VA Republican: If McAuliffe hates firearms so much, we'll cancel his security force

The decision by Virginia’s Attorney General Mark Herring to sever reciprocity in carry permits with 25 other states has one state senator seeing red. Bob Carrico considers the issue “absurd,” but plans to do more than fume about it. If the Terry McAuliffe administration worries this much about firearms, Carrico wants to take action to keep them as far away from the governor as possible, according to the Bristol Herald-Courier:

“I absolutely think it’s absurd,” Carrico, a Republican from Galax, said Tuesday. “I think it’s a threat to the people of Virginia that have concealed carry handgun permit reciprocity from other states. … This is all political and I hope people see that.” …

Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, has been unsuccessful in his gun-control efforts and he has taken some steps through executive action, including the recent ban on concealed guns in most state offices.

Herring’s announcement came three weeks before the start of the General Assembly session, which is controlled by Republicans. In November, a bill was filed that would require Virginia to recognize permits from other states. If approved, it would reverse Herring’s ruling.

Carrico said he’ll address the issue come January.

“A lot of the governor’s power is deferred to the General Assembly at that point and I’ll be getting with my collegues to circumvent everything this governor has done on this point,” he said. “I have a budget amendment that I’m looking at to take away his executive protection unit. If he’s so afraid of guns, then I’m not going to surround him with armed state policemen.”

Our colleague Bob Owens at Bearing Arms calls this “a little payback” for a large helping of hypocrisy — and sees a pattern in the latter:

It’s not lost on anyone that the biggest supporters of gun control are those who have other people with guns employed to protect them.

Billionaire Michael Bloomberg, the man personally bankrolling an otherwise dying gun control movement in the United States, is constantly surrounded by armed bodyguards (mostly poached from the NYPD, as I understand it), and I know for a fact that Moms Demand propagandist Shannon Watts has armed bodyguards, as I’ve seen them up close. Most other gun control supporters have public or private security, and a surprising number of them have concealed carry permits of their own.

As they should. Why not? Responsible adults who abide by the law should not be prevented from rational self-defense options. For all of the sturm und drang of this particular debate, the rate of gun-related crime among carry permit holders is far below that of the general population. In Florida, only 168 such crimes have been committed from 1987-2014 among 2.5 million carry permit holders, for a rate of 0.00672% overall, not annually. In Kansas, only 44 among 51,078 permit holders in five years got charged with a gun-related crime, and only 17 of those lost their permits for convictions. That comes to 0.033%, again overall and not annually. It has been clear for years that carry permits do not present a threat to keeping the peace, and arguably may have made keeping the peace easier.

Perhaps that’s why these activists feel so comfortable hiring people who carry guns when it comes to their own protection. Too bad they don’t want other Americans without recourse to that kind of wealth to have an opportunity to plan for their own self-defense.

Virginia Republicans are planning on other legislative strategies as well. Some of those reciprocity agreements were signed agreements, and Herring’s decision may not stand up in court with those states. There is also a move to pass legislation that commits reciprocity into statute, which would put an end to Herring’s ability to act unilaterally. Those would need supermajorities to withstand McAuliffe vetoes, but Virginians strongly support gun rights and some Democrats may be reluctant to go along with this stunt on behalf of extremists.

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David Strom 9:21 PM on June 01, 2023