The National Rifle Association and Gun Rights Groups will meet at the White House on Thursday to figure out a prevention plan for tragedy. However in Jefferson City, lawmakers kicked off the new session Wednesday saying it’s not a priority in Missouri.While lawmakers laid out priorities and agendas the only people really talking about guns were the people watching the news from Washington.Nationally there are meetings taking a better look at what will likely be recommendations to ban high-capacity magazines and renew a ban on so-called assault weapons. All spurred by a year of bloody headlines such as Aurora, Milwaukee, and Sandy Hook.However, in Jefferson City Republican Senate leadership made it clear they’ll let the feds figure this one out. “There is a national debate occurring on guns and I think that’s where that debate should occur, on the federal level,” said Republican Senator Tom Dempsey of St. Charles.When ABC 17 News asked Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler about gun reforms she said she’s keeping her eye more on Missouri law. “I think it certainly has some merit, especially if there is some training to it – so it will be interesting to see what the Missouri legislature does in that regard,” Said Hartzler. Hartzler is talking about a house bill that would allow teachers with conceal carry permits to bring their guns to class. “It’s one piece of a really big puzzle, but it’s a piece that we need to look at, it’s a piece that we need to work on,” said Republican Representative Mike Kelley of Lamar.Sponsor Kelley said Senate leadership’s right, this shouldn’t be a priority. However, it’s something the people at the capitol need to talk about and he’ll work with whatever he gets.”You know, House Bill 70 is not going to pass in its current form. I wouldn’t pass it in its current form because I have already found amendments that I think would make it a better, safer bill,” said Kelly.It’s a bill, likely the only bill, to protect, so while Washington waits and worries over recommendations Missouri will watch and wait for Washington.Representative Kelley said school districts actually already have the option of approving conceal carry permits on their campuses. Strengthening and educating about that point may be a change Kelley makes to his bill. It clear from Kelley himself that the Bill is a work in progress, but it’s likely to be the only gun-related legislation we see this session.
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