Home U.S No-permit gun carry legislation advances in Texas after years of stalled efforts

No-permit gun carry legislation advances in Texas after years of stalled efforts


A group of gun-control advocates including Rev. Bruce Nieli left, are escorted out of the House Chamber by a DPS Trooper when they began praying and singing during the debate of House Bill 1927 in the House Chamber at the Capitol on Thursday April 15, 2021.  The bill would allow people to carry a handgun without a permit.

AUSTIN, Texas – The Texas House on Thursday gave initial approval to a measure that would allow carrying a handgun in Texas without a permit, a multiyear effort that never before had gotten a vote in the lower chamber.

If approved, Texas would become by far the largest of roughly 20 states that already allow handgun owners to carry their weapons in public without a permit.

The timing of the GOP-led House passing the bill now — after years of stalled efforts — angered opponents whose chances for tightening gun laws after the 2019 El Paso Walmart shooting that killed 23 people are fading. Texas lawmakers did not meet in 2020, making this the first year gun-control bills have been filed since the attack.

The 84-56 vote was largely along party lines.

The debate dragged on for more than five hours, with Democrats attempting to tweak the bill through more than a dozen failed amendments and using parliamentary maneuvers sometimes used to kill a bill. At one point, gun control activists, overlooking lawmakers from the House gallery, were escorted out by law enforcement as they prayed and sang “Amazing Grace.”


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