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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
UPDATED 3:18PM FRIDAY 12/12

SOURCE: Texas State Rifle Association PAC (email)

EDITED: The TSRA PAC just posted (3:18pm Friday 12/12) a CORRECTION to the previously posted email. The corrected version is what is now posted below:

Pre-filed Bills and the 2015 Session

(Note that the bill numbers are each hyperlinked to the actual filings)


Why Pre-File a Bill?

After the November general election Texas legislators are permitted to pre-filing legislation in preparation for the coming session. Often the reason for this strategy is to obtain a low bill number or to make a strong policy statement on behalf of constituents back home. Bills do not necessarily move through the process in number-order. Last session 6,000 bills were filed and 1/6th of that number passed.

Open Carry Pre-filed

The first open carry bill to be pre-filed was HB 106 by Rep. Dan Flynn (R-Van). Rep. Flynn's bill would remove the concealment requirement for over 811,000 Texas licensees. Texas would have a handgun license, continue to enjoy reciprocal agreements and still use the license as voter identification and to satisfy NICS for firearm purchases. The bill is similar to that filed in 2011 and 2013 by Rep. Lavender.

An open carry bill was filed by Rep. James White (R-Hillister). HB 164 is also similar to that filed by Lavender.

HB 195 by Rep. Jonathan Stickland (R-Bedford) deals with open carry of a handgun and is the only version not requiring a state-issued license.

HB 291 by Rep. Dan Huberty (R-Houston) allows licensed open carry and is also similar to HB 700 from the 2013 session.

Rep. Debbie Riddle (R-Tomball) filed HB 415 allowing those with a handgun license to carry a holstered handgun.

HB 106, HB 164, HB 291, and HB 415 are could be called licensed open carry bills.

HB 195
would not require a license.

The bills listed above with links are variations of open carry of a handgun. Other open carry bills will be filed!

We currently have 23 bills on the watch list dealing with firearms, firearm ownership, concealed handgun law, hunting, or enforcement of certain laws. More information will follow in coming weeks. Filing ends March 13th.

Look over the flow chart (see link below) as a reminder on the complexity of creating or changing Texas law.

Session begins the 2nd Tuesday in January, January 13th. Inauguration Day for Governor Abbott and Lt. Governor Patrick is Tuesday, January 20th. The Speaker must be elected by House members, both chambers must decide and vote on their rules of operation, committee chairmen named, members assigned to committees, and then bills assignments.

Again, bill filing ends on March 13th. Session ends around Memorial Day.
 

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Hopefully some if not all will get passed.:thumb:
 

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I hope Texas does pass open carry...
 

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Hopefully you Texans can OC soon. Here in WV we can, but I never have.
 

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Unlicensed open carry is working very well here in Mississippi. I would love to have the open carry option when I come to visit friends and family. My Texas CHL is still valid and I own a home in Texas so I think I would be legal either way. Knowing Texas politics, I'm not holding my breath though.
 

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I still find it just ....weird ... that states that allow carrying , don't have open carry as the basic carry level.

I mean, in NC, anybody age 18 or older, can open carry without any type of permit or license as long as you are legally able to possess a gun IE: no felony or other issue that prevent you from carrying.

You'd think that if there were any restrictions, it would be on concealed before open carry. Not saying weather there should or shouldn't be any restriction on concealed, but you would think concealed would be restricted BEFORE open carry.
 
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I am pulling for HB195.

We should not need to beg Austin for permission to carry!
 
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It will depend on if they elect a conservative for speaker. If that doesn't happen, not one of those bills will see the light of day in the house.
 

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While i I agree, until all states have this we need a license to have reciprocity.
I'm not saying stop issuing licenses. I would do something like Arizona where you can get a license if you want and that license would also be a vehicle for reciprocity.

That way people could choose.
 

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The Texas Constitution has it's own version of the Second Amendment:

Sec. 23. RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS. Every citizen shall have the right to keep and bear arms in the lawful defense of himself or the State; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to prevent crime.

