While grassroots gun activists have had their hands full with establishment House Speaker Dennis Bonnen and his successful campaign to kill pro-gun legislation, gun control is surprisingly on the move in Texas.
Last week, HB 545 was voted out of the Criminal Jurisprudence Committee 7-2 with three Republicans voting alongside four Democrats. This bill was authored by anti-gun Homeland Security and Public Safety Chairman Poncho Nevarez, who played a significant role in killing Texas’s Constitutional Carry bill HB 357.
In an email, Lone Star Gun Rights called for its members to oppose this bill.
According to LSGR’s Senior Editor Derek Wills, HB 545 “would make it a crime for any Texan to lend, sell, or gift their firearm to anyone who has ever received “mental health” treatment by court order, even if they are ignorant of that fact.” The gun rights activists adds that courts in Texas “can order mental health treatment without any official diagnosis or even the commission of a crime.”
Wills argues that HB 545 “does not adequately utilize due process” and is effectively a “de facto red flag back door.”
Red flag laws have become the gun control legislation of choice for gun control activists since the Parkland shooting in 2018. Solid pro-gun states like Florida have passed this gun control legislation, while Republican legislators like Senator Lindsey Graham are currently working to draft red flag legislation in Congress.
Gun rights have not progressed much in the 2019 legislative session as the Texas political establishment has done everything in its power to roadblock Constitutional Carry legislation. It even has gone as far as to launch a dubious smear campaign against gun rights activist Chris McNutt for peacefully block walking in Bonnen’s district.
The legislative session is quickly coming to a close and it looks like gun rights activists will have another disappointing legislative session that does not see Constitutional Carry at least receive a roll call vote in the Texas state legislature.
White Pill: Montana House Moves Constitutional Carry Bill Forward
Constitutional Carry is one ray of hope for the Right.
On January 20, 2021, the Montana House of Representatives passed Constitutional Carry legislation, HB102.
Weingarten provided some context to the significance of this bill’s progress:
The bill is the accumulation of a decade and a half of struggle against Democrat Governors, who have repeatedly vetoed reform legislation passed with large majorities in the legislature. Numerous sections in the bill show the Montana legislature has learned the lesson from other states as they restore the right to keep and bear arms.
Montana’s Senate is made up of 31 Republicans and 19 Democrats and Governor Greg Gianforte is a Republican, so the passage of this bill augurs well. If passed, HB102 would make Montana the 17th Constitutional Carry state.
Montana is already a very gun-friendly state, and represents a low-hanging fruit for Second Amendment activists to tap into.
Constitutional Carry has been one of the most successful movements on the Right over the past twenty years. It’s easy to complain about the corrupt status quo, but there are still plenty of ways right-wingers can score victories. Constitutional Carry is one of them.
It would behoove the Right to analyze existing trends and build off movements that are already producing results. There’s no need to embark on quixotic campaigns that end up being total fools’ errands. Find what’s already working and run with it.
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