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Gun pre-emption bill wins first-round approval in Nebraska

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) _ Nebraska is one step closer to overturning local gun restrictions in Omaha and Lincoln that are stricter than state law.

Lawmakers gave first-round approval to a gun-rights pre-emption bill on Wednesday with a 32-12 vote. Supporters overcame a filibuster by opponents who want to protect existing local rules.

Supporters say the bill would eliminate a confusing patchwork of local gun-possession rules that legal owners unintentionally violate when they travel.

Opponents say the bill would allow out-of-state gun groups and residents to sue cities even if local rules haven’t harmed them directly.

The measure includes some exceptions for Omaha after the city’s police union warned that it could hinder their ability to fight gang violence.

Two more votes are required before the bill heads to Gov. Pete Ricketts.

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