South Carolina Becomes 29th Constitutional Carry State

On Thursday, South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster (R) signed a bill into law that made his state the 29th to institute constitutional carry.

The legislation, which passed in the state Senate by a vote of 28-18 on Wednesday, will take effect immediately. The South Carolina House passed the bill on Tuesday by a vote of 86-33, mostly along party lines, after it was cleaned up in a legislative committee made up of three House and three Senate members.

Under the law, firearms will still be banned in certain places, such as schools, courthouses and the state Capitol building. Penalties for individuals, like felons, who carry guns illegally are also increased in the law. It also allocated funding for free firearms training to be offered twice a month in every county in the state.

McMaster signed the bill into law during a private signing ceremony on Thursday. A ceremonial, non-private signing will be scheduled for a future date.

“With my signature, South Carolina is now the 29th state in the country with constitutional carry. This bill expands the Second Amendment rights of our law-abiding citizens and will keep violent criminals behind bars with increased penalties for illegal gun use and possession,” McMaster wrote in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Palmetto Gun Rights executive director Tommy Dimsdale celebrated the bill as a victory for gun owners.

“Our only thing is, the government should not be the ones being able to tell you who can and cannot have that permit. When you need protection, you need it now. And that’s very important. We were born out of individual responsibility, and that’s what, you know, we need to be exercising instead of government laws keeping us from being able to, you know, have our Second Amendment rights,” he wrote in a statement.

South Carolina now joins 28 other states that have instituted constitutional carry — Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming.