On Friday, Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter signed Senate Bill 1389 into law, making the state the ninth to enact permitless carry laws. In actuality, permitless concealed carry was already already legal for all residents over 18 years old—except within city limits. Senate Bill 1389, which is set to take effect in July, will allow adults 21 years old or older to carry concealed handguns inside a city without permit requirements.
“Senate Bill 1389 is common sense gun legislation,” Greg Pruett, Executive Director of the Idaho Second Amendment Alliance (ISAA), told the Clearwater Tribune. “Permitless Carry has been legal outside city limits for many years in Idaho. SB 1389 simply allows law-abiding gun owners to put on a jacket without breaking the law when they are carrying inside city limits.”
In recent years, several other states have also enacted laws that allowed for “constitutional carry,” the term that advocates use for permitless carry. Other states that recognize permitless carry include Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, Maine, Vermont, West Virginia, Wyoming, and Kansas. Bills are also currently in consideration for several states to enact constitutional carry, including no less than four bills in Michigan. Such efforts are widely supported by gun owners and Second Amendment groups, such as the ISAA, which spearheaded the outreach for the Idaho bill.
However, gun control groups also unanimously oppose constitutional carry. Activists argue that the additional training and regulation that goes with a concealed weapon permit is not only beneficial, it is necessary. Governor Otter pointed to the same argument when he signed the bill into law.
“While S1389 is consistent with the U.S. Constitution, Idaho values and our commitment to upholding our constitutional protections from government overreach, I am concerned about its lack of any provision for education and training of individuals who choose to exercise the right to concealed carry,” MSNBC quoted the Republican governor. “Such a safeguard would seem to be part of the Second Amendment’s ‘well-regulated’ standard. What’s more, the addition of a simple training requirement in this bill could have addressed the concerns of our valued law enforcement leaders and others who cherish both the shooting culture and the safety of shooters and non-shooters alike.”
Otter added that lawmakers should observe the effects of the new law—and if required, act to change it if it “undermines public safety.”
Seeing as how the majority of gun owners in the state already had access to permitless carry for years, many observers do not suspect the new law to bring any issues.