Automatic concealed-carry bill moves forward in Va.

WASHINGTON — Domestic violence victims who take out a protective order in Virginia would automatically get the right to carry a concealed weapon under bills set for final approval as soon as this week.

The Virginia Senate approved the House version of the legislation 27-13 on Monday, with all Republicans and several Democrats supporting the bill.

“A victim can already open carry if they are lawfully allowed, and in this case this would simply allow them, in that window of time when they are most vulnerable, to concealed carry,” said Sen. Jill Vogel, R-Fauquier County.

She sponsored the Senate version of the bill that is now ready for a final vote.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe vetoed similar legislation last year, which allowed people who take out a protective order to skip training requirements.

“It is not wise to interject more firearms into a situation that is already volatile,” Sen. Barbara Favola, D-Arlington, said Monday.

“If we can’t make our protective order process work, this is not the best alternative. We have to find an alternative that works within the judicial system,” she said.

In addition to a 45-day temporary right to carry a concealed weapon, the bill provides for an additional 45 days if the person who took out the protective order then applies for a regular concealed carry permit.

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