Last week, Texas’ most charming gentleman and Senate Republican Whip introduced the Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (S. 446).
In a nutshell, this legislation would permit Americans enjoying concealed carry privileges in their respective states to enjoy them in any other state that also has concealed carry laws.
If the legislation is passed into law, you’ll have to comply with those other states’ specific laws, so know before you plan on concealing anything while you’re on the road. But John Cornyn, along with 36 fellow Republican Senators, including Ted Cruz (Texas) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), are clearly passionate about his bill.
“This bill strengthens both the constitutional right of law-abiding citizens to protect themselves and the power of states to implement laws best-suited for the folks who live there,” Sen. Cornyn said in a news release on the legislation. “This legislation is an important affirmation of our Second Amendment rights and has been a top priority of law-abiding gun owners in Texas for a long time.”
Hold your celebratory (and dangerous, un-condoned) gunfire, though, because this legislation gets introduced nearly once a Congress and usually ends up going nowhere.
Currently, S. 446 has just been introduced to the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is chaired by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). Grassley didn’t take up the bill last year, but has continuously supported the legislation as a cosponsor, likely for the talking points – probably the majority of the the reason any legislation gets introduced in Congress in the first place, given the relatively small number of bills that actually do become law each session.
Furthermore, at 54 Republicans and 44 Democrats, the full Senate vote count isn’t ideal. If S. 446 somehow does miraculously make it past committee, the legislation would need the support of a few more than 36 Rs, maybe some Ds (yeah right), and let’s not even get started on how this legislation would go down in the House.
The timing couldn’t be better for Cornyn, however, as a wave of blood red Republican values has swept the country – President Donald Trump and purple state Senators from last election, like Dean Heller from Nevada and Heidi Heitkamp from North Dakota, are working to find a good balance of how to handle their tricky blend of conservative and liberal constituents.
Heller, an avid hunter and supporter of the Second Amendment, is already signed on as a cosponsor of the legislation, but Heitkamp, whose state is largely rural, still hasn’t signed on to support the bill.
West Virginia is pretty rural, too, which may point to why the state’s senior senator, Democrat Joe Manchin, ended up supporting the bill last Congress. Stranger things have happened (see: Donald Trump in office), despite polls and data and belief, than Dems supporting gun legislation.
In the meantime, remember that you have Second Amendment rights to bear arms and make the right efficacious by being able to buy guns and keep them in your home.