Conn. Attorney General thinks Florida has weak eligibility requirements for a pistol permit?

During an interview with Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen this morning with Jim Vicevich on the big radio show, Jepsen mentioned multiple times that Florida hands out pistol permits too easily as compared to Connecticut. Let’s look at the requirements shall we?

From the Florida Department of Agriculture’s website.

Eligibility Requirements

  • You must be 21 years of age or older.
  • You must be able to demonstrate competency with a firearm.
  • Unless you are serving overseas in the United States Armed Forces, you must currently reside in the United States (US) AND be a US citizen or deemed a lawful permanent resident alien by Department of Homeland Security, US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). If you are serving overseas in the US Armed Forces, submit a copy of your deployment documentation with your application. If you are not a US citizen, submit documentation issued by the USCIS proving you are a permanent legal resident alien with proof you have resided in the state of residence (as shown on your application) for at least 90 consecutive days prior to the date the application is submitted.

Proof of residence includes, but is not limited to:

  • Monthly utility, telephone, power, or cable bills, which show your name and address.
  • Monthly pay stubs or other documentation from your employer, which show your name and address.
  • Monthly credit card statements, which show your name and address.

Possible Reasons for Ineligibility:

  • The physical inability to handle a firearm safely.
  • A felony conviction (unless civil and firearm rights have been restored by the convicting authority).
  • Having adjudication withheld or sentence suspended on a felony or misdemeanor crime of violence unless three years have elapsed since probation or other conditions set by the court have been fulfilled.
  • A conviction for a misdemeanor crime of violence in the last three years.
  • A conviction for violation of controlled substance laws or multiple arrests for such offenses.
  • A record of drug or alcohol abuse.
  • Two or more DUI convictions within the previous three years.
  • Being committed to a mental institution or adjudged incompetent or mentally defective.
  • Failing to provide proof of proficiency with a firearm.
  • Having been issued a domestic violence injunction or an injunction against repeat violence that is currently in force.
  • Renouncement of U.S. citizenship.
  • A dishonorable discharge from the armed forces.
  • Being a fugitive from justice.

Detailed explanations of these various disqualifying conditions are provided in the Application for the Concealed Weapon/Firearm License.

Next, here is Connecticut’s eligibility requirements.

Applicants must be at least 21 years old and be a legal resident of the United States. Persons convicted of a felony or any one of 11 misdemeanor offenses detailed in the statute are ineligible to receive a permit. Persons convicted as a delinquent for the commission of a serious juvenile offense (as defined in section 46b-120); persons discharged from custody within the preceding twenty years after having been found not guilty of a crime by reason of mental disease or defect (pursuant to section 53a-13); persons confined in a hospital for persons with psychiatric disabilities (as defined in section 17a-495), within the preceding 12 months by order of a probate court; persons subject to a restraining or protective order issued by a court in a case involving the use, attempted use or threatened use of physical force against another person; persons subject to a firearms seizure order issued pursuant to C.G.S. 29-38c after notice and hearing; and any person who is an alien illegally or unlawfully in the United States, are prohibited from obtaining a pistol permit.

You are required to complete a handgun safety course, which must consist of no less than the NRA’s “Basic Pistol Course,” prior to submitting the application. The NRA’s “Home Firearms Safety Course” and “First Steps Pistol Orientation Program” are not approved courses.

Live fire is also required. Computer-generated programs, dry-fire, other simulated shooting tools, plastic bullets, air guns or any other alternatives are not acceptable. Students must fire a semi-automatic pistol or revolver.

You will also be required to submit to a background investigation, criminal history check and submit fingerprints and photographs in connection with your application. The licensing statute also contains a “suitability clause” which provides that the issuing authority may deny such application, if it determines that the applicant is not a suitable person to possess or carry a pistol or revolver. The suitability clause applies both to the issuance of new permits and revocation of existing permits. Applicants must provide proof you are legally and lawfully in the United States, such as a birth certificate, or U.S. Passport. Legal Alien Residents must provide Alien Registration numbers and 90-day proof of residency. Naturalized citizens require proof of citizenship.

Despite what Jepsen said in the interview, Florida has quite detailed eligibility requirements that seem to include everything Connecticut requires and more.

