Wendy Davis' inconic running shoes (courtesy redbubble.com)

Rick Perry is a gun guy. Famously, the Texas Governor shot and killed a coyote with a Ruger LCP during an early morning jog. More recently, Perry has thrown his support behind the Texas International Firearms Festival, a two-day gun show at Liberty Hill on November 8 and 9. Oh, and he keeps an FN FiveseveN as his bedside gun. But Perry’s not been able to move the needle on open carry in the Lone Star State. His assumptive replacement, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, has declared his intention to make it so. Yes, well, he would say that, wouldn’t he? But what about his Democratic rival Wendy “Where Did You Get Those Shoes” Davis? Here’s a shocker . . .

AUSTIN, Texas –  The Wild West tradition of openly carrying your six-shooter on the street has long been banned by many cities in Texas. But the state’s next governor could change that.

Rising Democratic star and gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis has joined her top Republican rival in supporting a proposed “open carry” law. It would allow people with concealed handgun licenses to wear a pistol on their hip, in full view, while in public.

Is it me or is foxnews.com reporting this important gun rights milestone with sarcastic incredulity? Never mind. Davis’ decision to back open carry won’t get her elected governor, but it will push Abbott to move from rhetoric to action. Before this announcement, Austin insiders told me open carry wasn’t in the cards. Now it is. Even better, Davis’ pro-gun stance has given her party and, of course, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America (a wholly owned subsidiary of Mayors Against Illegal Guns) conniptions.

But her party and influential Democratic colleagues, including a fellow state senator running for lieutenant governor, disagree.

“There is little or no public safety justification for open carry,” said Emmanuel Garcia, spokesman for the Texas Democratic Party.

Kellye Burke, who leads the Texas Chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, also opposes Davis’ position. She said the open carry of firearms, whether rifles or pistols, “is meant to be a sign of intimidation. It’s not about protection.”

“I don’t think people are aware of it. They just haven’t seen it yet. People are completely shocked how strange and lawless it looks to have that kind of firepower in our daily life,” Burke said.

How strange it looks? That’s her best shot? Well Burke does represent, what, twenty Texans? I mean, any Texan who’s afraid of guns . . . but I digress. What does the Fox say? Republicans pounced on Davis as a flip-flopper.

Still, gun rights advocates were skeptical. Texas State Rifle Association spokeswoman Alice Tripp noted Davis’ previous calls for more restrictions on gun show sales and past votes against allowing concealed license holders to carry their guns in classrooms and buildings on college campuses.

“Wendy Davis has a very bad record as far as gun owners go,” Tripp said, calling Davis an “opportunist.”

Abbott spokesman Adviel Huerta expressed a similar sentiment.

“Sen. Wendy Davis’ new pro-gun stance may help improve her low grade with the NRA, but it won’t help it won’t help her (be) a straight shooter when it comes to the facts of her anti-gun record,” Huerta said, noting that Abbott supported an open-carry bill in the 2013 legislative session.

But veteran Democratic consultant Harold Cook said Abbott supporters have already tried to portray Davis as anti-gun.

“If the issue isn’t important to you, then it would be smart to take it off the table by saying, `Me, too; now let’s go back to talking about education and how we fund road building and the stuff the mainstream of Texas is really concerned with,”‘ he said.

I’ve got an idea! Why doesn’t the entire Democratic party take gun rights off the table by repealing civilian disarmament laws throughout the nation and putting open carry on the party platform in 2016? Just a thought . . .

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122 Responses to Texas Sprinting Towards Open Carry

    • No. There’s a problem with what she said: she wants OC so long as you have a permit. Among other problems that gives cops a right to stop and harass us…and it doesn’t solve the “rights shouldn’t cost hundreds of dollars” problem.

    • +1

      Davis is a complete fake and will do or say whatever it takes to win. Throw the “gun nuts” a bone, that’s all she’s doing. Once she gets elected, forget it. She’ll lawyer her way out of that statement.

      • I agree. She can’t be trusted. But if people move quickly to get an open carry vote through it would certainly help us out. She would have to either stop her lying or show her support for it. It’s a good short term opportunity that we may want to take advantage of before her true colors reamerge.

