This article in the Arizona Republic quotes heavily from NRA Board member Todd Rathner, who speaks about a number of proposed bills to liberalize Arizona’s weapons laws. They are reportedly even seeking legalizing concealed carry bill without a requirement to first obtain a permit or license, which has some D.C. based people in hysterics:
Two bills, one to allow concealed weapons without a permit and the other to exempt guns made and kept in the state from federal regulation, each has more than a dozen legislators backing them. If passed, Arizona would be only the third state in the nation to allow either of the looser restrictions.
Everitt called the proposal to no longer require a concealed-carry permit “crazy.”
“You would have dangerous individuals and criminals carrying weapons in public,” he said.
And presumably Everitt thinks they already aren’t? I don’t know enough about Arizona politics to know whether this has any chance of passing, but if it did, Arizona is a state with a major city. Alaska and Vermont are interesting, in that they don’t require a license to carry firearms concealed or unconcealed, but it’s easy for opponents to dismiss this with “It’ll never work for our state. We’re too urban, too populated. Alaska and Vermont are very rural states that don’t have the same problems we do.”
All it really takes is one state with big cities and sprawling suburbs to pass this, and when the sky doesn’t fall, we can probably start passing it in other states. In the late 80s it was Florida that started the shall-issue licensing trend, and it started a tidal wave that spread across the country. In most states, the votes just aren’t going to be there to pass something like this, but they weren’t with concealed carry either, until suddenly we got the votes in Florida, and the rest is history. I have my doubts that the Arizona Legislature has the votes to pass this, but it they did, it might be the push needed to start the dominoes falling.