Arkansas Senate Approves Bill to Allow Firearms in Churches - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Arkansas State Senate Approves Bill that Would Allow Firearms in Churches

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LITTLE ROCK (KATV) - Arkansas lawmakers are tackling a controversial topic where religion, personal freedom, and individual protection collide. A senate bill that would let religious leaders decide whether guns should be permitted inside churches took a big step towards becoming law.

This bill floundered in committee two years ago, but today the Senate passed the proposal on to the Arkansas House emphatically.  Legislators debated the bill at length on the senate floor this afternoon, but in the end the measure carried through following a 28-4 vote. 

The proposal would allow churches to let folks with concealed carry permits bring firearms inside, but each individual religious leader can decide what's best for their house of worship.  If the bill becomes law church officials will essentially have three options:  they can continue to ban firearms inside, choose to allow just one or a few people to carry guns, or they can let anyone with a concealed carry permit bring weapons to their church.

Now the House will have to decide whether the bill reaches Governor Beebe's desk.