    • Yep. Just another sweet politically expedient promise which she has no intent of keeping but hopes will get her votes.

      I can’t wait to cast my ballot against her.

    • “She’s a liar.”
      Of course she is, as are most politicians from both parties. But this is a good thing. Now we need to pin down both candidates as to what legislation they will propose/promote once in office. Get them in a “who’s more pro-2A” pissin’ match.

  1. I think the “six-shooter” language is just the result of Fox being lazy and republishing an AP report.

    As for the substance, yeah…it’s nice to be moving in the right direction around here. OC was offered up in the 2013 bi-annual legislative session, but the committee chairs, the speaker, and, really, Perry, didn’t put any meaningful weight behind it. Maybe now it’s got the momentum for 2015.

  2. And here is Shannon Watts’s response.

    http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1725065

    “Earlier today, Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis announced that she supports new laws that would allow Texans to openly carry loaded firearms in public. Davis’s position is disappointing and dangerous given that there is no federal or state requirement for background checks on private gun sales in Texas, making it easy for felons and other dangerous criminals, including domestic abusers, to get guns.

    In November, while several members of Moms Demand Action gathered in a restaurant outside Dallas, nearly 40 open carry activists stood in the parking lot with long guns – including semi-automatic rifles – waiting for our mom members to leave the restaurant. This episode of intimidation illustrates clearly that with rights come responsibilities, and passing background checks on all gun sales should be the priority before passing laws that allow open carry.

    Davis has voiced her support for background checks – this past September she said, ‘If I were governor and a bill came to my desk that provided for background checks at gun shows, I would sign that.’ And just this week the commissioners of Travis County, Texas, stood up for background checks at gun shows in their county.

    As a mother, as an elected official, and as a champion of survivors of domestic abuse victims, we expect State Senator Davis to do the same and close the background check loophole to protect Texas families.”

  3. I was always a little surprised that Texas was a non-open carry state, and hopefully they do get around to changing that fact.

    • I agree, I researched gun laws before moving to TX, and was like “wait… what?”. Huge surprise. I came from NC, where I received nothing but compliments from people on my guns and holsters, and simply for open carrying. Huge change, and I can’t wait for TX to allow open carry of pistols!

  4. I’m sure most residents won’t buy davis’s “how to serve Texans”, they know a cookbook when they see it. I’m glad that ” moms demand illegal action” has their knickers in a twist, Randy

  5. It’s pure political posturing, but she may be grasping at the wrong straws. National supporters can ignore you telling your wheelchair bound opponent to “walk a mile in my shoes”, but supporting gun rights, even fake support, doesn’t fly well with them. You’re only allow to mention gun rights when you say “I support the 2A, but…”.

    Although, this could be a long game. Open carry with permit is no more consitutional than concealed carry with permit. You’re still applying for the priviledge of excercising a right. And they can always make the permits harder and harder to get.

    • …And they can always make the permits harder and harder to get.

      And that’s the name of Wendy’s tune. Complete with faux MDAAIG outrage. Not everybody is blind, and this isn’t the first rodeo.

  6. What is funny, is a LIBERAL LEFT state like Minnesota has better gun laws than Texas. Open carry , bars, churches, etc. with ccw.

    • I think I have a different definition of “better gun laws” than you. You can’t *buy* a handgun or MSR in MN without a permit or a waiting period/state BG check, correct? Also, you can carry in TX in churches unless the required no-carry signage is posted, and the required signage is burdensome enough that relatively few places go to the trouble of posting it. Bars are still a problem in TX, but only if they are really bars and derive at least 51% of revenues from liquor sales. Restaurants with bars generally are fine, though.

      Besides all that, TX is, for the time being at least, moving in the right direction for RKBA. I would not put money on MN to do the same.

      • Well stated. Anyone can cherry pick what constitutes “better gun laws”. Some people get irritated by prideful Texans. Hell at this point they just get angry at the mention of Texas. Is making an absurd claim about poor Texas gun rights every chance someone gets somehow less annoying than a prideful Texan? The answer is no.

        • THANK YOU.
          I live in Dallas. I get so damn tired of TTAG flaming Texas needlessly.
          At least in texas, a DGU is actually viewed as a DGU instead of a “chance to take this yuppie’s rights away.”

