Nathan Deal keeps the door open for campus carry measure

Gov. Nathan Deal, House Speaker David Ralston and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle in 2016. BOB ANDRES / BANDRES@AJC.COM

Gov. Nathan Deal has kept the door open for legislation that would legalize firearms on the state’s college campuses despite his vigorous veto of the legislation last year.

The Republican said this week he is continuing to have conversations with the House supporters on the legislation, House Bill 280, though he did not elaborate on his concerns with the measure.

“We’re receptive to continuing to talk with them, and hopefully they’re receptive to making some additional changes,” he said. “Perhaps. But whether they do or don’t, that’s their decision.”

 


 

Shortly after last year’s measure passed, Deal sent hand-written notes to House Speaker David Ralston and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle urging them to exempt on-campus child care facilities, faculty or administrative office space and disciplinary meetings in a separate measure.

Both declined to make changes, and Deal invoked an opinion by the late Justice Antonin Scalia that described colleges as “sanctuaries of learning where firearms have not been allowed” in his veto message.

This year’s measure, sponsored by state Rep. Mandi Ballinger, would allow those 21 and older with a Georgia weapons permit to carry concealed weapons on to most parts of college campuses. It bans guns from on-campus preschools, but it doesn’t include the other exemptions that Deal once demanded.

It passed by a 108-63 vote, largely along party lines, and now is pending in the Senate.

House Speaker David Ralston said of the governor that lawmakers tried to be “accommodating to him and his concerns.” When asked on Friday why it didn’t address all of Deal’s concerns from last year, Ralston pointed to the process.

“This is the will of the House of Representatives, by a very clear margin, after a bill that has gone through an extensive, very detailed process going back to April of last year,” he said. “What you saw today was a product of a lot of the discussions.”

Reader Comments 0

72 comments
Edwin E. Akins II
Edwin E. Akins II

Rep. Mandi Ballinger, R-Canton, proposed the bill and 'considered' the veto requests from Deal, issued in 2016. She agreed to child care areas being gun free. Good. So this is admission that limiting guns in particular areas is something we can all agree on. But then she states that in all other areas... "We need to allow people to defend themselves" (by allowing guns), she said. If you reference the veto language and the areas that are still in this proposal for campus carry... she is directly referring to maintaining this "need" in faculty or administrative office space, and at disciplinary meetings! Seriously??? This is a special kind of stupid. To give some perspective... hover-boards and smoking are banned from a majority of campuses because of the plausible risks to their owners and to others. http://college.usatoday.com/2016/01/09/more-than-30-colleges-ban-hoverboards-amid-safety-concerns/ A majority of faculty, students, parents, administrators, campus police, campus presidents, and even the chancellor of the USG... DO NOT WANT Campus Carry. I appreciate those who deeply treasure and want to exercise their rights in the US... but take a moment to consider and respect those other US citizens impacted directly by your beliefs and desires. Guns are not allowed in the Capitol and that seems absolutely okay by many pushing this initiative. Leave our campuses alone for open debate, for confrontation without fear, for our youth to mature and make good and, yes, even bad decisions without immediate access to arms and escalation of conflict. Since 2016 Universities and communities have increased police training, staffing, and support under the bequest of Deal's clearly articulated VETO. You can read it here. It is a well written and clearly measured rebuttal of guns on campuses. https://gov.georgia.gov/press-releases/2016-05-03/deal-issues-2016-veto-statements

Elizabeth Chapman
Elizabeth Chapman

A 2nd amendment enabled VETERAN getting his College Education Should NEVER Be Denied the Right to Carry on Campus when he's carried in a DAMNED WAR! Wake up, Folks... All College Students aren't Immature teenagers who just left home to get drunk & party! Many are War hardened men & women who can protect life on campus as they're THERE when something goes down, NOT the COP! Also, Women have Every Right to Carry as their Lives & Safety are Endangered daily on many Campuses! As an Mature Adult Female, WHY Should I Be Denied MY Right to Carry should I go back to the University to Pursue another Career Degree? I have Zero Interest in being an Easy Target for Criminals... or traveling in two's when I've been Independent for 50 yrs!

Mimi DeArman Outlaw
Mimi DeArman Outlaw

Depends on how much $$ Deal can get from the gun lobby! They all sell out to the highest bidder. As trump says, "sad"!

Cecelia Landress
Cecelia Landress

As an educator.... No guns on campus. His actually standing up on this was about the only good thing he has done.

Scott McDonald
Scott McDonald

In Ga you can open and conceal carry on bars. Even Wyatt Earp knew that was stupid...

