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Gov. Daugaard Gives Conservative Reasons for Vetoing Concealed Weapons Bill

Last updated on 2017.03.07

If I'm going to spin a tenuous hypothesis that Governor Dennis Daugaard is using his veto of HB 1228 to take a swipe at us green Lefties, then I am obliged to recognize his veto of HB 1248 as a swipe at gun Righties. The latest expression of Rep. Betty Olson's rather narrow legislative agenda (basically, if it doesn't have to to do with guns, critters, or GF&P, Rep. Olson doesn't have much to say) would allow anyone with a South Dakota drivers license to carry a concealed handgun without a permit.

In his veto statement, Governor Daugaard says he's all about gun rights, but he also wants the Legislature to balancing protecting rights with protecting lives. He doesn't mention Rep. Nick Moser's claim of epidemic gun-running in South Dakota. He does offer two good conservative justifications for vetoing HB 1248.

The Governor calls HB 1248 "a solution searching for a problem." He says the current system properly balances rights with public safety. No one has shown a serious problem with the current concealed-weapons permitting system, which allows law-abiding citizens to get a permit from their local sheriff in minutes. No mugger has gotten the drop on some poor oppressed citizen deprived of a pistol by those few minutes at the sheriff's office. No local sheriffs have gone on a permit-denying bender and left their populaces trembling in gunless terror. Until we see a problem, we don't need to enact a solution. (Dang: now where was that thinking on HB 1234's education reforms?)

The Governor notes that HB 1248 might actually cause gun-toting citizens to spend more time detained by law enforcement, not less:

This bill will also result in longer and more frequent detention of those who legally carry a concealed weapon. Absent a permit requirement, law enforcement would not be able to ascertain whether an individual is "otherwise eligible to be issued a permit to carry a concealed pistol." If this bill becomes law, innocent citizens could be detained by law enforcement and subjected to time-consuming criminal and mental health background checks [Governor Dennis Daugaard, veto message on HB 1248, 2012.03.16].

HB 1248 might also cause unpleasant run-ins for less legally attentive South Dakotans on their trips out of state:

Even if this bill becomes law, those who wish to conceal a weapon in another state would, in almost all cases, still be required to have a concealed carry permit. Repealing that requirement in South Dakota could lead to our citizens being arrested in other states because of an honest misunderstanding as to whether they are lawfully entitled to carry a concealed weapon in that state [Daugaard, 2012.03.16].

There is no problem, and the proposed action could create more problems: what more conservative reasons does the Governor need to say no to a bad bill?


  1. larry kurtz 2012.03.19

    @rcjMontgomery: HB1248 passed 50-18 last time. Total inversion. Victory for @SDGovDaugaard and law enforcement, who opposed the bill.

    HB1248 *FAILS*, gets only 27 yes votes. 40 no votes.

    House voting now on HB1248, to let people carry concealed handguns without a permit.

    Rep. Abdallah: "Don’t believe that garbage about losing your 2nd Amendment rights."

    @RepStaceNelson: "Vote to give South Dakotans back their rights, at least in this small fashion this bill provides."

  2. larry kurtz 2012.03.19

    @rcjMontgomery: SB 157 will be going back to the House. Veto overridden in the Senate 26-7.


    Matt McGovern announced today he's running for the SD Public Utilities Commission as a Dem; he's the grandson of Sen. George McGovern.

  3. Owen Reitzel 2012.03.19

    "@RepStaceNelson: “Vote to give South Dakotans back their rights, at least in this small fashion this bill provides.”

    What rights were taken away Stace? None. As I said on Facebook this has nothing to do about gun rights. Its about common sense and safety.
    I'm sure we'll have more discussions on this Stace.

  4. Steve Sibson 2012.03.19

    Cory, the first reason does not matter, the Second Amendment stand above it. The second reason was shot down hard during the debate. You can not be detained without reasonable suspecion. Talk to your ACLU friends about that.

    Owen, do you pay a tax for free speech? Do tou pay a poll tax to vote? Do you have to pay a tax to have a Second Amendment right?

  5. John Hess 2012.03.19

    Just read Republicans are pushing for relaxed gun laws across the country.

  6. grudznick 2012.03.19

    Mr. Sibby, if you are against fees for services and want everything for free, I suggest that next year when you are in office (and I am backing you) your first bill be one to change that fee to zero dollars. Eliminate the fee, but keep the process.

    I think I've come up with the solution! Please mention me in your floor speeches.

  7. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.03.19

    "Shot down hard" usually means it beat the argument. But the first reason is bigger. You need to show a problem; i.e., you need to show that a Constitutional right is clearly infringed by the law in question. Who's not getting to bear arms in the status quo?

  8. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.03.19

    Current concealed weapons permit fee: $10, permit good for four years. $2.50 per year, less than one penny a day.

    But I understand, Steve, it's the principle of the thing. I'd be enraged if I was asked to lay down a nickel to get my ballot. But I also can't shoot people with a ballot. The balance of rights and security the Governor is discussing is different on this issue.

  9. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.03.19

    You're right, John. It's almost as if those Republicans were all being coordinated by some vast conspiracy to impose a New World Order... the only difference is, we're not imagining it!

  10. mike 2012.03.19

    I don't like Daugaard's veto.

  11. Steve Sibson 2012.03.20

    "You need to show a problem; i.e., you need to show that a Constitutional right is clearly infringed by the law in question."

    Betty Olson presented that during her opening arguments.

    Cory, are you against showing a drivers license to excercise your right to vote? HB1248 left that requirement in. Some Second Amendment absolutists had a problem with that. And some Second Amendment absolutists bought the argment that they can be detained without cause.

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