Maybe the more stringent requirement Jepsen is referring to is Connecticut’s extremely vague (on purpose) suitability clause? If so, would Jepsen let me know what would fall into the “not suitable” category for Connecticut, that is not listed in Florida requirements?

Second question for Jepsen. In his letter encouraging our senators representing Connecticut in Washington, D.C. to vote no for national permit reciprocity he writes.

Connecticut has one of the lowest per-capita rates of death due to firearms in the country, due in large part to our sensible gun-control laws that keep guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals, but leave law-abiding citizens and sportsmen alone.

In short, I’m going to politely ask the attorney general to prove it. Prove Connecticut’s per-capita rate of death rate is lower than other states due in large part to our state laws that are somehow better than other states with a higher per-capita death rate.

If Jepsen chooses to reply, I’ll include his full response in a separate post.

I found it interesting Jepsen mentioned state’s rights. I must have missed his letter to Connecticut’s Washington delegation encouraging them to vote no for the mandates placed on states when it comes to Obama’s health care legislation. How does he feel about No Child Left Behind for that matter?

Posted in ,

Steve McGough

Steve's a part-time conservative blogger. Steve grew up in Connecticut and has lived in Washington, D.C. and the Bahamas. He resides in Connecticut, where he’s comfortable six months of the year.


  1. phil on November 21, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    As a (mostly) law-abiding, permitted citizen, it would be cool if laws, rules and regulations were readily and understandably available.? May I carry in elementary schools?? Colleges?? Hospitals?? Burger King?

    • Steve M on November 21, 2011 at 12:29 pm

      Phil, you may want to read this post as it will provide you with some information. Note it is NOT legal advice.

    • phil on November 22, 2011 at 9:49 am

      Steve, I remember the post.? Helpful the, heplful again.? Thanks

  2. Plainvillian on November 21, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    Criminals are not deterred by gun control laws but they would be discouraged by an armed citizenry.

  3. JBS on November 21, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    George Jepsen, a.k.a. George Jetson, is the most dangerous kind of politician, one who thinks he knows what is best for the people. For years, he has been a rabid “gun banner” and totally against the Second Amendment. Anything said by this man is suspect. That he even brings up the subject of Florida’s firearms laws is immediately suspicious. Why?
    And then to make up a spurious causal relationship between Connecticut’s firearms laws and a “lowest per-capita rates of death due to firearms in the country, due in large part to our sensible gun-control laws”??? Faint praise from a lawyer who made his political bones ramming through an ill-conceived and injurious “assault weapons ban” and a ban on certain “large capacity ammunition clips (sic)”. Nothing Jepsen has to say should be considered as anything but posturing for another assault on the law-abiding, legal firearms owners in this state. That he even mentions Florida and their firearms laws is deeply troubling!
    Watch out Connecticut, and Florida, a new attack on firearm ownership is brewing in the Democrat gun banner’s minds! Jepsen is a flack for the anti-gun Democrat policy pushed by billionaire George Soros and…

  4. essneff on November 21, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    No law or amount of paperwork and fees?can keep a gun out of the hand of a criminal…… they will find a way…. see??New Haven?& tell me that the CT restricitve ability to purchase & obtain a permit to carry a?firearm has made that city anything less? than the 4th most violent city in the US……. and that’s a fact!

  5. ricbee on November 21, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    ?The CT Constitution Article 1,section 15 says that every law abiding citizen can have a gun in his home & business. But a 1995 law has made it impossible for anyone without a carry permit to bring a handgun to his home.???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? I’ve been legally carrying for more then 10 years & will always carry from this day on,permit or no.

  6. Dimsdale on November 22, 2011 at 11:41 am

    Makes you question the eligibility requirements for attorney general, doesn’t it?

  7. PatRiot on November 22, 2011 at 11:59 am

    Hey George, thanks for the heads up as to where you are going.
    By the way, protecting one’s self is like free speech, it is a right that goes with a person everywhere.? Sea to shining sea.?
    So, if you wish to further curtail the right of self protection?within your state, will you also curtail?the right of free speech?

  8. Tim-in-Alabama on November 23, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    Guns are terrible. All gun manufacturers in Connecticut and Massachusetts should relocate to terrible places like Alabama where people like and carry those horrible guns.


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