Oklahoma House passes open-carry measure

Oklahomans with concealed handgun permits would be allowed to carry their weapons in the open if Senate Bill 1733 becomes law. The House also passed a bill that would allow hunters to use a suppressor on firearms when hunting on private property.
BY MICHAEL MCNUTT mmcnutt@opubco.com Published: April 27, 2012
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Oklahomans with concealed handgun permits would be allowed to carry their weapons in the open if a bill that easily passed the House of Representatives becomes law.

But members defeated an amendment Thursday that would have allowed for the open carrying of handguns anywhere without a permit.

Senate Bill 1733 would allow anyone possessing a license to carry a firearm under the Oklahoma Self Defense Act to carry the weapon either openly or concealed. It passed 85-3 and is headed for a conference committee.

It also would allow a property owner to openly carry a handgun on his or her land. No concealed carry permit would be required.

“This makes sure that it's very clear that someone can carry on their own property openly,” said Hickman, R-Fairview, the House author of the measure.

Rep. Joe Dorman, D-Rush Springs, said he is aware of rural landowners who have been questioned by local law enforcement officers about openly carrying handguns on their property.

Rep. Mike Reynolds filed an amendment to the measure that would have allowed a person to carry weapons openly for any purpose anywhere.

Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City, said his amendment would make state law conform to the 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which states the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

Rep. Steve Martin, author of a companion House bill, complained that the amendment changed the nature of SB 1733 and made a motion to dispose of Reynolds' amendment.

Members voted 61-16 to kill the amendment.

Other bills

The House passed several other gun-related bills. However, Rep. Marian Cooksey withdrew her bill after she couldn't defeat an amendment that would have allowed legislators to carry a handgun anywhere in the state after completing an approved firearms training course.

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