Lawmakers in Texas, Arkansas, move to permit concealed carry at public universities
Republican state legislators in Arkansas and Texas responded to President Obama’s new gun proposals on Thursday, introducing bills that would allow the concealed carry of firearms at public universities.
The bill introduced in Texas was co-authored by 14 Republicans. Prominent authors include Sens. Dan Patrick (Houston) and Jane Nelson (Flower Mound).
The bill would allow citizens with concealed carry permits to carry their registered concealed handguns on to college campuses and would prevent state universities from passing measures that would restrict that right.
A similar bill brought before the state legislature failed to garner sufficient support.
The University of Texas (UT) President William Powers Jr., opposed the last bill arguing weapons would detract from the university’s academic climate.
A UT spokesman Gary Susswein told college newspaper, the Daily Texan on Tuesday that Powers would continue to oppose any legislation that permitted concealed carry on campus.
“He is not in favor of legislation that allows guns on campus,” Susswein said. “He does not believe it would enhance safety on campus.”
Arkansas’s bill, being proposed by Rep. Danny Altes (R-Fort Smith) would also allow university faculty and staff to carry concealed firearms on campus. A similar bill also proposed by Arkansas Republicans would allow residents with concealed carry permits to carry handguns into churches.
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