Missouri lawmakers pass gun rights amendment

May 7, 2014

Credit Gregory Wild Smith via Flickr

Missouri lawmakers have given final approval to a proposed amendment to the state Constitution intended to strengthen the right to bear arms.

The Republican-led Senate voted 23-8 on Wednesday to send the bill to the November ballot. The proposal passed the House a day earlier with a 122-31 vote.

The amendment would define the right to bear arms as "unalienable" and require the state to defend against any "infringement" of that right. It would also include defending one's "family" with a firearm as a guaranteed constitutional right.

Supporters say the measure would force courts to use a higher standard of review when considering the constitutionality of gun controls.

It would also specify that the Legislature could still impose restrictions on gun ownership for convicted violent felons and the mentally ill.