Beshear Not Concerned About Capitol Gun Policy

Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear sees no reason to change the current “open carry” policy for handguns at the State Capitol. Beshear says he feels comfortable and safe in the building. But even if he wanted to alter the policy, Beshear says he doesn’t have the authority.

“Gov. Patton did issue an executive order at one point I think banning weapons in the capitol. And that’s what caused the laws to arrive at where they are today and that is, the legislature is in control of that issue, and not the governor,” he said.

Reacting to the shootings in Tucson, Arizona, that left six dead and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords with a gunshot wound to the brain, Beshear agrees with those who say it’s time to tone down the political rhetoric in the nation.

Beshear says people can disagree without being disagreeable. He calls the shootings, “a blot on democracy.”

By Tony McVeigh

Veteran broadcast journalist Tony McVeigh has been covering Kentucky politics since 1986, reporting for Clear Channel Communications before joining Kentucky Public Radio in 2004. His stories are aired by seven KPR affiliates, whose signals blanket the Commonwealth and parts of surrounding states. McVeigh began his broadcasting career at WRFC in Athens, Georgia, while earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Georgia. He has extensive anchor/reporter experience, including stints with South Carolina Network and Georgia Radio News Service in Atlanta. In 2007 and 2008, McVeigh was named Best Radio Reporter in the Kentucky Associated Press Awards. He also picked up consecutive AP Awards for Best Political Coverage. McVeigh won four Kentucky AP Awards in 2009, six in 2010 - including Best Political Coverage and Best Hard News Feature - and three in 2011. His coverage of the 2007 Kentucky governor's race topped the Political Reporting category of the Society of Professional Journalists Green Eyeshade Awards of 2008. In 2009, McVeigh placed second in Courts and Law Reporting in the Atlanta-based competition for journalists in 11 Southern states. McVeigh is also the proud recipient of an Individual Liberty Award from the Kentucky Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. The Brunswick, Georgia, native is a die-hard UGA football fan who enjoys photography, astronomy, live music, hiking Kentucky's Red River Gorge and exploring the state's beautiful back roads. McVeigh and his big, fat, black cat Simon, reside in Frankfort, KY.