POLITICS
12/26/2012 11:27 am ET Updated Dec 26, 2012

Jay Nixon: Arming Teachers 'Would Put Our Children At Risk'

Citing "serious concerns" about safety, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon (D) has come out against proposed legislation that would let teachers in his state come to school armed.

In the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, which took the lives of 20 first-graders and six adults, state legislators filed a bill that would allow teachers with concealed weapon permits to carry guns in school.

Under current Missouri law, only members of law enforcement are allowed to carry a weapon into a public school.

On Monday, Nixon sent a letter to public school superintendents, affirming his opposition to the bill, according to Webster Groves Patch.

"I have serious concerns about recently introduced legislation that proposes not only to arm teachers, but to do so by taking away the authority of local school districts to keep guns out of classrooms," Nixon wrote. "More can and should be done to enhance school safety, but this legislation would put our children at risk and limit the ability of local school districts to keep their schools safe."

While Nixon, who won re-election to a second term in November, is a Democrat, Missouri has a Republican-controlled state legislature.

As a grieving nation asks how to avoid mass shootings in the future, a number of national figures, from Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) have suggested that arming teachers might help prevent school violence.

On Friday, the National Rifle Association broke its silence to comment on the Connecticut school shooting. In a widely-panned public appearance, NRA leader Wayne LaPierre blamed gun violence on everything from video games to the media, and advocated placing an armed officer in every school in America.

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