A pair of weekend rallies in Lewiston and Coeur d'Alene attracted scores of Idahoans interested in passage of what they call "constitutional carry" legislation in the Gem State.
The Idaho Second Amendment Alliance launched the series of rallies in September, with gatherings in Twin Falls, Pocatello and Rexburg. The group, which goes by the shorthand name ID2AA, pushes for the right to carry weapons, openly or concealed, without a permit.
The Lewiston Tribune reports the Oct. 2 rally in Lewiston's Locomotive Park went on as planned, one day after a gunman killed nine people and wounded several others at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Ore.
"We remember them. We pray for them," said ID2AA President Greg Pruett. "For us, it was, 'Hey, we can prevent these types of tragedies or try to prevent these types of tragedies by allowing more people to defend their lives.'"
This morning's Coeur d'Alene Press reports another rally was held Oct. 4 in Coeur d'Alene City Park.
“We saved the best for last,” Pruett told the crowd. “The reason that we’re out here traveling all over the state is because we know there are thousands of Idahoans who want permit-less carry in Idaho and who are sick and tired of seeing other states get it done before us.”
Idaho Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, took the microphone at the Coeur d'Alene rally as well:
“We believe in personal liberties and freedoms, and we believe the majority of people want to protect and strengthen our Second Amendment Rights,” she said. “This is not a party issue. This is an American issue.”
ID2AA officials said their biggest rally will take place in February 2016 on the steps of the Idaho Statehouse, when the Idaho Legislature gavels back into session.
"Yes, we've been working with Reps. Scott and [Ron] Nate on some proposed constitutional carry [legislation]," Pruett told Boise Weekly. "Years ago, I thought this would have been an open-and-shut issue in Idaho. That was a little naive. But now it's all about getting our legislators to understand how important an issue this is."