AP: House speaker backs public records of concealed carry permits

The Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — House Speaker Larry Householder said Tuesday he agrees with Gov. Bob Taft's demand that the state disclose the names of people issued permits to carry concealed weapons.

Householder reversed his position from last week when a spokesman dismissed the idea, saying it was contrary to the point of carrying a concealed weapon.

Taft has threatened to veto legislation that would allow people to carry hidden guns unless it requires weapons permits to be open to the public.

Taft said people have the right to know whether their friends, enemies or neighbors have a license to carry a concealed weapon.

"The governor believes it's a reasonable request," Taft spokesman Orest Holubec said Tuesday.

Householder, a Glenford Republican, said concealed carry laws in other states work well because criminals don't know who is carrying a weapon.

"I don't see where a simple public record of who the permit holders are will necessarily damage that at all," he said.

However, he wants retired police officers to be exempt from the requirement.

Legislators are trying to resolve differences between House- and Senate-passed versions of the bill. Both versions call for exempting permit information from public scrutiny.

The Legislature has been unable to pass a concealed weapons bills for the past eight years.

A message was left with Senate President Doug White seeking comment.

Ohioans For Concealed Carry continues to believe that the desired information can be obtained without the publishing of private information. We will continue to monitor developments and maintain communications with the committee members and legislative leadership.

This is a life and death issue. The ever-growing number of defenseless people who are being made victims in Ohio speaks to the need to stop the endless debate and send a bill to Governor Taft for his signature.

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