Ariz. Senate backs guns in eateries serving booze

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PHOENIX (AP) -- The Arizona Senate wants to allow people with concealed-carry permits to take guns into restaurants that serve alcohol.

The Senate on Friday gave preliminary approval to a bill that would partially undo Arizona's ban on possession of firearms in bars and restaurants selling alcohol. The person carrying a weapon would not be allowed to drink.

The bill would allow restaurants to still deny entry by gun-toting citizens by posting a sign.

Supporters of the bill contend the ban deprives law-abiding citizens of the means to protect themselves and puts their guns at risk of theft if left in parked vehicles.

Critics contend the bill could lead to confrontations and expose businesses to increased liability and higher insurance costs.

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