By Kevin Murphy
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (Reuters) - Kansas residents would be allowed to carry concealed weapons without permits under a proposed measure endorsed by a majority of state senators, the bill's author said on Thursday.
Kansas would join Alaska, Vermont, Wyoming and Arizona as states that allow residents to carry concealed weapons statewide without a permit, according to the National Rifle Association, which supports such legislation.
The bill introduced on Wednesday would eliminate background checks, gun training and other requirements that go along with a permit for concealed carry of firearms, Republican state Senator Terry Bruce said.
"It's like any liberty a person has," Bruce said. "If you are going to own a gun you need to be responsible and if you are going to carry a gun, there is certain due diligence required of you regardless whether or not there is a permitting process."
The bill is co-sponsored by 26 of the 40 senators and must undergo debate in committee before it can be considered in the full Senate and House. Republicans control both chambers.
The bill drew criticism from the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.
"Kansas should not become the fifth state to allow dangerous people - including felons, fugitives, domestic abusers and the severely mentally ill - to evade Brady background checks and carry loaded guns in public without a permit," Brady Campaign spokesman Brian Malte said in an email.
(Reporting by Kevin Murphy in Kansas City; Editing by Peter Cooney)