Yesterday, the Texas Senate has voted to advance a bill that will allow people to carry handguns in the state without a license, setting up the state to be the largest in the country to allow permitless carry.
Texas Senate passed HB 1927, which would allow Texas residents 21 and older that are not “otherwise prohibited by state or federal law” to carry a handgun without a permit.
The legislation passed by an 18-13 margin along party lines Wednesday evening and had already cleared the Texas House on April 16 by a margin of 84-56. Multiple changes were made to the version of the bill that the Senate signed, so it’s been sent back to the House.
The bill now heads to the House, which passed similar legislation earlier this year but will not consider changes the Senate made to the bill before sending it to Gov. Greg Abbott’s (R) desk.
The Senate passage of the legislation marks a significant victory for gun rights activists and Republicans, who had seen permitless carry legislation goes nowhere in previous legislative sessions.
Texas will be the 5th state this year to pass a Constitutional Carry law.
Looks like Texas will be the fifth state this year to adopt Constitutional Carry. 21st state overall.
Just eight states still have discretionary and discriminatory “may-issue” carry laws still on the books. https://t.co/rI61OETyL1
— Cam Edwards (@CamEdwards) May 6, 2021
After Abbott signs the bill into law, anyone 21 and older who has passed a background check and is legally eligible to carry a handgun can do so without licensing or training.
Any expansion of constitutional rights is a good thing and although many members of law enforcement oppose Constitutional Carry, we certainly haven’t seen a significant number of negative effects from it anywhere it has been passed. That’s because the problem in America is not and never has been legal gun owners. On the contrary, although it’s very difficult to pin down the exact numbers, we can confidently say that the overwhelming majority of gun crime in America is committed by people that illegally possess firearms. It’s not your NRA member neighbor next door that’s going to rob you in a dark alley, it’s going to be a criminal with an illegal firearm who probably isn’t eligible to have a firearm because of his record. It’s great to see more states, like Texas, recognizing that fact legislatively.