JEFFERSON CITY - Journalists could face prosecution for printing Gov. Jay Nixon's name if lawmakers override the veto of a bill making some federal gun laws invalid.
The bill makes the enforcement nullifies some federal gun laws, allows appointed teachers to carry guns in school, and prohibits the publishing of gun owner's names or identifying information, online or in print.
Wednesday an attorney for the Missouri Press Association, Jean Maneke, sent a warning out to members, telling them to prepare for what could happen if legislators override the veto.
"We don't know what is going to happen in terms of prosecuting offenders of this new law. If you are a gun owner, and you write a story that carries your byline, will you be prosecuted? If you publish a story about a member of your community who owns a gun, will you be prosecuted?" Maneke wrote.
Gov. Jay Nixon owns a gun, and Maneke said writing his name could get journalists in trouble if lawmakers override the veto.
"It wouldn't matter whether it's the governor, or your local sheriff, or a criminal, any of those people," Maneke said.
In Nixon's veto message he wrote the bill violated the constitution as well as freedom of speech.
Bill sponsor Rep. Doug Funderburk, R-St. Peters, said he does not believe the bill violates freedom speech, nor did the council he spoke with.
Though Funderburk did not initially propose the provision of the bill prohibiting the publishing of gun owner's names, he said he wholeheartedly supports it.
"When it is passed into law, this type of information that is not public information, can be much more secure and Missourians can be much more confident that it is," Funderburk said.
He said he believes it was put on the bill after the publication of gun owner's addresses after the Sandy Hook tragedy in Connecticut, as well as what he calls the state's licensing department's mishandling of conceal carry permit holder's information.
Supporters said the bill will protect Missourians' second amendment rights.
In a statement, House Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka, wrote the bill "seeks to affirm our rights as a state by pushing back against a federal government that has far exceeded the authority it was intended to have by our founding fathers."
Maneke said she believes many lawsuits will be filed if the lawmakers successfully overturn Nixon's veto. Lawmakers have the chance to do so Wednesday Sept. 11.