Friday, May 21, 2021

TX Conference Committee for Constitutional Carry Assignments made, Leadership Confident

Texas Capitol image from wikipedia, cropped and scaled by Dean Weingarten

Texas Second Amendment supporters have been working hard to pass Constitutional Carry in Texas for several years. The leadership of the Texas Republicans has been hostile to the idea, even though Constitutional Carry was one of the top planks in the Texas Republican Party platform. Changes in leadership, by resignation or removal in primaries, made passage plausible in 2021. 

A new Republican Party Chairman, Allen West, pushed hard for passage. Speaker of the House, Dade Phelan supported it. It passed the house, 84 to 56 in mid April. Lt. Governor Dan Patrick (who controls the Texas Senate) and Governor Greg Abbot got on board. It passed the Senate, with all 18 Republicans voting for it. All 18 votes were needed to bring the bill to the floor, as required by the Texas Senate filibuster rule. 

The price of some of those votes were in eight amendments, several of which were problematic.

On Wednesday, 12 May, the House rejected the amendments attached to HB1927 in the Senate, and moved to send the bill to a conference committee to work out the differences.

Speaker of the House, Dade Phelan, immediately appointed five members of the House, including Schaefer the sponsor of the bill, and Burrows, Canales, Guillen and White.  

On 13 May, in the afternoon, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick appointed five members of the Senate to the Conference Committee. They are Schertner, Birdwell, Campbell, Creighton, and Hughes. 

The members of the Conference Committee all voted for HB1927. This shows both Speaker of the House Dade Phelan and Lt. Governer Dan Patrick, who runs the Texas Senate, are serious about passing HB1927 and getting it to Governor Greg Abbott, to sign into law, this session.

It may be that only 16 votes will be needed in the Senate to pass a bill from the Conference Committee. Perhaps a reader who is intimately familiar with Texas legislative procedure can enlighten us on that point.

There is not much time left in the Texas legislative session this year. The Session ends at midnight on 31 May. There are legislative procedures and schedules to follow.  

Both Speaker Phelan and Lt. Govenor Dan Patrick expressed confidence they could get the bill to Governor Abbott to sign. Dade Phelan Tweeted:

Texas is on the cusp of a watershed victory for #2A. @DanPatrickTX and I are energized and optimistic that the House and Senate we will get HB 1927 done and to @GregAbbott_TX very soon. #txlege
If HB1927 becomes law, Texas will be the 21st member of the modern Constitutional Carry club. 
Louisiana recently passed a Constitutional Carry bill with large majorities, but Governor Bel Edwards has threatened to veto it.
The States which currently have Constitutional Carry (the Tennessee law goes into effect on 1 July) are: 

Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi  Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
If Texas restores Constitutional Carry, which was taken from Texas in 1869, under Reconstruction, five states will have joined the Constitutional Carry club in 2021. 
The lack of any measurable increase in violent crime in the States which have had long experience with Constitutional Carry has been a powerful argument for passage of Constitutional Carry bills

The theory that people carrying weapons in their ordinary activities fosters crime has been discredited. 

Much of the progress in 2021can be attributed to fear of the Biden regime, which has been openly hostile to the right to keep and bear arms. State legislatures are reacting to protect the rights of their citizens.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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