The National Association for Gun Rights (NAGR) is doubling down on its criticism of organizations fighting against constitutional carry bills in Alabama’s upcoming regular session.

The Alabama legislature is scheduled to convene on Jan. 11 for its regular session. Many issues will be presented for deliberation and debate. Among the bills to be deliberated will be several constitutional carry bills.

HB44, put forward by Rep. Andrew Sorrell, would dissolve the need to have a permit to carry a weapon in the state legally.

HB66 (Stringer), SB1 (Allen), and SB12 (Melson) would repeal certain location restrictions for carrying firearms, including cars and courthouse annexes.

NAGR has launched a grassroots campaign “exposing the deception of Alabama sheriffs who are lobbying lawmakers in Montgomery to oppose Constitutional Carry legislation in 2022.”

"Constitutional Carry" is a colloquial term that refers to laws that allow citizens, who can legally possess a handgun, to carry that handgun openly or concealed without paying a tax or obtaining a government permit.

“It’s sad that certain sheriffs are actually fighting against restoring gun rights to law-abiding Alabamians," said Dudley Brown, President of the National Association for Gun Rights. "Constitutional Carry laws simply recognize what we all know to be true – that the government should not force you to get a permit in order to carry a handgun."  

According to a press release from NAGR, the Alabama Sheriff’s Association (ASA) is one of the leading opponents to constitutional carry and has even teamed up with anti-gun organizations. 

“The main fallacious argument from the ASA is that passing Constitutional Carry [bill] stops people from voluntarily obtaining permits and causes a rise in crime,” the statement read. “But the data is clear: Constitutional Carry states are among the safest in the country, and there is no negative impact on permits when Constitutional Carry becomes law.”

The release claims that the ASA has teamed up with Mom’s Demand Action (MDA).

MDA is a national coalition that attempts to address gun violence in America. It has supported many efforts to push “stronger gun laws” in Alabama, including the red-flag laws, “gun sense,” stronger background checks, and safer gun storage. The MDA website makes several claims regarding gun laws, including “Stand your ground laws are a license to kill,” and “the gun lobby enshrines guns as tools of the extreme right.”

“Spreading lies and inciting fear in an attempt to kill a pro-gun bill is the same kind of underhanded tactics we see from radical leftists across the nation,” Brown said. “It’s a shame that many sheriffs in Alabama have resorted to this. That’s why we’re mobilizing our members and supporters in Alabama – cranking up the pressure to make Alabama the 22nd Constitutional Carry state.” 

NAGR has been a long-time critic of Alabama’s politics dealing with constitutional carry, specifically Alabama Sheriffs. NAGR was an outspoken critic of the firing of an Alabama sheriff and State Representative, Shane Stringer. In 2021, Sheriff Sam Cochran fired Sheriff Shane Stringer over his support for constitutional carry.

NAGR hopes that 2022 will be the year in which Alabama joins the growing list of states that have passed constitutional carry.

“For far too long the Alabama legislature has done nothing to restore gun rights which have been unconstitutionally taxed and regulated,” Brown said. “But we’ve made passing Constitutional Carry into law our number one priority in state legislatures all around the country -- and we’ll keep lobbying in Alabama until it’s done.” 

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