Pro-gun lawmaker skips major gun control vote for fundraiser

Alexis Levinson Political Reporter
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The Tennessee lawmaker who proposed a ban on the enforcement of any new gun control legislation was absent for a vote on an important gun control bill last week, opting instead to attend a fundraiser for his possible congressional bid.

In January, shortly after President Barack Obama signed a series of 23 executive actions as part of a push to increase limits on guns in the wake of the elementary school shooting in Newtown, Tennessee state Rep. Joe Carr put forward legislation that would make it a misdemeanor crime to enforce any new federal gun control laws in Tennessee. (RELATED OPINION: Pro-gun conservatives ignore Constitution in misguided attempts to protect it)

But according to the Nashville City Paper, the Tennessee Republican was not present when the state legislature voted last week on a major gun related measure, which would permit persons with handgun carry permits to leave their gun in the locked trunk of their car while the car is parked in a parking lot.

Carr said opted to leave the chamber because he was confident the bill had sufficient votes to pass.

“I made a calculated decision based on the votes that were necessary for passage. I don’t think it was an unreasonable choice that I made. Not unreasonable at all,” he told the City Paper.

The bill did ultimately pass.

Instead of the vote, Carr was attending an event at Old Natchez Country Club that he said was “organized by some people who are asking me to take part in a 4th Congressional race.”

Carr is one of several Republicans who is exploring a primary bid against scandal-plagued Rep. Scott DesJarlais. State Sen. Jim Tracy and state Rep. Kevin Brooks are also looking at runs.

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