Terry McAuliffe Backtracks on Reciprocity

The Washington Post is reporting that a deal has been struck between Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe and Republicans. The deal breaks down to this: reciprocity with the 25 states will not be rescinded. In exchange, the GOP controlled legislature will agree to pass a bill with the following provisions:

  • If someone’s Virginia permit is revoked, they can’t use another state’s permit to continue to carry in Virginia. OK, fair enough. I’m not going to sweat that.
  • State Police will be made available at gun shows to run background checks. The checks will be voluntary, not mandatory, so fine by me.
  • Anyone subject to a permanent protective order (PPO) is barred from carrying for two years the order remains in effect. By federal law someone with a PPO can’t have a gun anyway, so I don’t see what the issue is here.

It makes me wonder if holding reciprocity hostage in an effort to get concessions was the plan all along, but McAuliffe didn’t get much of anything here in return, so I suspect they were made to feel their move on reciprocity was… ill considered. I don’t think the plan was to hold reciprocity hostage to get concessions, I think they realized they made a major political miscalculation and McAuliffe was looking for a face saving way out.

If you’re a Virginia gun owner, and were part of the noisemaking operation down there, pat yourself on the back, your governor and attorney general just blinked. They always underestimate us.

49 Responses to “Terry McAuliffe Backtracks on Reciprocity”

  1. Joe_in_Pitt says:

    Great news. Now when I visit my property in VA I’m not forced to open carry or not carry at all. I don’t have a Utah CCW and there was no way I was going to pay $100 for a VA nonresident CHP.

  2. Stacy says:

    It’s not quite dropping McAwful from a helicopter, but I’ll take it!

    • Sally Hicks says:

      Can we get a helicopter somewhere!?
      You’re right! these are certainly not big concessions. Guess McAwful had egg on his face and needed to scrub it off..still, we must be vigilent ! No TRUST for

  3. JK Brown says:

    But never forget and keep their attempt in mind when they come up for election again.

  4. Michael says:

    What stops them from doing the same in the future and demanding something else? The provisions are small this time, but at the end of the day, we’re exactly back where we started but they got three over on us.

    • Sebastian says:

      Nothing, but given what little he got, I doubt that was his plan. I think he was looking for a face-saving way out of situation that was becoming problematic for him, and the GOP was probably not confident they’d have the votes for an override on the universal reciprocity bill.

      Of course, once McAuliffe is out, I’d pass that sucker anyway as a warning to the anti-gun folks that all you accomplish by taking us on is making your situation worse.

      • Dave says:

        The number of times that pro-2A forces had politically outmaneuvered anti-2A forces is few. The reverse has been many. I’ve likened it to our side playing checkers while the antis play chess.

        Why was a compromise even needed -or wanted (NRA) in the first place? Universal recognition has been seeing favorable numbers from a support in the assembly perspective. So what’s the benefit of this, as opposed to “all permits recognized”?

        None. Zero. Zip. Nada. Nothing. We just had universal permit recognition yanked out from under our feet by not so well meaning so called do-gooders.

        My superficial observation is that PPO is far, far too easy to get for a firearms ban and nothing should be done to support this mechanism for disarmament. The details of the “legislation” are sketchy.

        Secondly, the non-resident permit issue. This also concerns me, possibly more than the PPO issue. I see the word ‘revoked’ used in the media preferred narrative and if that’s true, and that could prove to be ok with sufficient safeguards to ensure some judge with legislative delusions decides expired = revoked, not renewed = revoked, criminal indictment = revoked ( traffic violations are criminal offenses in VA, some more worthy than others but a situation liked this happened in SC years back).

        I’m not crazy about stationing the McAulliffe SP henchmen at gun shows either. This stinks of a camel’s nose under the tent to enable required checks for all sales.

        • Sebastian says:

          I suspect a lot of Dem lawmakers were unhappy with McAuliffe and Herring over this move, and it became too much trouble for him. I don’t think either side wanted to run the risk of trying for a veto override.

