OKLAHOMA CITY – An Oklahoma lawmaker wants to allow those with a valid handgun license to carry guns in the Capitol, something that is currently prohibited.
Senate Bill 38, authored by Sen. David Bullard, R-Durant, would allow individuals with a valid handgun license to proceed through a security checkpoint with a weapon after presenting the license.
“Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize a peace or security officer to remove or inspect any weapon or restrain any person carrying a properly concealed loaded or unloaded handgun without probable cause that a crime has been committed,” the measure states.
State law currently prohibits the carrying of weapons in the Capitol, with an exception.
“Law enforcement can bring them in, but they have to sign in and let security know they have it,” said Sarah Stewart, Department of Public Safety spokeswoman.
The agency, which provides security at the Capitol, had no comment on the measure.
Bullard said his measure was designed to increase the safety of those in the Capitol. He said it is a common-sense gun bill that would let people protect themselves.
The measure was requested by the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association, said Don Spencer, president.
Spencer, who called the state’s gun laws antiquated, said 18 states, including four that border Oklahoma, allow it.
Spencer said the measure would not allow for a person to openly carry a weapon into the capitol, adding that it would have to be concealed.
The bill has already been introduced more than once in the past and failed to secure approval.