Texas Republicans have approved a bill that will allow a person to carry a gun without a permit or license.
House Republicans in Texas have approved a “constitutional carry” bill, called House Bill 1927, allowing Texans to carry a handgun without a license. The current law in the state requires gun owners to have a permit to carry a gun openly or concealed. After several hours and an 84-56 vote, Fox News reports the bill was pushed forward.
The bill was lead by Rep. Matt Schaefer (R), who said, “It’s time to restore faith in law-abiding Texans.” If the bill is approved, Texas will be the largest of 20 states that allow a no-permit carry. “This bill should be called common-sense carry,” he added.
Schaefer said the bill should be put into law because everyone can’t afford to pay for a license, which can range from $100 to $150. Applicants must also go through a background check, and their criminal history will be looked into with the current state law for carrying handguns. Texans who want to buy commercial guns would still have to go through a background check.
The bill isn’t sitting well with many, including the families of victims involved in the El Paso Walmart shooting. Right-wing terrorist Patrick Crusius traveled to the store with a mission to kill members of the Latinx community. Residents of El Paso were hoping that stronger gun control laws would be put in place following the tragedy.
“Even knowing the political realities, I was hopeful,” said Democratic state Rep. Joe Moody, whose district is in El Paso, Fox News reports. “But now here we are, the first legislative session back since then, and it’s another date that’s going to be burned into my heat.”