The American Rifleman article The Texas Legislature passed a bill Tuesday that would prevent citizens from carrying firearms in the state unless they have an existing license or permit from the state.
The measure, which passed the House by a vote of 32-10, would not require gun owners to get a permit, and instead would prohibit them from carrying a gun into a state “that has a permit-free concealed carry law.”
It also requires anyone who is found to be carrying a weapon in Texas to submit a fingerprint and a copy of their concealed carry permit, as well as submit to an interview and background check.
The measure was passed on a party-line vote.
The bill was introduced by state Sen. Dan Patrick, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee.
It was introduced in response to the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., in December 2012.
The legislation, Patrick said in a statement, “allows a state to protect its citizens by prohibiting individuals from carrying weapons while on a state-approved hunting or fishing trip.”
It does not require an applicant to have a permit or purchase one.
The bill, Patrick wrote in a blog post, “is an important first step in ensuring that Texas is not a sanctuary state for criminals and law-breakers.”
Patrick added, “We should not be afraid to enforce the law.
Texas has always been a place where law enforcement is respected, and we should not have to fear to enforce our own laws to protect our citizens.”
In January, a similar bill was vetoed by then-Gov.
The NRA responded by calling the bill a “ludicrous” and “radical” attempt to ban gun ownership.
“This bill is a dangerous attempt to restrict Texans from exercising their Second Amendment rights,” said Shannon Watts, NRA-ILA’s chief lobbyist.
“This is a far cry from protecting our children and communities from domestic abusers, who are not even required to submit fingerprints to the state, but are able to obtain a gun and commit crimes.”
Patrick has called for a national “stand your ground” law that would protect gun owners in states that do not have a similar requirement.
The NRA has also pushed for gun bans in Arizona and Utah.