Local Politics

Ellmers plans to carry gun in public

Posted January 20, 2011

— In the wake of a mass shooting that critically injured one of her fellow lawmakers, Republican 2nd District Congresswoman Renee Ellmers said Thursday that she plans to carry a gun when making public appearances.

"We have to protect ourselves. We know that. That is something we have always been cognizant of,” Ellmers said.  "There have been times in the past I have carried my weapon, and I will probably continue to do so. Some days I might have it. Some days I might not."

The longtime nurse and Dunn resident obtained a concealed-carry permit in February after passing a state-certified firearms training course and a background check.

She said the Jan. 8 shooting in Tucson, Ariz., in which six people were killed and Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot in the head, steeled her resolve to be armed.

“I feel safe with it, and I think we should all be able to defend ourselves as we need to,” Ellmers said.

Congresswoman has permit, will carry Congresswoman has permit, will carry

Still, she said, she's not taking all security in her own hands. Her staff keeps in touch with local law enforcement in Washington, D.C., and across her 10-county congressional district.

"(We) make sure they're aware of the situation, and they have been more than helpful to us," she said.

She said she doesn't want so much security that she can no longer interact with constituents. "I love giving out hugs. I love getting hugs," she said.

Harnett County Sheriff Larry Rollins said his deputies are ready to provide security at any event if a politician asks for it – or if they hear of a potential threat against a public official.

Rollins said Ellmers has a constitutional right to carry a gun, and he said he thinks it's good for her to be armed at times.

"Sometimes, it may not make any difference, but it has a potential to make a difference, I think, always," he said.

Democratic 11th District Congressman Heath Shuler also has said that he plans to carry a gun while in public. Republican 9th District Congresswoman Sue Myrick told The Charlotte Observer that she's a good shot and likely would carry a gun when she felt the need to do so.


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  • cwmllc1952 Jan 25, 2011

    Ellmers since being elected has been a disgrace to NC.I have a Conceal Carry Permit but I have the common sense to keep quiet about it.She has certain obligations to the people who elected her and all the people of NC.None of which seems to be at the top of her list.

  • blackdog Jan 21, 2011

    ...Maybe some of you guys are right. Maybe I'm not paranoid enough. I'm usually so busy with "What Is", to be concerned about all of the "What Ifs". Maybe I need to carry an AK47 Krikov, with three magazines hooked together, everywhere I go. I guess, you never know...Why not be prepared for anything that lives or breathes on this planet threatening me...?....

  • oldcorp Jan 21, 2011

    Why is the prospect of a person who wishes to take a measure to help ensure their personal safety looked on with such incredulity? Reading this GOLO board, it's very evident that the Eastern US mentality continues to be looked on as bleating sheep, looking to government for their total safety.
    Attitudes are much different in the western portion of the country where people have a degree of self-reliance.
    As a 30 year LEO, I can tell you that LE cannot be on every corner at every minute to help every person at every moment.
    Ms. Ellmers is simply utilizing a right given us by the 2nd Amendment. Good for her. Remember: 'front sight and press'.

  • UNC006 Jan 21, 2011

    Smith W- Exactly, you made my point on cue. The name calling confirms the extent of the affliction...

  • Remy Jan 21, 2011

    I can see the headlines now: Ellmers hears gunshots. She searches for her purse. Where did I leave it? Under the table, on the back of my chair? On the floor? She reaches into a purse the size of a suitcase, (can't even see her elbow),finds her gun, takes it out of the case, releases the safety and looks up to locate the shooter, only to find she is the only one around because everyone else has already run away or ducked behind some kind of cover.

  • 6079 SMITH W Jan 21, 2011

    Really? How doth thou arrive at that conclusion? It seemeth thou assumist that anyone that don't vieweth FOX "news" MUST be getting their personal opinion from their arch-nemesis, which is everybody else on TV. I've never had cable TV in my entire put-together....I've heard of Ed, but I have never seen his show. Think of something else...I'll give you time to consult your talking-points. Feel free to wait until Monday, after Rush "The Painkilla Gorilla" Limpbaugh issues the newest three-hours hate. ;)

  • elcid liked Ike Jan 21, 2011

    "elcid892: You are talking Democrats, but I am not talking Republicans. There are a lot of moderate conservative Democrats in the 2nd District. "

    Of course I am. A moderate Democrat being elected in the 2nd still returns the seat to Democratic control. I don't expect a far left winger to get elected in the 2nd. I just expect it to go blue again in 2012, especially, as I said earlier, if unemployment doesn't dramatically improve in the district.

    Otherwise the campaign signs will read "Still unemployed? Ask Renee why ..."

  • UNC006 Jan 21, 2011

    Smith W- Dude, you've been watching a too much of Ed Schultz it seems.

  • wildcat Jan 21, 2011

    Thanks for allowing my comment.

  • wildcat Jan 21, 2011

    have a good weekend and be safe.