Gov. Asa Hutchinson said this afternoon that he would “announce his intentions” on HB 1249, the dramatically expanded campus carry bill, at 10 a.m. Wednesday.
A member of his staff had told me earlier today that he “likely” would sign the bill Wednesday, the last day for it to pend before becoming law without his signature.
Get me the fainting salts if a veto issues tomorrow. Hutchinson had initially indicated something close to opposition to the original bill when it merely required univesity to allow staff with concealed carry permits to have weapons on campus. But he expressed satisfaction with an amendment that allowed campus carry for those who got 16 hours of additional training in active shooter situations. The NRA objected to that version of the bill and eventually the legislature passed a bill with expanded concealed carry rights with up to 8 hours of additonal training. But it opened that privilege to anyone with a permit and not only on campus but also in public buildings, churches and bars.
Hutchinson has been targeted with a fierce lobbying effort against the bill, which was opposed by every college in Arkansas and many in law enforcement. Perhaps he’ll appoint a task force.