Joe Corrado
Joe Corrado

He vetoed it last year on Constitutional grounds. There is no democratic (a majority/overwhelming majority of profs/a nearly unanimous consensus of University presidents who oppose guns on campus. After all- who thinks that the gun carrier's ideas are Better than the sane student/prof/parent/Dean/president of a university?

Burt Baker
Burt Baker

Damn. Really didn't want to send the boy to Auburn.

Marilyn Hupp
Marilyn Hupp

Why dont u pass constitutional carry. Its our constitutional right

Richard Outler
Richard Outler

take a training class and get a permit no problem

Ed Helton
Ed Helton

I wonder what he would do if the State Capital was open carry? How fast would that be vetoed

Brent Hilburn
Brent Hilburn

Campus Carry is about location... There are already 19 exemptions in the law that allow carry on campus. In order to legally carry on campus, you have to have passed at least TWO FBI background checks, be 21 years of age (except with military service) and have a valid GWL from your county Probate Judge... TODAY, it is legal to carry across the street from EVERY college in GA... This bill simply allows them to legally cross the street with their firearm... But please, continue on with your unhinged hysteria about firearms...

Mike L Curtiz
Mike L Curtiz

He's trying to comprise and have his education reform bill passed.

Monte Poitevint
Monte Poitevint

A gun on campus sounds like excellent protection from unhinged leftwing lunatics.

Rod Miller
Rod Miller

Like the noxious Soros-funded trolls that lurk 24/7 on GNN

Doug Rogers
Doug Rogers

And the racist bigoted uneducated deplorable has to spout his hate and lies. We can always rely on Monte Poitevint to say something ignorant. Glad to know you white supremacists terrorist will always be there to embarass the real Americans.

Mark Cosby
Mark Cosby

Dylan Roof was a racist right wing confederate flag loving nutbag. All of these shootings of Sikhs and Indian men lately, racist xenophobe right wing idiots who believe they're protecting the whiteness of their country. Left wing? Get a clue, my friend.

Joseph Schriefer
Joseph Schriefer

..and right on cue a couple of those unhinged leftwing lunatics appear to post...

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

As a soldier and future student. It makes no sense that a constitutional right would be infringed based on a location in which I find myself. A campus is not a foreign country, it is still in the country in which the constitution still is the law.

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

Mark Cosby then get off the Internet and go back to the printing press. That argument is always so dumb. The right to bears arms is the last line of defense against tyranny. Tyranny will not be using muskets. That argument never wins because it's just stupid. It's something a 7 yr old would say.

Mark Cosby
Mark Cosby

The constitution says "arms". How do we know they didn't just mean your two arms attached to your torso?

Jackie Cranford Sherwood
Jackie Cranford Sherwood

So in being what you apparently deem as clever do you believe the Revolutionary War was won by Patriots holding out their arms and going "bang, you're dead," with their hands? We would not then be a country at all if that were so. We would still be under the yoke of the British.

Mark Cosby
Mark Cosby

You're all for a strict reading of the constitution. I'm just taking the constitution at its word. If you're being so literal about the American Revolution and the constitution, fine I'll go with it. I'm perfectly okay with open carry of 18th century muskets, you know, in case campuses are invaded by Red Coats.

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

Yes too many unstable people out there that will not obey a silly law and endanger students. I'll bring my gun.

Cecelia Landress
Cecelia Landress

You can leave them at home with all the rest of the students once you become one. And when you leave campus you can carry again. Being military you should realize the number of unstable people out there with guns. Too many unbalanced people out there to make an exception to the rule.

Robert C Bergl
Robert C Bergl

Unless the campus can guarantee my safety, they have no right to infringe on my ability to do so myself.

Rod Miller
Rod Miller

Criminals carry everywhere, Dems and RINOs want the law-abiding citizen to be a sitting duck

Mark Cosby
Mark Cosby

You're living in a world of paranoid delusion.

Rod Miller
Rod Miller

Could you be more out-of-touch with Georgia?

Doug Rogers
Doug Rogers

By your moronic reasoning some people ignore the law so let's do away with the DUI laws, let's make it ok to commit murder, theft ok you want it take it. There is nothing in the 2nd amendment that says you have a right to carry a gun in public. That is how the courts have ruled. And don't bring up Heller that was about gun ownership, Heller had no desire to carry his gun anywhere but at his work. The cases from Hawaii and California if they get reviewed will at best get a four four split. There is a good possibility that SCOTUS will not hear the cases they made it clear in Washington 2nd amendment is about gun ownership.

