House Lawmakers Fail To Override Gun Bill Vetos
Two vetoes by Governor Dennis Daugaard aimed at bills that relax state gun laws… stand.
The South Dakota House of Representatives failed to reach a two thirds majority to override the governor’s veto on allowing concealed pistols in the capitol building, as well as stripping the permit process for concealed carry elsewhere.
House lawmakers came up eleven votes shy of allowing gun owners what’s often called “Constitutional Carry” – the assumption that a citizen has a right to carry a concealed weapon without a permit.
State Representative Tim Rounds says he’s seen versions of this bill in past sessions.
“Over the years I’ve always called the Constitutional Carry the convicted felon carry bill because there’s no mechanism in there for law enforcement to decipher ‘Are they legal to carry or not?’ until they actually break the law,” Rounds says.
Rounds says he wants to see more protections for law enforcement.
Governor Dennis Daugaard says the police are better served by current concealed carry laws.
The governor also vetoed a measure allowing concealed pistols inside the capital building.
Bill proponents including State Majority Leader Lee Qualm say the bill is not just for lawmakers, but constitutional officers who are in the capitol year round.
“Currently, when we’re in session, we have good security. There’s somebody here looking after us. But when we were gone—we were here 38 days, there’s 230-some days where these people have very little security,” Qualm says.
The bill requires people who want to carry concealed guns in the statehouse to obtain an enhanced permit. That wasn’t enough to gain support to override the governor’s veto, so the legislation is dead.