The full Texas House will take up a bill allowing for the open carry of handguns after a committee approved the legislation Thursday.
In a 7-2 vote, the House Committee on Homeland Security and Public Safety approved House Bill 910 by committee Chairman Larry Phillips, R-Sherman, which would let Texans with a concealed handgun license openly carry their weapons in public.
Last week, the House committee heard public testimony for and against the legislation.
Alice Tripp, a lobbyist for the Texas State Rifle Association, told the committee that Texans with a concealed carry license are far less likely to commit a crime than the average Texan.
“It’s time to let them take off their coats to pump their gas in August,” she said.
That hearing also included testimony on a bill that would allow for the concealed carry of handguns on college campuses. The Senate has given its approval to a campus carry bill from Sen. Brian Birdwell, R-Granbury.
A University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll last month found a large majority of Texans are opposed to open carry with or without a license. In the same poll, voters were split on allowing concealed handguns on state college and university campuses.