September 15. 2015 10:23AM

Rand Paul targets 3 state senators on NH gun bill

New Hampshire Union Leader


CONCORD – Republican presidential hopeful Rand Paul is reaching out to New Hampshire conservatives to pressure three Democratic state senators to support overturning a veto of a “constitutional carry” gun bill.

Gov. Maggie Hassan vetoed the bill July 6. It calls for repealing the requirement to obtain a license to carry a concealed pistol or revolver.

Paul, a U.S. senator from Kentucky, writes in an email blast to his followers that state Sens. Andrew Hosmer of Laconia, Donna Soucy of Manchester, and Jeff Woodburn of Dalton are deciding votes when state lawmakers convene Wednesday to address the governor’s vetoes.

Paul asks people to call the three and urge them to support a veto override of Senate Bill 116.

The bill “enables every law-abiding citizen to bear arms as the Constitution intended: without government permission,” according to Paul. “The U.S. Constitution was specifically designed to protect American citizens from the same tyranny that led to the Revolution, and the Second Amendment is central to that protection.”

Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley, R-Wolfeboro, is a prime sponsor of the bill. Sen. David Boutin, R-Hooksett, and Rep. J.R. Hoell, R-Dunbarton, are co-sponsors.

The New Hampshire Senate passed the bill 14-9 in February. The state House of Representatives voted 212-150 to pass it in late April.

Before Hassan vetoed the bill, she said New Hampshire’s existing law makes sense.

“New Hampshire’s current concealed carry permitting law has worked well for nearly a century – ensuring the Second Amendment rights of our citizens while helping to keep the Granite State one of the safest states in the nation,” Hassan said. “Law enforcement, as well as citizens across New Hampshire, have strong public safety concerns about allowing people to carry concealed guns without a license and oppose removing the protections that the licensing process offers to help ensure that potentially dangerous individuals are not allowed to carry hidden weapons.”