WASHINGTON — House Speaker Paul Ryan confirmed his support for Second Amendment reciprocity legislation Friday, but stopped short of any bill that exclusively gave conceal carry rights to congressmen.
Several Republican members proposed a handful of Second Amendment reciprocity bills following the shooting at a Republican congressional baseball practice in Alexandria, Virginia, that resulted in the injury of Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise and others.
“I support reciprocity, but I don’t know if all of our members support reciprocity. There are issues some members have on federalism grounds on that,” Ryan told The Daily Caller at his weekly press conference.
Texas Republican Rep. Brian Babin proposed a bill on June 20 enabling Congressmen to lawfully carry a concealed firearm wherever their duties take them, including D.C.
However, Ryan did not support the special exception for members of Congress related to Babin’s bill saying on Thursday: “My own view, with respect to members of Congress with that question, is that we’ve got to be treated under the same law like everybody else–no special exceptions for members of Congress, as far as I’m concerned.”
Kentucky Republican Rep. Thomas Massie also put forth a bill on June 15 associated with concealed carry reciprocity rights in the District of Columbia. Massie spoke to House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy about his bill Thursday afternoon, which he felt was a positive interaction.
“Three quarters of the states already have reciprocity agreements among the states. So, it’s only natural that DC should follow suit and do the same thing,” Massie told TheDC.
The Kentucky Republican went on to say, “Now, as far as national reciprocity goes there’s a debate about the 10th Amendment and whether the federal government can tell states they have to honor the gun control regime of another state in their state. But there’s no 10th Amendment issue with this D.C. bill that I’ve introduced, because the Constitution is very clear. This body makes the laws for the federal city.”
D.C. officials appear ready to fight Massie’s bill and any others that challenge their local gun control laws.
“Washington, D.C., is the last place you want to condone or allow concealed-carry weapons,” D.C.’s non-voting Democratic Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton told The New York Times. “They are certainly not going to be successful if I have anything to say about it.” (RELATED: D.C. Dem: ‘Insult’ To Say Residents May Want Concealed Carry)
Massie, though disagreed, saying, “This is a slam dunk legislative issue. Also, politically, I think it’s a great move, because three summers ago I offered an amendment here to defund Washington D.C.’s gun control laws and 20 Democrats voted for it. So, I think it’s actually politically a good vote in the House and it’s an excellent vote in the Senate because you have nine Democrats who are up for re-election in red or purple states that Trump won on a pro second amendment platform.”