Campus conceal and carry bill faces uncertain future in Senate
MDN Menu
MDN.ORG Mo. Digital News Missouri Digital News MDN.ORG: Mo. Digital News MDN.ORG: Missouri Digital News

Campus conceal and carry bill faces uncertain future in Senate

Date: April 28, 2009
By: Emily Coleman
State Capitol Bureau
Links: HB 668, Goddard Editorial

JEFFERSON CITY - A House bill that would allow people to carry concealed guns on Missouri campuses is unlikely to pass as is, according to some senators.

The amendment, which passed the House by a 105 to 50 vote, was attached to a bill that would lower the age from 23 to 21 for obtaining a conceal and carry permit.

The bill faces opposition from at least five senators who intend to filibuster it if it makes it to the Senate floor with the campus provision, said Senate Judiciary Chair Matt Bartle, R-Jackson County, whose committee will hear testimony on the bill.

Bartle said the bill has stirred a lot of controversy and it will be very difficult to get it through the legislature.

While Bartle is unsure whether the controversial portion of the bill will even make it to full Senate debate, Sen. Bill Stouffer, R-Napton, said he thinks it's probably something that will get removed beforehand in committee.

"I'm not sure I support that part of it," Stouffer said. "I think that's something that we need to look at here in the Senate. I'm not sure the Senate will pass that portion. ... I think it may get stripped out before it hits the Senate floor."

Bartle does think the worries of the senators are misplaced.

"I feel like some of these tragedies might have been avoided had we had conceal-carry on university campuses," Bartle said.

For one Virginia Tech survivor, however, the answer is not in allowing licensed guns on campuses.

Virginia Tech graduate Colin Goddard, 23, is scheduled to appear at a press conference Wednesday concerning the bill. He has appeared at other events and has written editorials criticizing the move to bring licensed guns onto campus.

Goddard was shot four times during the April 16, 2007, shooting.

University of Missouri System President Gary Forsee has also come out against the measure, saying the bill would make Missouri campuses more vulnerable. Proponents for the measure say it would make campuses safer.

Missouri Digital News is produced by Missouri Digital News, Inc. -- a non profit organization of current and former journalists.