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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) The Alabama Senate has voted to allow people to carry a concealed handgun without a getting a permit.

Senators approved the bill on a 25-8 vote Tuesday. It now moves to the Alabama House of Representatives.

The bill has been heavily criticized by some law enforcement officers who say the permits are needed for public safety. Republican Sen. Gerald Allen of Tuscaloosa, the bill’s sponsor, said that people shouldn’t have to pay to exercise their Second Amendment rights.

 

According to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, 11 states allow concealed carry without a permit. Most of those states still issue concealed weapon permits, as would Alabama, for people who may want them to carry in other states.

Democrats accused Republicans of trying to “rebrand” their party after scandals.

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