Len Craft
Len Craft

No. This is a religious rite for the 2nd amendment zealots. There doesnt have to be a reason just an opportunity to expand their footprint. Their god carrys a Glock.

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

As a soldier I believe in the 2A. I do not believe it to be a religious right. It is an inherent right. The constitution only guarantees this right. So stop being pretentious

Len Craft
Len Craft

Sorry but its an accurate comparison. The gun rights types take things to an extreme without rational thought or any willingness to compromise over the issue. To them there are no limits to this right and no matter how far they go theyll always want to go further. The law in Kennesaw a while back requiring heads of households to own a firearm is a case in point.

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

Kennesaw law isn't enforceable and the city even said so. My right to carry does not end at the property line of a campus. I'm still in my country that the constitution covers.

Len Craft
Len Craft

Shea there are a number of property lines you cant cross carrying a gun. Airport loading terminals, court buildings that screen for weapons, sports venues, and bars are just a few.

Mark Cosby
Mark Cosby

So you believe you should be able to walk strapped into a preschool? What about schools in neighborhoods with gang violence where they check people with metal detectors for their own protection? What about courthouses and government buildings? Should folks be able to stand before a judge, innocent until proven guilty, and await their verdict strapped with a 9mm? Nowhere in the constitution does it say felons cannot have guns, yet they're restricted. How do you feel about that? There are plenty of places where firearms are curtailed. Nearly every nutbag shooter got their weapons legally so the legislation you support would enable them to walk around freely with their weapons and the best hope is that some 'good guy with a gun' will stop them? Simple question: Under what circumstance would it be okay to restrict guns?

Richard Outler
Richard Outler

without guns the country would have fallen already. stay armed my friends

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

I apologize. I should not have called him an idiot. The mentally ill need help I know. This irrational fear of guns and blatant lies are a mental defect that can be helped with the proper help

Len Craft
Len Craft

I have a permit and carry a 45 when i deem it necessary.

Len Craft
Len Craft

Yes it is and it took a full on battle with the gun lobby to make that happen

Len Craft
Len Craft

Does that matter to a 2nd amendment purist like you?

Joseph Schriefer
Joseph Schriefer

lennie, guess what all those places have that a college campus doesn't...screened entry that everyone must pass through

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

Those are private property or areas of security issues. Just stop.

Joseph Schriefer
Joseph Schriefer

Does the fact that every argument you can bring up is so easy to shoot down matter to you? [pun intended]

Len Craft
Len Craft

Joe Bob i dont see you as having shot down any of my arguments. The gun worshippers will never stop trying to erase the lines that maintain a civilized society.

Len Craft
Len Craft

Ah finally we get to the name calling. The last refuge when youre bankrupt of ideas. I thought someone wrote his constitutional right to be armed doesnt end at a property line.

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

Personal property rights are on equal footing of the other inherent rights. I have no right to infringe your rights, as you have no right to infringe mine. Public property has no personal property rights. Therefore campus carry on public land is constitutional

Shea Chamberlain
Shea Chamberlain

For being in the 82nd, you don't know the constitution very well.

Matt Steffney
Matt Steffney

Len Craft You know full well that a background check is integral to the permitting process in Georgia.

Len Craft
Len Craft

And you know that there will always be reasonable exceptions made. The argument is over what constitutes reasonable. I think turning untrained and inexperienced 21 year olds loose with guns is a problem. You see it as a celebration. You should have to do more than show a drivers license and pay 75 dollars to get a permit. Where you believe we shouldn't have to have a permit or background checks at all

Len Craft
Len Craft

And right now time you are trying to do away with permits and background checks or is the phrase "constitutional carry" not familiar to you.

Joseph Schriefer
Joseph Schriefer

Len Craft Of course you don't, lenny john, people have a hard time accepting they are wrong.

Matt Steffney
Matt Steffney

Len Craft Permitless carry is now the law in a dozen states. The mayhem that the anti-gun movement screeched about has never materialized.

Elizabeth Chapman
Elizabeth Chapman

Burt Baker So did the Guys the Muslim Shrink in Texas Murdered! And they weren't even in their Barracks! They shouldn't have needed their guns where they were... but now they're DEAD!

Burt Baker
Burt Baker

Shea Chamberlain study a little. You will find that Constitutional rights are not absolute. There are time, place ,and manner restrictions on free speech, for example. When I was on active duty we were not allowed to have Fire arms to n the barracks. Then I got a law degree and found out why.