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North Carolina Lawmakers Override Democrat Governor’s Veto on Gun Bill

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

North Carolina lawmakers voted to override Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s veto of a bill will no longer require residents get a gun permit at local sheriffs’ offices for a handgun.

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According to the Associated Press, the North Carolina House voted 71-46 to enact the bill. The state Senate reportedly overrode the governor’s veto on Tuesday. The bill took effect immediately, eliminating the state's longstanding permit system that requiring sheriffs to perform "character evaluations" and criminal history checks of pistol applicants. 

Proponents of the legislation, Senate Bill 41, pointed out that the state’s current policy infringed on residents’ Second Amendment rights. And, supporters noted that the screening process through a sheriff for handguns was no longer necessary due to updates to the national background check system. And, the process didn’t deter criminals from obtaining guns.

"After years of Gov. Roy Cooper obstructing our Constitutional rights, today marks a long overdue victory for law-abiding gun owners in our state," state Sens. Danny Earl Britt, Jr. (R), Warren Daniel (R), Jim Perry (R) and Bobby Hanig (R), said in a joint statement to ABC 11. "By successfully overriding Gov. Roy Cooper's veto, we have guaranteed and secured Second Amendment rights for North Carolinians, and set forth a path to overcoming any future impediments from the lame-duck governor."

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Opponents of the bill claimed that it would make it easier for dangerous people to access guns. Cooper, specifically, claimed that the law will "put communities at risk." 

During the initial vote, ABC 11 noted, three House Democrats signed on to support the bill. The veto is the first since 2018.

AP noted that those who purchase pistols from a gun shop or a federally licensed firearm dealer will be subject to a national background check, and concealed weapons permits are still required.

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