Think Idaho's elected leaders have to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon? Think again.
Reporter Eric Fink explains Video by IdahoOnYourSide.comvideo
Elected leaders throughout Idaho get special privileges from a law created exclusively for them.
"The elected officials law came about because it was made by elected officials and elected officials who knew other elected officials," Ada County Sheriff Gary Raney said.
The law to which Raney refers, allows any person elected by voters in the state of Idaho to carry a concealed weapon without a permit. This select group doesn't even have to take a training class.
The law stunned Casey Phelan who took her seven-hour concealed carry weapons training just last week.
"The Constitution states very clearly that our elected officials are no better than the regular citizens," Phelan said. "They should and have to abide by the same laws and rules as we do. They're not better than us. And, so if we have to abide by the laws why aren't they not having to abide by them?"
Former Canyon County police officer turned concealed carry instructor, Mark Layman advocates training for elected leaders but stops short at requiring them to obtain a license.
"There are some elected officials that I know that are retired law enforcement officers," Layman said. "They've got piles of training. So, should they go through another course when they've been doing 30 years of it? No."
Nampa lawmaker Christy Perry says she knows many of her colleagues carry concealed weapons.
A Boise gun shop owner, Perry argues elected leaders should not have to get a permit because voters put their faith in their representatives to make the right decisions.
"Do we have to legislate to such a point that we have to break it down piece by piece by piece?," "There is an amount of trust put into an elected official and we trust their judgment."
Sheriff Raney, elected three times to lead Ada County, says this part of the concealed carry law should change.
"Take a basic safety class," Raney said. Maybe [elected leaders] don't have to pay the fee, maybe they don't have to get the license, but it makes good sense that any elected official that's going to carry a gun, carry it responsibly."