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Ohio Legislature passes broad gun law

COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 16 (UPI) -- A law allowing Ohio gun owners with the appropriate permit to take their weapons almost everywhere, including bars, has passed the state Legislature.

Gov. John Kasich is expected to sign the measure, The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported. If the bill becomes law, Ohio will have one of the most liberal firearms policies in the country.

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The House of Representatives approved the bill Wednesday night. The Senate voted to accept a change in the bill soon after.

Supporters of the bill point out that 42 states allow licensed concealed handguns in restaurants. Opponents say few states allow them in bars and football stadiums.

"We're really pleased. Finally. We've been working on this for three years," Jim Irvine of the Buckeye Firearms Association said. "We're only trying to help Ohio catch up to the 1990s. Ohio is really just catching up to almost every other state in the country."

Rep. Bill Patmon, a Democrat representing Cleveland, offered an amendment, which failed, to exempt stadiums.

"An open-air arena is no place for a 9mm [gun]," he said.

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