Senator Hawley, Congressman Smith Introduce U.S. Military Right to Carry Act

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Today U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) and Congressman Jason Smith (R-Mo.) introduced legislation in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives to ease the burden active duty military servicemembers face when renewing concealed-carry licenses while stationed outside of their state of residency. The U.S. Military Right to Carry Act allows servicemembers to renew their permits by mail and requires states to treat members of the military equally to state residents in issuing concealed carry permits.

“The military men and women who serve our country shouldn’t face endless red tape in order to exercise their constitutional right to carry firearms and maintain their concealed carry licenses. I’m proud to stand up for our service members and for their Second Amendment rights with this legislation.”

Senator Josh Hawley

“The brave men and women of the United States military should not face any discrimination when it comes to their concealed carry permits,” said Congressman Smith. “If a member of the U.S. Armed Forces holds a concealed carry permit, they should be able to renew that permit by mail or be treated as a resident of the state in which they are stationed. My bill is a critical step in ensuring the constitutional rights of our military members are protected regardless of where they’re stationed, allowing them to protect themselves, their families, and their communities.”


Active duty servicemembers on orders outside of their home states often face difficulties maintaining their concealed-carry licenses or obtaining them because of in-person or state-resident-only requirements. Many states require concealed-carry license renewals through in-person appointments, creating bureaucratic barriers for military personnel who may be stationed elsewhere. Additionally, states often require residency in the state to permit concealed-carry licenses, so servicemembers who regularly move around to different duty stations may have difficulty obtaining concealed-carry weapon licenses.

The U.S. Military Right to Carry Act

  • Provides active duty servicemembers the option to renew concealed-carry weapon licenses by mail in their state of residency;
  • Requires state governments to implement a law to consider active duty servicemembers as residents of the state for purposes of issuing a permit to carry a concealed firearm in that state; and
  • Reduces a state’s federal grant funding if it refuses to offer military members these options for concealed carry licenses.