State lawmakers began debate Wednesday on a proposal to allow people to carry concealed guns in Nebraska without a permit.
Currently, 25 other states have so-called constitutional carry laws that allow people to carry concealed guns without a permit.
Sen. Tom Brewer, of Gordon, who introduced the bill, opened debate by noting it would not usurp current requirements for federal background checks to buy guns or stop businesses from banning guns in their establishments.
'A person in Nebraska should not have to pay money to the government to exercise their constitutional right,' Brewer said.
Nebraska already allows gun owners to carry firearms in public view, as long as they don’t have a criminal record that bars them from possessing one and aren’t in a place where guns are prohibited. To legally conceal the gun, Nebraskans are required to submit to a Nebraska State Patrol background check, get fingerprinted and take a gun safety course at their own expense.
Opponents have vowed to fight passage of the bill and were expected to use procedural moves to delay a vote on it.
A similar bill in Nebraska failed last year to overcome a filibuster led by opponents.