Congratulations on your decisive victory in the 98th District, my district. In addition, congratulations on having a new Republican Governor who can now help with some much needed reforms.
I voted both for you and Governor Walker.
I am writing you to urge you to pursue and support legislation that will bring Wisconsin gun laws into agreement with our Constitution and the will of the people.
1. Repeal Wisconsin Statute 941.23, the concealed carry law. This particular law was passed in the 1800's and has been shown to be in violation of Wisconsin's Article 1, Section 25 of the Constitution, which was passed in 1998. There have been several recent rulings to support this. Judge Jon Counsel, the Circuit Judge in Clark County has ruled it unconstitutional. District Attorney Fox has issued a memo declaring it is unenforceable in Jackson County. http://www.wisconsinappeals.net/wp-c...0/Schultz1.pdf
2. Repeal 167.31, vehicle carry of a loaded firearm.
3. Repeal 941.235, firearms in public buildings
4. Repeal 941.237, firearms where alcoholic beverages are sold for consumption
5. Repeal 941.24, prohibition of switch blades.
Items 2-5 have been deemed unconstitutional in the Jackson County DA's memo as outlined above.
The effect of these changes would be to legalize unlicensed
carry of defensive weapons by law-abiding Wisconsin citizens. Of course, as you know, the Wisconsin Republican platform was changed this year to support unlicensed
open and concealed carry.
The tsunami that is the Republican takeover in Wisconsin happened because we the people are tired of being taxed and regulated to death. To implement a licensed concealed carry system would require the expense of additional staff both at the state and county level for administration as well as onerous fees for licensing and mandatory training.
AK, AZ and VT have no licensing and training requirement for both open and concealed carry and there have not been any negative results. UT is also considering doing this in 2011 as well.
Here are some additional points which speak for themselves:
- Governor Walker has already gone on record as willing to sign a simple repeal of 941.23
- 74% of the residents of this state in a STATEWIDE referendum in 1998 voted the right to carry (article 1 sec 25) into our state constitution, so carry of defensive weapons is a VERY popular political position.
- 48 states allow concealed carry
- It is already legal for law-abiding citizens to carry openly in Wisconsin with no permit and no training and 1000's are doing so safely every day. Public safety would not be affected by these people putting on a jacket when it's cold and concealing their weapon.
- 29 other states allow residents to carry without a permit.
- Other states allow all law-abiding citizens to carry in the manner of their choosing without any permit (VT, Alaska, and now AZ)
- The TREND is moving towards more and more states allowing law abiding residents to carry in the manner of their choosing with no permit and no mandatory training.
- A permit system will fly in the face of smaller government by requiring more government employees/resources to administer a permit system, yet the permit system will be ignored by criminals.
- A permit fee would be a tax on our Constitutional right to carry that would be a hardship on low-income residents who deserve the same right to self-defense as anyone else.
- Future anti-rights legislatures could easily raise permit fee's through a simple budget bill to exorbitant levels to effectively stifle the right to carry concealed. History shows us that legislatures change and rights once secured are put on the chopping block. PLEASE protect the law-abiding citizens of Wisconsin as best as you can by NOT leaving a trap-door for future less freedom-minded legislatures to use to deny the right to carry.
- Recent US Supreme Court decisions have found the right to carry to be a FUNDAMENTAL right. Being a fundamental right, law abiding citizens should not have to register with the government to exercise that right.
In closing, I would just point out that this initiative would match up perfectly with your stated goals of,
- Limiting the size and scope of government
- Simplifying regulatory and tax policy
- Putting people first
Thank you very much for your consideration in this matter,