The House has voted to make concealed weapon permits issued in one state valid in every other state that allows people to carry concealed firearms.

The first pro-gun bill the House has taken up this year was approved by a sizable majority, with gun rights Democrats joining a solid block of Republican supporters. It now goes to the Democratic-controlled Senate, where its chances for passage are less certain.

Every state except Illinois has some sort of concealed carry permit. Many have reciprocity agreements with other states, but the legislation would ensure that permit holders could carry a concealed weapon in the other 48 states with permit systems.

Democratic critics said the bill would force states with strict standards on issuing permits to accept permits from states with weaker requirements.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)