Legislators Not Optimistic about OC Bill in Texas

From the Texas State Rifle Association:

Last week, Mike Cox and I worked a TSRA booth at the Republican Convention in Fort Worth. During the first two days Republican House members and Senators dropped by to say hello.  All commented that the gun-carrying demonstrations are doing more harm than good and not to expect much from the 2015 legislative session.

The complaints were fueled by a demonstration outside the Fort Worth Convention Center plus a handful of delegates who wore black powder handguns into the convention.

As TSRA’s lobbyist, I count votes and I begin counting votes long before bills are even filed.  Wouldn’t you?   Every negative comment could be considered a “no vote” on any form of open carry.

There’s a rumor that Target is considering only banning open carry. That will include pistol OCers. Pistol OCers are going to be the biggest losers in all of this, because a concealed carrier’s gun is never going to be detected to prompt the request to leave the premises. And assuming that MDA has no luck getting corporations to post (which has force of law in a number of states), which I wouldn’t bet on if the dam starts breaking in a major way, which it appears it’s about to.

12 thoughts on “Legislators Not Optimistic about OC Bill in Texas”

  1. Wait. Are you suggesting that attention whores running around with rifles and scaring people in stores and restaurants has not been an effective strategy to win over legislators?


  2. Or it wasn’t going to move anyways and this is just the latest excuse?

    TX is slow to move on gun rights. Heck they didn’t have legal car carry until 2007! I find their gun laws to be “average” for states in America in 2014, with the exception of their castle doctrine which is pretty strong.

    That said, I don’t think OCT helped. But this wasn’t really a slam dunk vote before the shenanigans either.

    1. I agree. But part of why I decided this was blog worthy is to show how tenuous this stuff can be. You’ll have a lot of legislators in any body who don’t really want to go against you, but will use any excuse they can find to drag their feet or come up with reasons why they can’t vote for this or that which you want.

      The big problem with OCT is they provided a very public, very visible, and hard to argue against reason why they don’t want to take the leap to vote for legalizing pistol OC.

    2. Thinking about how to articulate this a bit more, the problem is that to win any election, you have to get to more than 50%, or at least a plurality if your state allows multi-way races. Politicians sort of gravitate to the mainstream. The big problem OCT created for a lobbyist trying to push the issue of OC in Texas is that they successfully managed to push the issue out of the mainstream to the fringe. When I say it’s “hard to argue with,” I mean if you’re asking a legislator to step out onto the fringe for you, you had better be able to bring an awful lot to the table, and the truth is we can only bring so much.

      A lot of our success in this issue involves first having to mainstream our issues. Concealed carry was once a fringe issue, and we mainstreamed it, and started to get it done. We’re currently trying to do the same thing with suppressors.

      OCT is an opposing force for mainstreaming. They are taking things and moving them back out to the fringes where we can no longer cover the checks those guys are writing.

      1. As an interesting comparison, I’d argue the left regularly argues for positions well outside the mainstream; on our issue, DiFi’s AWB, Hillary’s longing for the good old days of May Issue, or POTUS’ recent comments about Aussie style confiscation immediately come to mind. Those positions are well outside the norm for 2014 America except in certain very blue counties.

        It is nice having complete top cover from a compliant media. If we had local media superiority (like air superiority) in a given state or region I wonder if we could also push issues from the “fringe” (like NFA repeal) more effectively too, or if there is something else empowering the ability to push from the fringe so often.

        1. I’d argue those aren’t radical positions, and certainly weren’t a decade ago. AWBs are a mainstream position, if you look at the polling numbers on it. We’ve come a long way, but almost half of Americans will still tell pollsters they support the idea.

          The reason we can stop them is because politicians have learned that while our side of the AWB issue may have been a minority for a long time, and now is a slim majority, our side is highly motivated to punish politicians that cross us. By doing that, we took the AWB issue from the fringe to the mainstream. Now politicians don’t fear as much voting against them, and we’ve come up with a lot of talking points that expose the other side’s lies and exaggerations.

    3. Several folks who are instrumental pieces of the lobby down here have indicated that, up until about 3 months ago, they were getting very favorable feedback from state legislators. Over the past 3 months, with all the negative publicity around the issue, that feedback has taken a sudden left turn and support has dropped significantly for OC in 2015.

      It may not be proof that the OCT stuff in the last few months was the direct cause, but it at least strongly suggests that is the case.

  3. I’m waiting to see the comments from OCT members on how the obviously anti-2A and pro-facist NRA and their members sabotaged an assured victory for them.

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