        • Dang! If you want sh1tty laws come to NY, NJ, MA, MD, or DC. Everywhere is fscking Paradise in comparison.

          P!ss ants stomped: 1

      • Actually you CANNOT carry in a church in TX regardless. PC 46.035 Subsection B clearly states

        (b) A license holder commits an offense if the license holder
        intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries a handgun under the
        authority of Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, regardless of
        whether the handgun is concealed, on or about the license holder’s
        person:
        (6) on the premises of a church, synagogue, or other established
        place of religious worship.

        Here’s the link to the current CCW laws in TX straight from the TX DPS website: http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/InternetForms/Forms/CHL-16.pdf

        So you don’t have to look it up, Subchapter H, Chapter 411 defines persons eligible for CCW, what weapons are allowed for CCW, and how the state is supposed to provide CCW licences. Where and when you may carry is defined in section 46. Don’t be confused by section 46.03 which lists places you may not carry a gun period. Section 46.035 lists unlawful places to carry as a licence holder.

        Basically, I’m rethinking this whole move to TX thing after getting out of the military. FL was way better.

        • If you scroll on down to the bottom of the abovementioned section you will discover the double amendment releases the actor from prosecution if he is not informed via 30.06
          Know the codes before you post.

    • A great many conservatives don’t trust their fellow Americana with guns and are not gun owners either. In the 2008 exit survey of national voters 30% of democrats were gun owners, which probably doesn’t seem too surprising. But still, Republicans that owned guns were only about 50%. Combined that means only 42% of the population were gun owners. So it’s not so hard to see how even a state like Texas might have crappy gun laws.

        • Given that today the majority of “noparty” are fedup Republicans you can assume the majority believe in the Constitution, including the 2nd.

      • Yeah, Texas isn’t growing at a staggering rate from people moving here from other states or anything. Nope, sealed border here. Nobody else gets in or out in this place while we all just stew in our gun less society. Or do the people from out of state not participate in those polls?

        Amazing how much legal shooting and carrying I manage, how much the law supports my ability to be prepared to use a firearm to defend my family and home here with such poor gun laws. What is that? Another state has something that is better concerning gun laws? Oh NOOOOoooooo poor me.

  7. Hmm, can’t wait. In the mean time, I think if there is an open carry demonstration in Houston, I want to carry a nice .22 cricket in bright pink. Mostly just to f@#k with the folks who say I’m trying to intimidate people.

  8. Davis will say anything to get what she wants. Remember, this is a woman who has been running on her sob story as a “single teen mom who put herself through law school”, despite the fact that she married a sugar daddy to finance her education, divorced him as soon as school was paid off, and did not seek custody of her children when she divorced their father.

  9. “I’ve got an idea! Why doesn’t the entire Democratic party take gun rights off the table by repealing civilian disarmament laws throughout the nation and putting open carry on the party platform in 2016?”

    I wish they would. As a gun owning liberal myself, though not a Democrat, the anti-gun fear that left leaning folks have has always irritated me.

  10. Talk is cheap; on a previous post I pointed out that Davis has already displayed her anti-gun political stripes, and there is nothing to keep her from changing her mind on any pro-gun position once the wind direction changes sufficiently.

  11. She also recently said she would support a law that allows people to store their firearms in their vehicles on company property….

    We already have that.

  12. People are missing the point about Wendy Davis’ stance — it does not really matter if she is telling the truth, because she is not going to win anyway. What it does do is give a huge rhetorical bat for open carry-friendly lawmakers to beat antis with… Wonder how many times her name is mentioned during committee hearings taking up the inevitable open carry bill…

    • This is a really good point. You know, everyone points out how Texas isn’t really gun friendly but we find ourselves in the enviable position of having the democrat candidate for governor push for open carry. It’s practically guaranteed now because of this, and in a big (read:visible) way.

    • ^this. Plus, it makes open carry “mainstream” because a Dem supports it. Anyone else (Cuomo, O’Malley) is an extremist out of step with the mainstream.

    • I think it would be fitting to call it the “Wendy Davis Open Carry Bill” to show our appreciation when it’s introduced.

