A Texas Republican announced this week he intends to introduce a measure to recognize the Second Amendment as the only requirement needed to carry a handgun in the Lone Star State.
Texas requires License To Carry permits for both concealed and open carry and issued more than 307,000 LTCs last year alone. State Rep. Kyle Biedermann, R-Fredericksburg, weighed in on that stipulation Monday.
With today's political climate and the trend of defunding our police, it is more important than ever to support the right for all citizens to bear arms," said Biedermann on social media from the gun counter of his hardware store. "That is why I am officially announcing I will be filing Constitutional Carry in the 87th Legislative Session."
Biedermann said at least 15 states have constitutional carry and, "Texas should be the one leading on this issue," going on to say, "No one should have to pay a fee or get permission from the government before being able to do so legally."
The lawmaker's call was immediately supported by national gun rights groups.
“I agree with Rep. Biedermann: if you are not prohibited from possessing a handgun, you should not be prohibited from carrying it," said Rachel Malone, the Texas director for Gun Owners of America. "Texas still requires those who legally own a handgun to get a government permit to carry that handgun. This permit requirement does not stop criminals; it only disarms victims and makes it harder for certain classes of Texans to keep themselves and their families safe."
The planned legislation by Biedermann is not the first attempt to bring some form of permitless carry to Texans. Similar bills failed to gain traction in 2017 and 2015 while other, more watered-down, carry expansions did find their way to the governor's desk to include reducing LTC fees and a mechanism to carry temporarily during declared emergencies.
The 87th Texas Legislature is set to open Jan. 12, 2021.