After a contentious debate that lasted several hours in the General Assembly, lawmakers votedWednesday to override the Governor’s veto of SB 656, a bill that loosens gun laws in Missouri. The vote, mainly along party lines, was 24-6 in the Senate and 112-41 in the House.
Under the bill, individuals will no longer be required to get permits to conceal and carry a firearm in the state. Eliminating permits eliminates the need to complete a gun safety training course or background check. The bill also allows for a lifetime concealed carry permit and added provisions for “stand your ground,” giving individuals the legal right to defend themselves if they feel threatened.
In his veto message, Governor Nixon said he felt that SB 656 would make the state less safe by taking power away from local law enforcement that currently issue the permits. Supporters claimed that SB 656 gave law-abiding Missourians the right to conceal and carry in places that allowed open carry without a permit.