          And the PPO issue is moot if it’s been correctly described (I haven’t seen the bill). If you have a DVRO, you’re federally prohibited already.

  5. Dave Briggman says:

    The Post article specifically mentions Domestic Violence Protective Orders….does federal law perhaps distinguish between a DVPO and a non-DVPO?

    I have a reporter here in Harrisonburg who has twice been DENIED a protective order against me because I’ve written that he’s a crappy reporter on his newspaper’s site and because I’ve mocked him on his newspaper’s site. Had he been granted a PO, it would not have been domestic violence-based.

  6. SPQR says:

    They got bupkis over on us.

  7. Dave Briggman says:

    This appears to limit such restrictions to DVPOs:

  8. HappyWarrior6 says:

    Doesn’t matter if they actually did anything to us or not. Remember: Their narrative still works for their true believers… That he took on the evil NRA and forced their hand on SOMETHING.

    Never forget. Also, it’s a pity the votes were not taken on this in the legislature. I believe there was going to be a vote held yesterday. Was this move by McAuliffe done before the anti-gunners could be put on record? What are they afraid of?

    • Greg H. says:

      What they are afraid of is Election Day 2016, and having their names on record as being anti-gun. Now is NOT the time to bask in the glow of small victories or to make the mistake of cutting democrats any slack, but to press them even harder and keep holding their feet to the fire. We have to make gun control such a poison pill for democrats that none of them will want any part of it, ever again. In the immortal words of General Nathan Bedford Forrest, “Keep up the skeer (scare)!”

    • Jake says:

      AFAIK, everything is still in the committee process. The big reciprocity bill (senate version) that would undo McAuliffe’s reciprocity actions and then some goes to the floor next week. But from what I can tell, his anti-gun agenda is getting slaughtered in the committees. He’s probably hoping to appease enough people in the Assembly that the other bills he objects to won’t get a veto-proof majority (like Constitutional carry or universal reciprocity).

      Hopefully, the General Assembly will reject this “compromise” and just pass the pro-gun bills with enough votes to override his veto.

      The big thing is, if he gets this deal and the GA backs off the universal reciprocity bill, there’s nothing to keep him from turning right around and doing it again. Bloomberg’s stooges are scared. Like Greg H says, now is not the time to back down, but to press even harder.

  9. Alan Rose says:

    What the heck is this BS? Further legislating from the throne. And which lawmakers made this so called deal? How is this legal? And why not also force the removal of EO50 that bans guns in executive office buildings?

    • Sebastian says:

      There’s no legislating from the throne. The reciprocity agreements are left alone in exchange for the legislature passing some meaningless platitudes. My guess is that McAuliffe wasn’t willing to put his EO on the table.

      This is a good outcome. The anti-gun people aren’t happy about it.

      • Jake says:

        “The reciprocity agreements are left alone in exchange for the legislature passing some meaningless platitudes.”

        Which is odd, if you really think about it. If those states don’t meet the statutory requirements, as the AG claimed, then by law Virginia cannot recognize their permits. Which makes me wonder if the AG can take it to court after all the deals are set and get the reciprocity yanked again.

        The Republicans need to ignore this and just pass the universal reciprocity bill, and take it out of the governor’s hands completely.

        • Sebastian says:

          The Republicans do not have a veto proof majority.

          • Jake says:

            There are a lot of VA Democrats who are mad enough about it that they were on board with the bill and a veto override. I suspect that this “compromise” is meant to target those Democrats.

    • Dave Briggman says:

      Gripe to the Republicans…they gave him the authority in the local preemption statute to administratively regulate firearms in state agencies in 2012…and I don’t recall hearing about the amendment.

      Read the highlighted language the GOP added in 2012:

  10. James Epley says:

    Now can we work on the unconstitutional Lautenberg Amendment? I have a lifetime sentence for a misdemeanor conviction. If it had been a felony, I could rightfully pursue having my 2nd Amendment rights restored. But since it was only a misdemeanor, there is no legal mechanism for ever having my rights restored, thus it is a lifetime sentence.

