On Monday, the Texas Senate approved a bill that, if passed, would allow those with concealed handgun licenses to carry weapons in public college buildings and classrooms.
Supporters of the controversial legislation, which now heads to the state’s House for a vote, say carrying guns on campus is a self-defense measure, one that could allow students to fight back in school shootings like those at Virginia Tech in 2007 and Northern Illinois University in 2008. Those against the bill, including administrators at the University of Texas system, worry the law could lead to more campus crime and suicides.
According to the AP, guns on campus bills have been rejected in at least 23 states since 2007. Last month, a similar bill passed in Arizona, but Gov. Jan Brewer used her veto power to stop it from becoming a law. She said while she generally supports allowing people to carry their weapons in a wider range of places, the legislation was poorly written.
But gun-control advocates aren’t likely to see a similar result with Texas Gov. Rick Perry if the bill clears the House and heads to his desk for a signature. The gun-loving governor, who has voiced support for the bill, once famously shot a coyote with a laser-sighted pistol while he was jogging with his dog.