Kaul Takes His Name Off of Concealed Carry Licenses

Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul has removed his name from concealed carry licenses issued by the Department of Justice. Since the state began issuing licenses in November 2011, they have featured the Office of the Attorney General's seal with the name of the Attorney General underneath it. Now, however, the phrase "Office of the Attorney General" appears instead of "Josh Kaul, Attorney General."

When the same resident first obtained a concealed carry license several years ago, everything on his license was identical except for the wording underneath the Office of the Attorney General seal.

When Brad Schimel was elected Attorney General in 2014, he continued the practice of listing his name on all concealed carry licenses.

However, after Kaul was sworn in in January, he stopped listing his name under his office's seal. Repeated requests for comment from the Attorney General and the Department of Justice were not returned.

Kaul has been a vocal supporter of gun control measures including universal background checks and a ban on bump stocks. In his inaugural address, he proposed a "red-flag law," which would allow law enforcement to temporarily confiscate firearms from individuals deemed to potentially pose a danger to themselves or others. The proposal is highly controversial, as it allows for the seizure of private property without due process.

During a debate with Schimel in October, he vehemently opposed allowing teachers to carry concealed weapons in the classroom as a way of stopping school shootings.

"I don't want students in any city in Wisconsin to go to a school where teachers are armed," he said. "It introduces a danger that is not present right now. It's not safe for our kids. The people who should have firearms near a school are police officers."

Three weeks ago, he wrote a letter to the State Legislature indicating that a December Supreme Court case would allow him to revoke a number of concealed carry licenses from holders who have had their criminal records expunged.

Because the Court ruled that expunging an individual's record "does not invalidate the conviction," Kaul reasoned that "without legislative action, concealed carry licenses must be revoked from individuals with an expunged felony conviction."

Kaul has not yet begun to revoke permits from those with expunged records. He has, however, already expunged his name from the permits his office issues.

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