Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick was quoted by both the Austin American Statesman and the Dallas Morning News as saying that there is not sufficient legislative support to pass open-carry during the 2015 Texas Legislative Session. This is consistent with a Twitter post quoting Patrick as saying "I don’t think votes are there for #opencarry in #txlege, it’s not a high priority next to #txed, other issues.”
There can be little doubt that the months of negative publicity took its toll on the open-carry issue. However, hard work by NRA and TSRA lobbyists brought open-carry back from the junk pile and the political landscape in Austin was looking much better. Then, OCTC decided to make a big splash and invade a House Member’s office with demands, threats and a video recorder and once again the open-carry issue was cast in a negative light.
Thankfully, Texas has a Lieutenant Governor who pledged not to merely support open-carry, but to “fight for open carry.” In prior legislative sessions, a small number of Senators could kill a bill with the so-called “Two Thirds Rule” so even a powerful Lieutenant Governor could well be unable to bring a bill to the floor of the Senate. However, Dan Patrick campaigned on a promise to change that rule such that only 19 votes are needed to bring a bill up for debate and vote in the Senate. With 21 Republicans in the Senate and a new “Three Fifths Rule,” Dan Patrick is in a position to make good on yet another campaign promise, i.e. fighting for open-carry.
Dan Patrick was my Senator and I have every reason to believe he is a man of his word. If he promised to “fight for open-carry,” then I am confident that he will and not merely because millions of Texas gun-owners are watching. He will do it because he said he would. Thank you Gov. Patrick!