    • Dave Briggman says:

      I’m going to check on this under Virginia law and see if I can get someone to carry legislation to fix it.

    • Joe_in_Pitt says:

      Speaking of misdemeanors and VA, that state also has some draconian penalties for traffic violations. You can be convicted of one for going over 80MPH anywhere in the state, even if the speed limit on the road is 70MPH (which most of I-81 and half of I-66 are).

  11. rayber5901 says:

    Part of McAuliffe’s push made sense to me. The states that do not require background checks to obtain a concealed weapons permit should not have reciprocity rights in Va. At home….What the hell is this that we don’t require finger prints on a BG check. That’s crap. Every new EMT or Firefighter is required to have a finger print background check. I’m glad he changed his position and Va’s position but Background checks have to be had by all gun owners. It is NOT a form of identifying gun owners as the NRA talking head makes it out to be. In a rescue squad of 40+ volunteers with background checks I’m the only one that I know of with a conceal license. Mine was almost forced upon me because of death threats from a drug user/dealer. I’ll support Obama’s background checks and Identifying the mentally ill and those with considerable episodes of hatred towards anyone. It’s easy. Put it on the back of our drivers license. FELON or No GUN ….something. If you can’t pass a background check you can’t have a gun in your position. PERIOD. There will always be killings by the bad guy. He /she will find a weapon of some sort if not a gun. The press has made schools the place to make the mentally ill famous for shootings. Some schools and school have seen the writing on the wall and the school staff can be armed. Our Elementary school principle was a decorated combat veteran but can have a weapon in school. WHY the F not. If he wanted to be armed Let him protect his kids if needed. HE knows how. I risk going to jail when I respond as a volunteer Paramedic to the school. I do not have time or a place to secure my weapon… so do I let the asthmatic kid that needs me die or risk going to jail. (real case X2)

    • Dave Briggman says:

      It’s pretty simple why fingerprints aren’t needed to run background checks…in the case of Virginia, no applicant for a concealed handgun permit has ever lied about their identity on a concealed handgun permit application, only to have them correctly identified by their fingerprints.

      And if you’re flagrantly violating Virginia law with respect to carrying a handgun onto school grounds, perhaps you’re the one who should be locked up.

    • Sebastian says:

      All states that issue permits run background checks. The previous poster is correct that fingerprints are not necessary to conduct a decent background check.

      • NotClauswitz says:

        In California the background check for gun purchases and CCW includes a fingerprint. I got a CA CCW and I wish VA would recognize it. :-)

    • Matthew Carberry says:

      Lockbox that cables to the frame of your car seat and will resist a smash and grab car break in costs about 25 bucks. So the “no place to secure” line is laziness, not fact.

      • Jake says:

        @Matthew Carberry: It is not legal under VA law to leave your gun in a vehicle while parked on school property, even if it is secured as you suggest. If you are on school property at all while carrying, you must remain in your vehicle.

        • Matthew Carberry says:

          Then my apology for the laziness crack. I shouldn’t have said it not knowing the law in VA.

          Looks like yet another needed “common sense” reform to VA’s carry laws. I guess I assumed that most states that are “carry friendly” allow for secured weapons in school parking lots for practical parental reasons.

        • Dave Briggman says:

          That isn’t accurate. It is perfectly legal to have a handgun stored in a closed container on school grounds in Virginia.

          • Jake says:

            Only if it’s also unloaded.

            The provisions of this section shall not apply to […] (vi) a person who possesses an unloaded firearm that is in a closed container, or a knife having a metal blade, in or upon a motor vehicle, or an unloaded shotgun or rifle in a firearms rack in or upon a motor vehicle
            [Emphasis mine]

            Va. Code Sec. 18.2-308.1(C)(vi)

            • Matthew Carberry says:

              That’s like most states. Park, pop the mag and eject the round and lock it up. Or do it before you head there. Sure it’s annoying but it solves the immediate problem.

