permit fee and get re-fingerprinted. The other danger in a shall-issue permit system is that even if the original law has only a small permit tax, in future years when perhaps the state legislature is NOT as gun-rights friendly, they could EASILY jack up the permit tax to HUNDREDS of dollars through a simple budget bill and effectively stifle the ability of many people to afford to renew their permit. Its a dangerous slippery slope that leaves your right to carry at risk to future legislators. We know the Wisconsin legislature/governor is VERY pro-carry right now. You can't be sure after future elections it will be.
The trend is for more and more states to simply allow all law-abiding citizens to carry concealed without a permit. This is called "constitution carry". Constitution carry means you DO NOT have to register with the government, pay expensive fees for a permit, and be required to take expensive mandatory government training classes. You simply have a right to carry in the manner of your choosing as the constitution provides. There are 3 states that allow "constitution carry" Vermont, Alaska, and Arizona. Arizona just passed constitution carry last year. Other states including Utah and Texas are likely to become "constitution carry" states in the next year.
The last time conceal carry was in the legislature, the reality was a shall issue law or no concealed carry. That has changed. NOW with a republican senate, assembly, and governor, the two choices facing Wisconsin are a shall-issue permit system OR constitution carry. One of those options is a virtual certainty this next legislative session. It will be up to YOU to decide which it will be.
There are a number of reasons why constitution carry is the preferred scenario.
As I mentioned above, a shall-issue permit system means you have to register with the government, pay a permit tax (fee), possibly take expensive mandatory government training classes costing hundreds of dollars and even in some cases get fingerprinted.
In addition, a permit system would require a great deal of NEW government resources and databases to administer. This cost would amount to MILLIONS of dollars to implement a system and hundreds of new state government employees to staff that bureaucracy at a time when WISCONSIN IS IN A FISCAL CRISIS. As you all know, "smaller government" is the trend right now and a shall-issue permit bureaucracy flies in the face of that.
Constitution carry would require no fee's, no mandatory government training, no fingerprinting, no new bureaucracy, no waiting months for your permit and no future renewal requirements where you have to go through and pay all that again. Wisconsin Statute 941.23 is the conceal carry ban. If that 130+ year old statute was simply repealed, Wisconsin would become a Constitution Carry state. Wisconsin also needs to repeal 167.31 which would allow you to carry in your vehicle (currently you have to unload and encase your weapon when you get in your car)
Wisconsin Carry believes there will never be a better time to get constitution carry in Wisconsin than RIGHT now.:
-At their state convention in Milwaukee this past summer, the Wisconsin Republican Party voted the right to carry concealed WITHOUT a permit into their official platform.
-Wisconsin Governor Elect Scott Walker has gone ON RECORD stating that IF the legislature gets a repeal of 941.23 to his desk, HE WILL SIGN IT.
-We have a republican controlled state senate, assembly, and republican governor.
There is NO reason we can't have Constitution Carry in Wisconsin. We just need to let our legislators know that is what we want.
Wisconsin Carry, Inc. has been contacted by the United States Conceal Carry Association which has a huge national AND in-state footprint. The USCCA
and Wisconsin Carry are in agreement that Constitution Carry is right for Wisconsin and feasible this legislative session.
Wisconsin Carry and the USCCA
will be working together on this issue to present a united front in Wisconsin to obtain Constitution Carry for our law-abiding residents.
WHAT CAN YOU DO.
With YOUR help we can make this happen. 3 things. Contact your state senator and assemblymen, Contact Governor Elect Scott Walker, and Contact OTHER gun-rights groups in Wisconsin and ask them to join Wisconsin Carry AND the USCCA
and present a united front seeking Constitution Carry In Wisconsin.
First, contact your state senator and assembly person and ask that they support Constitution Carry. Politely share with them that since any law abiding citizen in Wisconsin carry currently open-carry with no permit, it makes no sense to have to register with the government and pay expensive permit taxes and submit to mandatory government training just to be able to conceal.
Ask your legislators to support a repeal of 941.23 and 167.31. Share with them that Wisconsin is facing a fiscal crisis, and there is nothing to gain from enacting a new bureaucracy to administer a shall-issue permit system.
You can find your legislators here:
Who Are My Legislators?
Many legislators were just elected 2 weeks ago and they will not take office until Jan 3rd. You should be able to contact those legislators through their campaign websites/facebook pages etc.
Here is a link to all the state election results:
Fall 2010 general election results - JSOnline
Second here is a link to contact options to contact Governor Elect Scott Walker. Governor Walker is already on record stating he will sign a repeal of 941.23. Thank him for agreeing to sign that repeal. Ask him to ask the legislature to get a quick clean bill to his desk that would repeal 941.23 and 167.31, which would cost the state nothing, provide our LONG awaited right to conceal carry and allow the state to move on to the business of fixing Wisconsin's fiscal crisis.
Office of Governor-Elect Scott Walker
17 West Main Street, Suite 301
Madison WI 53702
suggestion form: Citizen Suggestions
THIRD Contact other gun rights groups in Wisconsin and politely ask them to JOIN Wisconsin Carry, Inc. and the United States Conceal Carry Association to present a united front to bring Constitution Carry to Wisconsin. Many of these groups are currently evaluating their position on conceal carry given the election results. Let them know that you support Consitution Carry and you hope they do as well.
Wisconsin Concealed Carry Association:
N3292 County Rd E
REDGRANITE, WI 54970
Wisconsin Concealed Weapons, The Wisconsin Concealed Carry Association
BY PHONE: 920.295.9435
BY EMAIL: info @ wisconsinconcealedcarry.com
Bill Schmitz, Chairman
bill.schmitz @ wisconsinconcealedcarry.com
WI-Force: (state NRA
Wi-FORCE - Wisconsin's NRA State Association
N615 Silver Ln.
Pulaski WI 54162-8320
9356 W. Dixon St.
Milwaukee, Wi. 53214-1268
Kenosha, WI 53141-0808
W271N7055 Hansen Dr
Sussex, WI 53089
National Rifle Association
2603 Julip Drive
Wausau, WI 54401
PO Box 157
Gleason, WI 54435-0157
National Rifle Association
11250 Waples Mill Road
Fairfax, VA 22030
-ILA Grassroots Coordinator:
-ILA Grassroots Division
11250 Waples Mill Road
Fairfax, VA 22030
Phone: (703) 267-1194
Fax: (703) 267-3918