Today, Congressman Steve Rothman (D-NJ) voted to protect New Jersey's people by rejecting the federalization of conceal and carry laws in the United States, by voting against H.R. 822, the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act. This bill passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 272 to 154.
"If the National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act becomes law it will be an imminent and dangerous threat to New Jersey and our nation. Under New Jersey law, concealed carry permits are strictly limited to those who demonstrate a "justifiable need," such as police officers. Under the proposed federal legislation, anyone permitted to carry a concealed or hidden firearm in his or her home state could do so in any other state, regardless of state regulations," said Congressman Rothman. "This federal law would be a serious infringement on state's rights, especially the State of New Jersey, by overriding the laws of our state with the laws of other states with more lenient gun policies. The gun laws of Alaska and Arizona have no place in the State of New Jersey and would endanger the lives of New Jerseyans."
Some states, including Alaska, Arizona, and Vermont, require no special permit to carry a concealed firearm. The National Right-to-Carry Reciprocity Act would force New Jersey to accept out-of-state permits, even when the person is not in compliance with New Jersey's laws. Currently, there would be no way to easily authenticate the permit and determine if it is valid. There is no national database of concealed carry permits, and some states are not even able to verify the authenticity of their own permits.
"This bill is bad for New Jerseyans and all Americans. In addition, in these tough economic times it is more important than ever for Congress to focus on creating good American jobs and getting our economy back on track. This bill doesn't help create jobs. All it does is threaten to compromise the safety of people throughout my district, New Jersey and our nation," said Congressman Rothman. "As a Member of Congress and a former Mayor, I proudly stand with more than 600 U.S. mayors and nearly all of our nation's law enforcement organizations in opposition to this measure."