              • Alpheus says:

                From the sounds of things, though, it solves the problem…unless you’re a paramedic who habitually carries, responding to a medical emergency at a school….

  12. dwb says:

    Now we need to work on PA.

    One aspect of the deal highlights a deep flaw in the background check system: Private sellers cannot access NICS. If legislation was really about “background checks” then private sellers could access it (I can look up anyone who has a criminal record in MD for free on the internet). Instead, VA is funding state troopers – expensive and frankly intimidating. Just make NICS open to private sellers.

    • Sebastian says:

      This was proposed already, and anti-gun Senator Chuck Schemer (D-NY) laughed the proposal out of the room. This has never been about background checks.

  13. Bill Jones says:

    Would it surprise you to know that the statute that caused all this is one that was offered and supported by the Republican’s in the Va. House and Senate. The Attorney General only carried out the mandate contained in that statute. Take a look at 18.2-308.014 of the Virginia Criminal Code.

  14. Joe_in_Pitt says:

    The whole move was never about alignment between state requirements. I know this because in the last 7 years, I have gone through the process to obtain both resident VA and PA permits.

    In VA, I visited my county courthouse, filled out a form, and handed in a copy of my DD-214 (which exempted me from any form of training requirement). No picture, no fingerprints, no references. In a couple of months I received my VA CHP in the mail, a piece of paper I had to go to Staples myself to get laminated. A resident VA CHP is valid until it is revoked or expired, regardless of residency.

    In PA, I visited my county courthouse, filled out a form, and had my picture taken. No fingerprints, but had to provide 2 references as well as my reason for carrying. From what I understand I was run through both the NCIC and PICS databases. I may have walked out less than an hour later but I had a higher quality permit with my picture and identifying information on it.

    Based on those two experiences, does the VA AG have a valid reason for feeling that PA’s requirements are substantially lacking? Give me a break. Statistics prove that regardless of requirements between states, folks who CC are the most law-abiding segment of society. Any talk about fingerprints, references, etc. are nothing more than a distraction, a solution in search of a problem. Even in states with Constitutional Carry, I’m not hearing of an abnormally large number of folks who are otherwise legally carrying that are getting arrested. If that were the case, it would be getting shouted from the rooftops by the antis and the media.

    • Jake says:

      Just as one example of the kind of things I think they were using as reasons: VA prohibits people from getting a CHP if they’ve been convicted of a DUI within 3 years. If PA does not have a similar restriction, or the restriction is less than 3 years, or if a judge can override that restriction, then PA would not qualify for reciprocity under the current statute.

  15. tracy matthews says:

    the 2nd amendment is the only piece of paper that anyone needs to carry open or concealed & long as they are legal non felony citizens. who has the right to tell another that his life isn’t important enough for him to protect what God gave him? who should decide whether I or u or anyone else can protect our family or not from harm? what’s wrong with this nation is that there are to many people who think they know what’s best for every other when they need to worry more about themselves & their home rather than trying to dictate laws to control others. Maybe we need to focus more on teaching & practicing good moral foundations rather than just keep passing laws that only law abiding citizens are going to follow anyways. when I was growing up I got spankings at home. there was still corporal punishment in public schools & our neighbors even whipped us & sent us home to our parents to receive yet another spanking. & with all these spankings not one time did we have any mass shootings in any school in this state, & I cant remember hearing of any in any other states either growing up! maybe its the passive way we go about disciplining our youth these days sending the wrong message that they’re no real repercussions for their actions? this is a commonwealth & we need to start running it like it is intended to be ran (like a business)& not a non profit charity organization! we need to exercise our STATES RIGHTS as VIRGINIANS& quit being federal puppets!

