Out of the Closet: Taft 100% opposed to true Concealed Carry Reform

Buried in a Mansfield News Journal story covering the outlook on challenges facing state government in 2003 is a small but revealing segment about Concealed Carry Reform.

In it, Governor Taft is quoted as saying that he will join the Ohio State Patrol in opposing any bill that allows permit holders to carry their weapon in their vehicle.

This past year was a disappointment for Concealed Carry Reform supporters, but there is a silver lining, for which we owe Senators Finan, Jacobson, and Governor Taft an odd sort of thanks.

Thanks to their efforts to destroy HB274, we now know that in order to necessary to pass true reform, the General Assembly can forget about winning the Governor's support altogether, pass a strong law with a veto-proof majority, and then override the inevitable veto.

There is no reason even to consult with the Governor's office on new versions of the bill - Gov. Taft has made it clear he is not willing to support a concealed carry reform bill that contains even the smallest amount of reform.

Click here to read the entire Mansfield News Journal story. An archived version of the story, edited down to just the portion of the article which pertains to the Concealed Carry Reform issue, follows.

By Jim Siegel
News Journal Statehouse Bureau

Now more than ever, it appears if lawmakers want to approve a concealed handgun bill, they'll have to do it over a veto from Taft.

The Senate added numerous restrictions and fingerprinting requirements -- some at Taft's request -- to the bill before it passed in mid-December. But while House members, including Speaker Larry Householder, said those restrictions went too far, Taft said they didn't go far enough.

The House did not return to vote on the gun bill, so it died.

Taft gave lawmakers credit for improving training and background checks.

"There was one important issue that did not get fully addressed in my judgment and that was the safety of a trooper who stops a vehicle and there's a loaded weapon in the vehicle," he said. "The patrol is very concerned that the loaded weapon not be accessible to the driver or another occupant of the vehicle."

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