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story.lead_photo.caption FILE - The Arkansas Senate meets Monday, Jan. 28, 2013. - Photo by Lee Hogan

— The Arkansas Senate approved Senate Bill 71 on Monday, which would allow concealed guns in participating churches.

The bill, called the Church Protection Act of 2013, passed the Senate by a 28-4 vote. The bill will now go to the Arkansas House of Representatives for a vote.

If the bill passes through the House, Gov. Mike Beebe would have to sign the bill into law for it to take effect.

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Senate Bill 71: The Church Protection Act of 2013

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An Arkansas Democrat-Gazette article reported that a Beebe spokesman said the governor was neutral on the bill and would likely sign the bill if it came to him.

Arkansas Senate approves guns in church bill

The Arkansas Senate approved Senate Bill 71, the Church Protection Act of 2013, by a vote of 28-4 on Monday. The bill will now go to the Arkansas House of Representatives for a vote. If the the bill passes the House and Gov. Mike Beebe signs the bill into law, concealed guns would be allowed in churches. (By Lee Hogan)
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Read more on this story in Tuesday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

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  • Jackabbott
    January 28, 2013 at 4:01 p.m.

    This bill is not good for Arkansas. It is addressing a "problem' that does not exist, it will create a 'bad' national public image for Arkansas and deter decent companies from wanting to locate their companies here. Who wants to go to church not knowing if the person seated behind you could shoot you.
    Christ drove the moneychangers out of the temple, now these infidels want to bring guns into churh, This is not the Gaza strip or Irag.
    When are these bozos going to do somthing about the dismal ceconomy and jobs, the high cost of gasoline and building some better highways?

  • RonalFos
    January 28, 2013 at 4:22 p.m.

    Churches who allow weapons should be forced to post a notice so people can decide if they want to enter the building or not.

  • Packman
    January 28, 2013 at 4:30 p.m.

    Hey jackabbott - "When are these bozos going to do somthing about the dismal ceconomy and jobs, the high cost of gasoline and building some better highways?" You must be talking about BH Obama and his demorat collegues in Washington. Surely you are based on BH Obama's priorities (taking constitutional rights away from law-abiding citizens (gun bans), wholesale amnesty for ciminial behavior (illegal immigration), trying to make a lifestyle choice a civil right (GBLT marriage), and working to help kill as many unborn children as he possibly can (abortion) that have nothing to do with improving the economy, creating jobs, or building roads. I guess that's why they call him "Obozo".

  • 000
    January 28, 2013 at 4:38 p.m.

    I can't figure out how the leg had any right to ban guns in churches to begin with. That option should ALWAYS have been the church's perogative. Congregations can do as they please inside the sanctuary, much to Jack and Ron's dismay, it appears.

  • DontDrinkDatKoolAid
    January 28, 2013 at 5:01 p.m.

    Why should the Government regulate our rights ever?

  • djigoo
    January 28, 2013 at 5:49 p.m.

    The "Arkansaw Traveler" books and jokes didn't damage the image of this great state as much as today's Arkansas Republicans do.

    Note that I take great pains to include the word "today's." Believe it or not, at one time, in the Land Of Opportunity, one could simultaneously be a Republican AND a sentient human.

    Weird, but TRUE!

  • Straytrooper
    January 28, 2013 at 5:58 p.m.

    My thoughts exactly Pobucker.

  • djigoo
    January 28, 2013 at 6:09 p.m.

    For decades, I have taken great pains to disabuse other Americans of their stereotypical image of Arkansawyers.

    $h!t like this undoes my efforts.

  • R0B0
    January 28, 2013 at 7:49 p.m.

    This is a move in the right direction. Eliminating "gun free zones" in itself will act a deterrent instead of an invitation. For those uncomfortable with sitting next to someone with a concealed gun, think about this- as a concealed carry permit holder, you automatically KNOW that I Have no felony convictions (lifetime), have not had a class A or class B misdemeanor in the last 5 years, passed both state and federal fingerprint and background checks and have had no delinquent conduct within the last 10 years. Now, how about the other guy your sitting next to? How much do you KNOW about him?

    Addressing a problem that doesn't exist? Jan. 27, 2013 (yesterday) three gunman walked into a Baptist church in East St. Louis and robbed the congregation at gunpoint. 50 people were inside the church. I'm sure some of them thought there was "no problem to be addressed" and I'm sure even more thought themselves to be safe.

    All of these recent acts of senseless violence we are seeing in the news occurred in a "gun free zone" and none were committed by a concealed cary permit holder. Criminals aren't going to obey the law, that's why they're criminals.

  • Trailer
    January 28, 2013 at 8:11 p.m.

    There is a difference between a weapon and a gun.... A weapon is a gun used in an offensive manner, which should not be allowed in church, but a gun should be there to defend against stupid people that do stupid things.

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