GOCRA Press Release



John Caile Minnesota Gun Owners’ Civil Rights Alliance

Minnesota Handgun Carry Permit Holders Pass 75,000 Mark

In just over seven years, more than 75,000 law-abiding citizens have undertaken the training, background checks and expenses of obtaining a Minnesota Permit to Carry a Pistol, often erroneously referred to as a “Conceal and Carry” permit.

St. Paul, Minn, June 3, 2010 – Just over seven years after its passage, the Minnesota Citizens’ Personal Protection Act of 2003 has resulted in over 75,000 people who now have active carry permits, a 500% increase over the number in effect before the law was reformed.

According to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, there were 75,583 active permits as of May 31, 2010.

The MCPPA, passed in 2003, allows any U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident who has taken state-approved training, paid a fee, and passed strict criminal, chemical abuse and mental health background checks to receive a five-year permit to carry a handgun in most public places.

Under the prior, “may-issue” law, those seeking a permit needed to convince local law enforcement officials that they had a personal or professional need to carry a pistol. Police chiefs and sheriffs had almost unlimited discretion to issue or deny a permit, for any or no reason, and permit issuance varied widely from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.

After the law was briefly overturned in court in July 2004, based on the “single subject” rule, the Minnesota legislature re-passed it in May 2005 as a stand-alone bill, by an even wider margin than before.

“Increasingly, personal protection is becoming more widely and socially accepted,” said David Gross, a criminal defense attorney, member of the GOCRA board, and long-time advocate for the right of self defense. He points at the recent controversy manufactured by gun control advocates over law-abiding citizens carrying holstered guns into Starbucks coffee shops. Starbucks refused to give in to demands that it ban gun-carrying customers.

“That is literally visible here in Minnesota, too,” he said, “The number of ‘bans guns’ signs continues to dwindle as businesses return the respect shown by gun owners.”

Even vocal opponents of the law, like former Olmsted County Sheriff Steve Borchardt, revised their opinions as law-abiding Minnesotans remained law abiding after earning permits.”The fact is the sky didn’t fall,” he told KARE11 in 2005. “The fact is it worked pretty seamlessly.”

The latest Minnesota Department of Public Safety permit report, as well as a history of permit counts, can be found on the GOCRA web site at

For additional information, contact John Caile, Minnesota Gun Owners’ Civil Rights Alliance, at (612) 240-6080.

About Minnesota Gun Owners’ Civil Rights Alliance:

GOCRA and its subsidiary, Concealed Carry Reform, NOW!, worked for seven years to secure passage of the Minnesota Citizens’ Personal Protection Act, and continues to act as the state’s gun rights watchdog, defending and advancing the human right of self defense in the state of Minnesota.