Speaker Vos temporarily pumps brakes on campus carry bill - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Speaker Vos temporarily pumps brakes on campus carry bill

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MADISON (WKOW) -- The leader of the Wisconsin State Assembly is temporarily pumping the brakes on a proposal that would allow people to carry guns on on college campuses in the state.

It has been legal to carry a concealed firearm in Wisconsin for over five years, but not on the grounds of any school.

Rep. Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum) wants concealed permit holders to not only be able to carry on campus, but in the classrooms as well.

Rep. Kremer introduced the same bill in the last session, but it never got a hearing.

"There were comments made by some other legislators that I think hampered those efforts that my office had been working toward, which actually may have slowed this down and pushed us back a couple of years," Rep. Kremer told 27 News Tuesday.

Speaker Robin Vos (R-Burlington) said he is open to the idea this time around, but with certain conditions.

"Find people to support it. Get groundswells of support to bring an idea here, not just convince a bunch of people in our caucus to pass a bill without making sure that the public is where we are," said Speaker Vos.

Rep. Kremer said he's trying to do just that.

"I'm learning as a legislator, new legislator yet - only doing this two years - that I need to get the message out better," said Rep. Kremer.

While Democrats don't have enough votes to challenge such a bill in either house, they will vocally oppose it.

"Having people with guns in areas where - quite likely - tensions are higher is not the answer," said Rep. Melissa Sargent (D-Madison).

UW System officials and some UW-Madison student leaders also oppose the idea. Speaker Vos said he wants to afford them and others the chance to express such concerns.

"I think a lot of it, frankly, is a red herring. I'm not as concerned about it as some people are. But I certainly want to listen to their comments and see if there are ways we can address them so it doesn't just become a scare tactic or a political problem," said Speaker Vos.

Rep. Kremer said he is working on a number of bills related to the second amendment and is unsure exactly when he will introduce new campus carry legislation.

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