Although 2nd amendment rights have been a core Republican belief for decades, the bill they’ve introduced runs counter to another core belief of the party’s, states rights. By creating a federal bill that creates a blanket right-to-carry law, they’re superceding individual states’ rights to regulate and police according to their own legal code. Rep. Trent Franks, a Republican from Arizona where there is no right-to-carry permit needed, attempted to explain it this way, ““It’s kind of like having a driver’s license. There are some states that have stricter driving laws than others.” The exception here, of course, is that although cars can be dangerous, concealing a handgun is a whole different level of danger and, in states like Arizona, Alaska, and New Hampshire, it’s almost totally unregulated.
The bill has the support of a broad cross-section of Republican lawmakers, including some Blue Dog Democrats. However, Rep Dan Lungren (R-CA), a member of the House Judiciary Committee, said that he felt the law was overstepping. “It’s a states rights issue,” Lungren said, eluding to the inherent federalism in passing such a sweeping piece of legislation.
Advocates for the bill say that some smaller states have already agreed to honor one another’s carry laws, and that there needs to be some federal standardizing of right-to-carry for concealed weapons. This despite the fact that other efforts to create some federal standard for the U.S. legal patchwork across state lines, like Obama’s health insurance exchange, have been fought on the grounds of 10th amendment states rights. As we’re long understood, it all depends on who’s submitting the legislation.