North Carolina – Grass Roots North Carolina and gun rights supporters made history today. Senate Bill 41 cleared its final hurdle and will become law after both chambers of the North Carolina General Assembly voted to override Governor Roy Cooper’s veto. SB 41 is the first override of a Cooper veto since 2018 and the first-ever override of a vetoed gun bill in North Carolina.
SB 41 repeals North Carolina’s Jim Crow-era pistol purchase permit law. It closes the loophole under which concealed carry has been prohibited in churches that sponsor schools, giving those churches the same protections that most NC churches have enjoyed since 1995.
Yesterday, SB 41 cleared the NC Senate in a party-line vote of 30-19, giving Republicans the expected 6/10 supermajority to override Cooper’s veto.
The NC House then fast-tracked the bill, taking it up as its first order of business this week. Clearly, Speaker Tim Moore was in no mood to permit grandstanding by anti-gun Democrats as Rules Chair Rep. Destin Hall immediately offered a motion to “move the previous question,” a procedural maneuver that closes all debate and forces an immediate vote on the bill. With all House Republicans voting for the bill, SB 41 passed the House by a vote of 71-45, narrowly exceeding the necessary 6/10 supermajority.
It should be noted that Rep. Michael Wray (D- Halifax, Northampton, Warren), who was a co-sponsor of a similar bill and had voted for SB 41 the first time, apparently did not vote. It is not clear whether that was due to a deal with Republicans, or whether he sold out Second Amendment supporters. However, Rep. Shelly Willingham (D-Bertie, Edgecombe, Martin), who voted for SB 41 last time, reneged on his public statement that he would not change his position on the override. By voting “no” on the SB 41 override, he clearly betrayed gun rights supporters. Also unknown as of this writing is whether the other three Democrats who did not vote were present in the chamber.
GRNC president Paul Valone said:
“Second amendment supporters made history today. In passing Senate Bill 41, we achieved the first override of anti-freedom Governor Roy Cooper’s many vetoes since 2018, and the first-ever override for a gun bill in North Carolina. Grass Roots North Carolina promised to deliver defeat to Cooper’s door, and we delivered on that promise.
“Second Amendment advocates owe thanks to Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, Speaker Tim Moore, Rules Chair Destin Hall; sponsors Sens. Danny Britt, Warren Daniel, Jim Perry; and all of the Republican legislators who voted for and supported SB 41 and similar bills. I encourage leadership to leverage this success by joining twenty-five other states in passing constitutional carry.
“I also thank the many volunteers and supporters Grass Roots North Carolina who made this victory possible by contacting legislators and walking the halls of the legislature.”
About Grass Roots North Carolina
Founded in 1994, Grass Roots North Carolina is an all-volunteer 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving individual liberties guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights with emphasis on the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.