    • How’s the saying go?

      “How can you tell he’s lying?”

      “He’s a politician and his mouth is moving.”

  13. “There is little or no public safety justification for open carry,”

    YOU DON’T FREAKING NEED ANY!!!

    Sorry, I get tired of the public safety justification. The gummint needs justification in order to pass a law that restricts an existing freedom.

    For one, the Second Amendment places the right to keep and bear arms on a select list of freedoms that the government CANNOT TOUCH, regardless of justification.

    Second, because the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed and we’re talking about STOPPING the infringement, what more freaking justification can you possibly need?

    “We’d be removing restrictions on a God given right protected by the constitution, but because we can’t figure out that it would make people safer we’re not going to do it.”

    Bullshit.

    /rant

    • Possibly a better approach would be to cite all the states that have open carry and the utter lack of an uptick in shootings. So you have a net neutral situation, why not increase liberty. offers folks with lower income or escaped battered spouses able to defend against violent threat as a bonus. Makes the anti-arguments kinda ring hollow

  14. I find it interesting that the fact that Davis changed her mind (flip flopped) is used against her.

    Isn’t changing people’s minds about guns what we want?

    • Yes, but when a politician like her “changes her mind” during an election on a proposed law all her comrades oppose, one must question her sincerity.

    • Davis’ publicly stated pro open carry position after having demonstrated positions as a gun control Democrat certainly can’t hurt.

      As Unknown Prosecutor stated above, it makes a great club.

      Watts can just roll over and take it!

    • Yeah, but then my question to you would be, do you really think she is convinced, or do you think she just knows what to say to get elected? She would by far not be the first politician to conveniently forget a campaign promise.

  15. I hope it’s a good sign that the GOP candidates for Lt Gov are now talking open carry. Lt Gov runs the senate, and one of these four guys WILL be the next Lt Gov. There are three GOP office holders challenging the incumbent, so they’re all trying to outdo each other on the rhetoric. I hope it’s not just talk. We really should have gotten campus carry passed by now. If Perry had put it in the special session, it would have gotten past the Dems’ filibuster, but he declined to do that.

  16. The best part about this is even if shes a giant liar, it makes not supporting open carry look stupid. It completely pushes stricter gun laws off the political feasibility spectrum. If the Dem candidate supports it, this has to happen or Repubs are going to be branded as the opportunistic liars they’ve looked like.

  17. … “is meant to be a sign of intimidation. It’s not about protection.”

    Nah, it a sign of comfort. Because iwb in the summer is just plain uncomfortable…

    • Of course they think open is done to intimidate. Think about who you usually see openly carrying handguns … Cops, the privileged few who can for some mysterious reason be completely trusted with these magic death sticks that compel the us mere mortals to kill the children.

  18. Lair lair pants on fire.. whew ok got that out of my system.
    Of course she is cut from the same cloth. If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor?

    Anyone… Anyone….

    Beuller… lol

  19. I’m curious why ‘open carry’ is controversial in your country. Here in Canada, the few handgun carry licences that are issued (for cash in transit guards, people like geologists and trappers in the back country) are generally only issued for OPEN carry. Concealed licenses are very rare. People don’t seem to be bothered with seeing cash in transit and bank guards with open-holstered guns, so why is this an issue for others?

    • It is a little convoluted, because those who wish to disarm us have to lie to get anywhere with their proposals. Originally, bans on concealed carry were justified because “only criminals would need to conceal their weapons”. Then, gradually, people carrying weapons only were slowly made to be “socially unacceptable”. Pushback came as more and more states reformed the concealed carry laws to make obtaining a concealed carry permit relatively easy. Most states never had laws against open carry, Texas being one of the few exceptions because of its constitution being rewritten during reconstruction after the civil war. As the carrying of weapons has resurged as part of the effort to restore American limits on government power, people have started carrying openly to show that they have rights the government cannot take away.

      The push against open carry is a desperate attempt by the pro-government groups to de-legitimize the idea of limits on government.