The bold part was added in the late 1860's and is the source of the problems with open carry of handguns. We should probably amend our constitution to eliminate that portion.
 
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The Texas Constitution has it's own version of the Second Amendment:

Sec. 23. RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS. Every citizen shall have the right to keep and bear arms in the lawful defense of himself or the State; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to prevent crime.

The bold part was added in the late 1860's and is the source of the problems with open carry of handguns. We should probably amend our constitution to eliminate that portion.
Amen, I could not agree more!!!!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Several news stories today on TEXAS OPEN CARRY:

AP: Texas weighs allowing open carry of handguns

Texas weighs allowing open carry of handguns By JIM VERTUNO 9 hours ago

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Long depicted as the rootin'-tootin' capital of American gun culture, Texas is one of the few states with an outright ban on the open carry of handguns.

That could change in 2015, with the Republican-dominated Legislature and Gov.-elect Greg Abbott expected to push for expanded gun rights.

"If open carry is good enough for Massachusetts, it's good enough for the state of Texas," Abbott said the day after his election last month.

And if Texas, which allows concealed handguns, embraces open carry — rolling back a 140-year ban — it would be the largest state to have done so.

Open carry drew wide support in the 2014 statewide election, and at least six bills have already been filed for the upcoming session, which starts in January. Abbott has already pledged to sign one into law if sent to his desk.

Coni Ross, a 63-year-old rancher in Blanco, carries a handgun in her purse for personal protection and said she'd like the option to carry it openly on her belt if she could. She already does when she's on her ranch and feels comfortable with her gun by her side.

"In one-and-a-half seconds, a man can run 25 feet with a knife in his hands and stab you before you get your gun out," Ross said. "If your weapon is concealed you're dead."

Most of the country already allows some form of open carry of handguns, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, a California-based group advocating gun control legislation.

But Texas, California, Florida, New York, Illinois and South Carolina, which make up more than a third of the U.S. population and include six of its seven largest population centers, do not.

Large urban areas have traditionally had the strictest controls on weapons in public because of concerns over guns in crowds and crime control, said UCLA law professor Adam Winkler, author of "Gunfight: The Battle over the Right to Bear Arms in America." He said it's "pretty surprising" that Texas still has an open carry ban that dates to the 1870s.

"We've been regulating guns in the interest of public safety, even in places like Texas, since the founding," Winkler said. "The battle over open carry of guns in public remains one of the most heated in the gun debate today."

Of the states that ban open carry, Texas easily has the most gun-friendly reputation.

From manufacturers to dealers, Texas has the most federal firearms license holders in the country. It has few restrictions on gun ownership, and Gov. Rick Perry and state lawmakers have actively lobbied gun makers to move to the state.

Texas allows the public display of long guns, such as rifles and shotguns, and open carry advocates have staged high-profile rallies at the Alamo and state Capitol. Concealed handguns are allowed inside the Capitol, where license holders can bypass metal detectors.

But Texas still insists handguns be kept out of sight.

Texas first banned the carrying of handguns "when the carpet-bagger government was very anxious about former Confederates and recently freed slaves carrying firearms," state Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson said.

Overturning a century of law proved difficult, and a concealed weapons law failed several times until it finally passed in 1995 when Patterson, then a state senator, led the charge. Texas now has about 811,000 concealed handgun license holders, nearly equal the population of San Francisco.

Even among gun supporters in Texas, the idea of open carry was considered too radical when the concealed carry law passed. Since then, the Legislature has expanded gun rights incrementally. It made the licensing of concealed handguns easier and, during the last three sessions, held heated debates over concealed handguns on college campuses. Open carry backers believe these debates helped rally support to their cause and that an open carry law will pass.

Open carry opponents, such as Moms Demand Action for Gun Safety in America, say carrying guns on the street is less about gun rights than intimidation.

"There is no way to know ... if that person is a threat to moms and our children," said Claire Elizabeth, who heads the group's Texas chapter.

