Encouraged by last session’s passage of both open-carry and campus-carry legislation, supporters of two constitutional carry measures showed up in droves at a Capitol hearing on Tuesday. According to the Star-Telegram, more than 320 Texans signed up to speak before the House Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee regarding HB375 and HB1911.
Supporters say the $140 carry permit—among the most expensive in the nation—caused low-income individuals to be unfairly priced out of their rights. HB375’s sponsor, Rep. Jonathan Strickland, explained the fee was actually unfair for everyone: “I don’t think the government has the right to sell us back our rights,” he said.
As Rep. James White noted, Texas already has constitutional carry for rifles and long arms. “Whether licensed or unlicensed—or a possessor of a pistol, revolver or rifle—the eligibility requirements should be the same,” he said.
So far, 17 lawmakers are co-sponsoring HB375 and 22 are co-sponsoring HB1911, indicating their willingness to side with a majority of their constituents. “Texans are sick of big government. They’re sick of wondering if their rights are always disappearing,” Strickland said.