US gun law put to vote for first time

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The Independent Online
CAMPAIGNERS ON either side of the vexed US gun debate will be watching Missouri today as it becomes the first state in the US to take a vote on the right to carry a firearm.

The referendum is viewed across the country as a barometer of support for tougher restrictions, which are favoured by the Clinton administration.

"Proposition B" asks voters to approve the legal "right to carry a concealed weapon" the standard expression for the right to bear arms in public. It contains a string of safeguards, including denying the right to convicted or wanted criminals, which proponents of the measure say match the toughest in any part of the United States.

Missouri has been one of only seven states in the US where it is not legal to carry a concealed weapon. There are 12 states where the right is restricted, but it is legal in 31 states.