Despite the early momentum, there are no guarantees open carry will pass. Bills to allow concealed handguns on college campus appeared to have widespread support in 2009, 2011 and 2013, but were derailed by objections from universities and law enforcement.

Most of the open carry bills already filed for the upcoming session would still require a license. One, by Rep. Jonathan Stickland, R-Bedford, would eliminate the licensing requirement for concealed or open carry.

"The idea is we're going to return our Second Amendment rights," Stickland said. "I can't imagine what the citizens would do if they had to take a class or pay a fee to use their First Amendment rights."


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Same AP story on Dallas CBS-TV tonight: http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2014/12/14/texas-weighs-allowing-open-carry-of-handguns/

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
REUTERS news story on OPEN CARRY and other 2nd Amendment Issues
Texas lawmakers put new gun rights laws in their sights

Texas lawmakers put new gun rights laws in their sights By Jim Forsyth 12 hours ago


By Jim Forsyth

SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) - Several proposed new gun laws await the new Texas legislature when it opens next month, including one to allow open carrying of handguns in public and another providing a sales tax holiday for firearms purchases.

The Republican-dominated legislature will become even more conservative due the party's landslide win in the November election, with many members pledging to expanding firearms rights in the state often seen as an incubator of conservative policies nationwide.

Proposed measures would ban cities and counties from restricting gun rights and try to have any new federally imposed restrictions on firearms declared illegal in Texas. Lawmakers are also looking to prohibit schools from punishing students who fashion their breakfast pastries into the shape of a gun.

"We have so many gun bills that have been filed that we can't have anything but an open carry law passed next year," said C.J. Grisham, founder of the activist group Open Carry Texas.

The group has been pushing for the unlicensed open carrying of handguns, pointing to laws in Texas and elsewhere that allow for the unlicensed open carrying of long guns such as rifles.

Current Texas law grants citizens the right to carry concealed handguns with a permit.

An open carry measure seems likely with nine pieces of legislation up for consideration and Governor-elect Greg Abbott, a Republican who takes office in January, saying he supports the move.

There has been some push back after members of Open Carry Tarrant County were criticized for endangering public safety by staging rallies this year where armed members took to streets, stores and restaurants seeking support for their cause.

In response to a wave of school shootings across the United States, some conservative Texas lawmakers advocate measures that would make it easier for teachers and administrators to carry weapons, arguing that this is a way to prevent violence.

A so-called "Pop-Tart bill" to bar punishment for children who make firearms inferences has attracted much attention. It was inspired by the case of a Maryland school that suspended a second-grader for chewing a breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun.

"The bill is a proactive effort to prevent even the chance of a Texas student losing valuable instruction time due to an act of non-disruptive, non-threatening behavior by a child," said State Representative Ryan Guillen, a Democrat sponsoring the bill.

(Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Tom Heneghan)
 

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Sure hope one of these open carry bills passes.

Let your Texas State Representative know how you fell and incourage them to get it done.
 

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Sure hope one of these open carry bills passes.

Let your Texas State Representative know how you fell and incourage them to get it done.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram over the weekend (Cant remember if it was saturday or sunday) said that open carry of some sort was one of 5 major policy initiatives to watch for.
 

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I hope Texas does pass open carry...
a little birdie told me that banning OC for pistols is what led to people open carrying their rifles instead. Is there any truth to that? Because it seems a much better reason than some of the current people carrying their ar15 to the local bank and the friendly neighborhood wallyworld.
 

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a little birdie told me that banning OC for pistols is what led to people open carrying their rifles instead. Is there any truth to that? Because it seems a much better reason than some of the current people carrying their ar15 to the local bank and the friendly neighborhood wallyworld.
I have often wondered if this being Texas a state with deep roots in western history, had the Open Carry demonstrators carried lever action rifle which are more often thought of being part of the cowboy wild west, rather than AR evil black assault rifles would there have been such a stink of negative press and public disapproval shown.
 
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