UPDATE: Snyder veteos concealed weapons bill

6:38 PM, Dec 18, 2012   |    comments
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Video: Gun law

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder / Detroit Free Press file photo
 PDF Document: SB 59 Veto Letter 12 18 12

LANSING, Mich. (DETROIT FREE PRESS, AP& WZZM)-- Gov. Snyder Tuesday vetoed gun legislation allowing concealed weapons in churches, schools and daycares.

The measure would have allowed gun owners with extra training to carry their concealed weapons in schools, churches, day care centers and stadiums.

The veto comes just four days after a horrific shooting in Newtown, Conn., in which a heavily armed 20-year-old muscled his way into the Sandy Hook Elementary School and killed 20 first graders and six adults.

Snyder's office released this statement Tuesday afternoon:
"This type of violence often leaves society with more questions than answers. The reasons for such appalling acts usually are numerous and complex. With that in mind, we must consider legislation like SB 59 in a holistic manner. While the bill's goal is to help prevent needless violence, Michigan will be better served if we view it through a variety of lenses. A thoughtful review that examines issues such as school emergency policies, disenfranchised youth and mental health services may lead to more answers and better safeguards."

It appears Governor Snyder had concerns about the bill days ago, giving hints he would veto it. On Tuesday religious leaders from around the state held a prayer vigil outside the capitol. They were members of a group called Michigan Prophetic voices. Several of them met with one of the governor's staffers who informed the pastors that Snyder had just vetoed the bill.

Pastor Ben Sandin of Shelby Township said, "There's been incredible public outcry for this issue that people do not want this in their communities and so I can only assume that the governor has heard those voices.

In a statement, Governor Snyder said the veto was mostly because the bill failed to let schools, hospitals, day care centers and other public facilities opt out of the new concealed carry provisions. Regarding gun violence in general, Snyder called for a holistic approach that examines school emergency policies, disenfranchised youth and mental health services that may lead to more answers and better safeguards.

Snyder came under intense pressure in recent days from religious, medical and education groups to veto the bill and President Barack Obama called on the nation to take definitive action to ensure that no such tragedy happens again.

Snyder came under intense pressure in recent days from religious, medical and education groups to veto the bill and President Barack Obama called on the nation to take definitive action to ensure that no such tragedy happens again.

The bill passed late Thursday in the final hours of a frenetic lame duck session, in which all sorts of controversial legislation was passed and sent to Snyder. But the bill didn't reach Snyder's desk until Tuesday afternoon.

As soon as word leaked out that Snyder planned to veto the bill, groups opposed to the legislation lauded the governor for his action.

"Gov. Snyder is making the right call by rejecting this dangerous legislation," said Zack Pohl, Executive Director of Progress Michigan. "This is a victory for school safety and common sense. We need more math and science teachers in our classrooms, not more guns. Snyder deserves credit for finally standing up to the extreme forces in his own party. Now it's time for Lansing politicians to get their priorities straight and start working together to create jobs and improve education."

Detroit Free Press

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