Saturday, May 30, 2009

Tenn. governor vetoes bill that would allow concealed guns in bars; override predicted

UPDATE, June 4: The legislature overrode the veto. For a report from Tom Humphrey of the Knoxville News-Sentinel, click here.

Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen has vetoed a bill that would allow concealed deadly weapons to be carried into businesses that serve alcohol, prompting gun-rights groups to say he broke a promise he made when running for re-election in 2006. Bredesen said at the time that he would support legislation for holders of concealed-carry permits "as long as they contained provisions to adequately protect the safety of the public."

Supporters of the bill predicted that it would still become law because it passed the House 66-23 and the Senate 24-7, and the veto can be overridden with simple majority votes in the House and Senate. Republicans have majorities in both houses; Bredesen is a Democrat who cannot seek re-election next year.

"The Tennessee Firearms Association is seeking to publicly identify each law enforcement officer and prosecutor who attended" Bredesen's veto event, Eric Schelzig of The Associated Press reports. A Bredesen spokeswoman said the group was inappropriately trying "to intimidate and retaliate against law enforcement officers." (Read more)

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