      • The push against open carry is a reflection of a culture where school teachers and soccer moms are terrified by the sight of guns, whether real, toys, or merely pictures, and call the police every time they see a MWG!, whether that person is acting suspiciously or dangerously or not. Openly carried guns simply dropped out of fashion in the predominantly urban areas in the early 20th century, as cities and towns became safer, and the fashion in suits made concealed carry preferred for those who chose to do so–and people got used to NOT seeing them except on men in uniform (police officers, security guards, soldiers). Consequently, we have a complete reversal from a preference for open carry to a preference for concealed carry. While an honest man in the 19th century would bear his arms openly, and only a thief or cutthroat would carry concealed, now what we have is an “out of sight, out of mind” mentality. Unfortunately, this cultural change clashes with the ancient case law that approved concealed carry restrictions over a hundred years ago, such that the right to carry a firearm is denied. Until the Supreme Court weighs in and holds that there is indeed a right to bear arms for self defense outside the home, this conflict will continue. many pundits, including myself, believe that a state, if it can lawfully restrict, must allow some form of carry; and if it does not want people openly carrying firearms, well then it must allow concealed carry, with or without a permit.

    • Guards tend to be uniformed. Open carry, where it exists in the US, is for everyone. Seeing an ordinary person with a gun strapped to his or her hip unnerves some people.

      • > Seeing an ordinary person with a gun strapped to his or her hip unnerves some people.

        Many people get unnerved by people CCing, too. They don’t want the average citizen to carry. You going to give in to them?

        • If only it were just “them” one had to deal with. We have quite a few detractors of open carry in our own ranks, even for sidearms.

      • Yes–in Canada (Provincial regulations), armed guards are required to wear uniforms. People with wilderness Authorizations To Carry are not.

        Many interesting points.

        • There may be different rules for hunters in some parts of the US too, but both hunters and wilderness area workers carry away from populated areas. It’s really quite another thing, to give you one recent example, to walk into a supermarket in a city of half a million people and see a young couple open carrying, with the gentleman’s gun in a hip holster and the lady’s conspicuously protruding from what may have been an IWB holster of some kind at the small of her back.

          I wish this were a more common sight where I live, but since AZ removed the permit requirement even for concealed carry in 2010 (afaik, there has never been a permit requirement for open carry in the State), it is possible that some people who might have carried openly in the past now choose to carry concealed. There’s really no way to know.

    • My two cents:

      Cunningly contrived and engineered hysteria by a handful of radical Liberals; orchestrated, packaged and magnified by the media; for the pacification of the slow witted and feeble minded.

  20. //“There is little or no public safety justification for open carry,” said Emmanuel Garcia, spokesman for the Texas Democratic Party.//

    Exercising a fundamental right requires no justification, limiting it in any way is what has to be justified. There must be Democrats who understand that, this gentleman doesn’t seem to be one of them.

    • Bingo. the citizens do not have to justify the exercise of their individual rights, the government must justify any attempt to restrict the exercise of those rights. This guy proposes no less than Big brother government; and if he is any reflection of his party, we see from this fundamental confusion where it has gone astray.

  21. “Earlier today, Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis announced that she supports new laws that would allow Texans to openly carry loaded firearms in public. Davis’s position is disappointing and dangerous given that there is no federal or state requirement for background checks on private gun sales in Texas, making it easy for felons and other dangerous criminals, including domestic abusers, to get guns.

    Wait. WHAT??

    Sorry, Shannon, you lost me there. WTF does open carry have to do with Universal Background Checks?
    Remember that phrase you hated in math class? “Show me your work;
    I want to see how your got from “A” to “B”

    • And since when is there “no federal requirement” for background checks? Buy from an FFL, and yes there will be a background check. Why does she so consistently misrepresent this patent requirement of the law?

      And does Ms. Watts really think that persons with felony convictions who commit a felony simply by possessing a firearm will go prancing around town with guns strapped to their hips? I mean, that’s like asking to go to jail. Ain’t gonna happen.

      • She’s all het up about and not going to miss a chance to bitch about private sales not having a background check.

        You know, what free citizens in a truly free country can do with their lawfully-owned property.

      • I see it this way: We, the people, do not have to go through the BC when buing firearms. The law merely says that FFLs can’t sell them without running one. We as private persons can buy and sell our property inside the state as long as we don’t live in safety heaven states like Illinois as I do.

