Gov. Gary Herbert has a vetoed bill that would have allowed Utah residents to carry a hidden, unloaded gun without a permit.
The legislation was one of the most controversial to come out of the Utah Legislature this year.
In recent weeks, Herbert’s office has received thousands of phone calls and letters from supporters and opponents of the bill.
<a href=”http://610kvnu.com/assets/podcaster/328/2013_03_15_328_9240_2867.mp3″ target=”_blank”>After the legislative session ended, State Senator Lyle Hillyard, R-Logan</a>, said he talked to a lot of legislators who said they strongly support gun rights and the 2nd Amendment, but they voted against the bill. Hillyard said that he voted against the bill too.
“I felt comfortable that our current gun laws are working fairly well, at least for concealed weapons. I just think that it’s a good practice,” Hillyard said. “If any of my clients as a lawyer were telling me they were going to get a concealed weapons permit I would say, ‘Great, that’s your Constitutional right. You should be able to pass a background test and be able to qualify.’
“But I’d also say, ‘You’d better learn everything you can about that gun. Because if your gun gets used the wrong way I don’t think juries would be very forgiving of you.'”
Hillyard said the problem is that if police are called to a scene for some reason and you have a gun to protect yourself, police don’t immediately know that is why you have it.
The bill would have allowed gun owners to carry a hidden weapon as long as it was unloaded. A permit would still be required to carry a hidden weapon on a school campus or to carry in another state that honors Utah’s concealed weapon permits.
A gun is considered unloaded in Utah if there’s no round in the chamber.