    • Sebastian says:

      You won’t get any argument from me. There is a constitutional carry bill in the legislature that would make the permits optional, allowing carry without a license. But until we can get that passed, we have a permitting system.

    • Alpheus says:

      I would even go so far as to say even non-violent felons ought to have their right to keep and bear arms recognized as well. We’ve been watering down the definition of “felony” for many years now. I really don’t think it makes sense to ban a felony embezzler from carrying weapons.

      On the other hand, I don’t necessarily think that we should be letting murderers and rapists out of prison at all, particularly if you are afraid that they’ll attack again. Forbidding them guns indicate that there’s this fear; since there are so many ways a dangerous person can be dangerous (up to and including getting a gun illegally) the standard should be “You should only let them out of prison if you could trust them with a gun.”

  16. Sam P says:

    I think the Republicans don’t have a veto override majority in the House of Delegates (they have 66 members of 100, so I think they need one more vote to get to 2/3). In the Virginia Senate, its a 21-19 majority. As others have mentioned, I suspect a number of Democrats in the legislature didn’t want to get a serious anti-gun vote on their record.

  17. Jake says:

    New update from VDCL. This deal does NOT mean reciprocity with the 25 states will not be rescinded. The deal is (by my reading) that McAuliffe will not veto the universal reciprocity bill!

    That means that VA will honor permits from every state that issues them. Additionally, it takes the State Police and the Attorney General out of the reciprocity equation. But, if another state requires a formal agreement to honor Virginia CHPs, the new law requires the Attorney General to enter into any such agreement.

    This is much better than earlier reports made it out to be. The two “concessions” from our side are effectively nothing – the option for private sellers to run background checks at gun shows, and a law that matches already existing federal law.

    McAuliffe blinked.

    • Joe_in_Pitt says:

      Yup, it’s looking like universal reciprocity.

      If anyone is still wondering who won this round, just a glance at the antis’ social media accounts and press releases…they are absolutely tearing McAuliffe a new one. They lost so bad they can’t even spin it.

  18. OldTexan says:

    This is what I wrote on the GUN NUTS site a couple of days ago – – – I shot some full auto, ammo paid for by Uncle Sam, in the 60’s and of course that can be fun.

    I read this the other day and wondered if I should add my two cents worth of opinion which might not even be worth that. I am an old guy (over 70) who shoots a nice over/under at birds and blued bolt action guns with wood stocks at critters. My two pistols are a 1911 and a High Power. I own one AR type and seem to enjoy old WWI military bolt actions and I support every right to own any gun a person can afford to own with any size magazine they want to hang on it.

    My son and sons-in-law love to shoot all sorts of black guns in lots of configurations and while I don’t much care what the gun is I enjoy shooting the newest stuff and promptly forget if it is a H&K or which kind of new improvement has been installed on which AR. We share a passion for firearms but mine is more historical, I used to drive the old Brit sports cars and like to read about them and I don’t much care about the new wonderful performance cars at all. My Ford F-150 does a good job of getting me where I need to go.

    So, like some of your readers have pointed out, we are different in our preferences of firearms but that does not put us in a conflict situation and you might want to view us as part of a coalition always moving in the same direction working to protect all of our gun rights. Petzal has been one of my favorite writers and his honesty and humor in pointing out things like use enough gun but don’t over do it I find enjoyable. Please don’t throw him away because he does not share your same gun interests.

    I also put a fountain pen in my pocket every day filled with ink out of a bottle and don’t expect half of you youngsters to read cursive. Most all of the music I like was written before 1970 and I can’t think of a decent song written in the last 20 years, that being said I don’t care what music you listen to and hope you enjoy it as long as you leave me alone and get off my lawn.

    • Alpheus says:

      I think you meant this comment for “”

      (Being old, you must have done that because you’re going senile…being a youngish person, I only comment on the wrong thread due to blinding youthful exuberance…well, actually, only about half of the time, since I’m not as young as I used to be…the other half of time at this point is probably due to senility as well… ;-)


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