  22. I don’t believe her for one second, “opportunist” is right.

    What I see though is her alienating her own party while gaining zero fence-straddlers in the mean time. Win win for Abbot.

  23. Yea, I open carry. Intimidating the teenager behind the counter at McDonald’s is simply the most awesomest fun one can have without going to jail.

  24. Let me restate the obvious, like everyone else has, for the umpteenth time: she’s full of crap and has no intention whatsoever of doing anything but lie and deny her way into office where she’ll promptly start to snatch guns. Now that that’s out of the way, here’s what she should have done.

    She should have said that no, she isn’t in favor of open carry, and then cited some of the various plausible, if insufficient, arguments against it:

    Supposedly places a “shoot me first” sign on carriers.
    Announces to the world that you own firearms and possibly other valuables at home.
    Reveals to your extended family and in-laws your ownership status, prompting senseless arguments with people you can’t readily avoid.
    Could alarm your neighbors into forbidding their kids from playing with your kids in your gun-laden home.
    Could make trouble for yourself at work if you’re seen armed about town and people wonder whether you’re carrying concealed while at work in violation of policy.
    You could have the gun snatched from your non-retention holster.
    You could have the gun not presented quickly enough from your retention holster.
    You could negligently discharge because your retention holster’s release button is positioned too low and is aligned with the trigger as you draw.
    Could lead to racial profiling as police use your open carrying as a pretext to search and demand I.D.
    Diminishes the overall deterrent value of concealed carry as criminals start to assume that all that they see is all that there is.

    After coming off astonishingly well informed for a supposedly closed minded, ignorant gun grabber, she could have then gone on to say that even though she’s against it for these reasons and more, she’s learned one thing in her many years of professional career and public service. It’s that the key to wisdom is never to stop listening and learning. So she’d be willing to support a full legislative debate on the open carry topic and if the arguments presented held sway, then she would dutifully sign the bill and make it the law of the land.

    Of course, it would all just have been masterful political show(wo)manship from a lying, conniving gun grabbing statist, but it would have appeared so thoughtful and prudent that the opposition would be disarmed and unable to use any element of firearms politics against her. Instead, she tried to sell us this ham-handed, incredible “Me, too!” b.s. which absolutely nobody is buying. What an amateur.

  25. Wendy Davis’ own life story reminds me of this very old joke, that some attribute to Churchill:

    http://barrypopik.com/index.php/new_york_city/entry/what_kind_of_woman_do_you_take_me_for_madam_weve_already_established_that_c/

    Now that I think on it, Ms Davis and Ms Watts aren’t so unlike, are they?

    My hope is there arent enough low info voters and koolaid drinking prog-libtards and feminazis in TX to even make this a close race, and Mr Abbott wins.

    Ms Davis is the best example of the sociopathy of the female type that seems to largely live on the never ending naivete of well meaning sugar daddy “white knights”, until its time to go on into politics,

    at the direction of more sophisticated and truly amoral Svengali’s like Ayers, Soros, Blum (DiFis husband who’s construction company seems to mysteriously win every big dollar sole source govt project in CA), Bloomberg, you get my drift-

    Who teach these Creatures – the only accurate description I can imagine,

    (for Davis long ago lost the benefit of the highest honor of being called, “Mother”, after abandoning her kids)

    how to throw ANYONE under the bus, with impunity, when they are done with them.

    Say, who is that high profile female running for President in 2016?
    “What does it matter, anyway?”

  26. What gives any congressman of the US or any state of the US to go make laws to go against the right to own and bear arms (bear meaning to carry) in any state. I can understand to remove that right from criminals, dwi violators, those with mental disorders, drug abusers or any reason why they should not be in possession of any weapon but— Making it illegal for law abiding citizens to not be able to open carry any firearm is according to the Constitution is totally illegal. That makes any politician that tries to change that right a criminal because they are stealing rights that the Constitution has given us. An issue as important as this should be put to a vote by the people of the US not by our representatives which the majority of the time the go against what the people of there own district wants. The same goes for Obama care and gay marriages, let the people vote by majority if that’s what we want not let some dumb idiots in power impose it on us.

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