Last year, Deal vetoed the controversial “campus carry” legislation, which would have allowed guns on college campuses. Speaker David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) is planning on the bill making a comeback during the 2017 Georgia Legislative Session. In an interview last month, Deal said if it comes back, he hasn’t completely decided against the measure, “I’m not going to prejudge anything because I want to see what legislation they present,” he said. “We’ll just have to wait and see.”
Ralston, however, has committed to, if anything, a more extreme bill. “There may be some other protections that we can talk about that we can even have a stronger bill than we had last year.” Since Deal cited his fear that “campus carry” could be extended to other educational institutions as his reason for vetoing it, we’d like to think that Deal would be wary of an even broader bill.
However, according to the AJC, “Many lawmakers see [“campus carry”] legislation as part of a grand bargain in the works. Deal’s support for the gun rights bill could be traded for, say, backing for his failing schools initiative.” The Republicans pushing through both “campus carry” and school takeover legislation during this year’s session would be disastrous for Georgians.
One of the craziest things about the “campus carry” bill is the vast majority of Georgians oppose it. When asked a few years ago by the AJC, if they favored or opposed allowing students to carry guns on college campuses and in college dorms, Georgia voters’ responses were overwhelmingly against campus carry. Only 20 percent of those polls supported it. Seventy-one percent of Republicans opposed it. So why are some lawmakers continuing to push this extreme legislation against the will of their own constituents?
One thing is for sure, Georgians who are opposed to “campus carry” need to be extremely vocal during this session. Contact your lawmakers and make sure they won’t vote for this heinous bill when it comes up.