Ken Blackwell to Sen. Pres. Bill Harris: Meeting/ Action requested on HB347

In recent weeks, Buckeye Firearms Association leaders Ken Hanson and Larry Moore participated in two separate conversations with Republican running mates Ken Blackwell and Tom Raga, respectively. (A profile of Tom Raga, which was produced by Moore after a two-hour meeting with Raga, will be published on this website on Thursday, August 17.)

Among other matters, a key purpose for the discussions was to convey the sense of urgency that Ohio gun owners have been expressing about months of delay in the Senate over HB347. We are pleased to announce that the
Blackwell-Raga campaign were extremely receptive to the concerns addressed.

Click on 'Read More' for the complete story, and to view the letter.

Buckeye Firearms Association has obtained a copy of a letter from Ken Blackwell dated August 7, addressed to Senate President Bill Harris,
requesting a meeting to discuss the inexplicable delay in moving HB347, and encouraging "prompt action". (Click on the thumbnail image to read the letter. A .pdf of the letter can be dowloaded here.)

The text of the letter follows:

    Blackwell-Raga for Governor href="http://www.buckeyefirearms.org/publicfiles/billharris347-3.jpg" target="_blank"> src="http://www.buckeyefirearms.org/publicfiles/billharris347-thumb.jpg" height=129
    width=100 border=0 align="right">
    172 East State Street, #203
    Columbus, Ohio 43215
    614-221-8552
    www.kenblackwell.com

    August 7,2006

    Senator Bill Harris, President
    Ohio Senate
    Statehouse, 3d Floor
    Columbus, Ohio 43215

    Dear President Harris:

    I am writing you to urge prompt action on legislation currently before the Senate, in the interest of providing Ohioans with a full complement
    of legal personal protection.

    House Bill 347 is a common sense clean up to Ohio's Conceal Carry law. This bill was co-sponsored by a bipartisan group of 61 House members, including my running mate Rep. Tom Raga.

    I would like to discuss with you the delay in this bill and make the case for its passage. Thank you for your assistance in this matter.

    Respectfully,

    J. Kenneth Blackwell

Back in June, Blackwell's opponent, Ted Strickland issued a statement calling on the Senate to "stop the delay and pass this legislation as soon as possible." Strickland stated that "Ohio’s GOP leadership has demonstrated that they are unwilling to act on important legislation to strengthen protections for Ohio’s gun owners."

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Blackwell was the first major-party candidate to publicly introduce a call for some type of firearms law reform into his campaign. We welcome his voice and leadership on HB347, which is currently stalled in the GOP-controlled state senate.

Senate President Bill Harris told the Hannah Report on Tuesday that "there is still a possibility that the Senate will come back and meet before the November election", but that despite having received hundreds of letters requesting immediate action on HB347, "he does not forsee [sic] anything that would cause him to reconvene
the body."

Hopefully Blackwell's request will convince Harris to start listening to the new leader of his party, instead of the old one (Bob Taft).

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