April 5, 2021
This is just embarrassing...
While three Republican-controlled states have passed Constitutional Carry this year (Utah, Montana, and Iowa), Indiana Republicans squandered their supermajorities by failing to pass true Constitutional Carry in 2021!
Senate Judiciary Chairwoman Liz Brown failed to give House Bill 1369 a hearing, which contained a version of Constitutional Carry, effectively killing it before the April 8th deadline to advance the bill out of committee.
Of course, this is in part to blame on the poison pill amendment added to the legislation by the bill’s author, Rep. Ben Smaltz.
In what should have been easy for both the Indiana House and Senate to pass, Constitutional Carry was complicated by Rep. Smaltz, who was more interested in placating anti-gun special interest groups instead of fighting for a clean Constitutional Carry bill.
It is clear that House Bill 1369 was hastily cobbled together in the name of compromise, without realizing the full ramifications of the policies added to the bill and championed by those who refused to read the bill.
The approach that was taken by Rep. Smaltz and his apologists is reminiscent of Nancy Pelosi’s famous quip about Obamacare that “we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”
Not a single Constitutional Carry state, now 19 of them, has the database system championed by Rep. Ben Smaltz that could have led to all sorts of civil liberty violations, as well as delaying the implementation for over a year.
And it wasn’t just all of us at HGR who felt that way. Legal experts and even numerous Republican Senators expressed their concern with the Smaltz database.
At best, it would have been a clumsy system with all sorts of data quality and security issues, where your personal information could be exposed to fraudsters and unaccountable government bureaucrats.
This could have been easy to fix by the Senate Judiciary Committee, but it’s apparent Chairwoman Brown didn’t want to put in the work to fix Rep. Smaltz’s mess.
It shouldn’t be this way in Indiana.
With a Republican supermajority in the Indiana Senate, you’d think the Senate would have fixed and passed Constitutional Carry with no problem.
Instead, pro-gun Hoosiers will have to wait for another year to have their gun rights restored.
Thanks to the pressure you’ve put on the politicians in Indianapolis, Constitutional Carry passed the Indiana House of Representatives for the first time this year.
Not only that, but several Republican members of the Senate recognized the glaring issues with Smaltz’s bill only because of your persistent calls and emails alerting them to the issues with House Bill 1369.
This means the pressure is working and we can’t take our foot off the gas now!
Together, we can show the Senate and the House it is time to advance a clean Constitutional Carry bill without any anti-gun amendments next session.
In fact, we are already working with legislators to get clean Constitutional Carry bills filed in both the House and the Senate for 2022.
But only with the continued activism of pro-gun Hoosiers like you will we make it happen.
I know we can make Constitutional Carry a reality in Indiana and join the 19 other states with Constitutional Carry.