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OKLAHOMA CITY — An Oklahoma legislator says anyone with a license to carry a handgun should be allowed to take the weapon into "the people's Capitol."

"It's our God-given right and our constitutional right," said Rep. John Bennett, R-Sallisaw, who has filed legislation to allow weapons to be taken into the Capitol building.

Bennett's bill has been assigned to the House Public Safety Committee but has not been set for a hearing.

A similar bill was approved in the House Judiciary Committee last year, but the proposal did not reach the full House.

Security is tight at the Capitol, with visitors having to go through metal detectors and send bags, cellphones and, at times, even pocket change through an x-ray machine.

"I'm a believer in the Second Amendment, but there are several people that have reservations about it," including the sergeants at arms who guard the House and Senate chambers, said Rep. Mike Christian, R-Oklahoma City, chairman of the public safety panel.

Christian said he wants to hear from the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, which provides security for both the Capitol and the governor.

Highway Patrol spokesman Capt. Paul Timmons declined comment and Alex Weintz, a spokesman for Gov. Mary Fallin, said the office hadn't reviewed the proposal.

Those who are armed would be allowed through security checkpoints after presenting a valid handgun license. Capitol guards would not be allowed "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," according to the measure.

Christian said he planned to discuss the bill with Bennett.


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Archived Comments

  • NoCrossNoCrown
    February 16, 2015 at 12:39 p.m.

    So WHEN the shoot-out does happen,
    how will the capitol police know the good shooters from the bad shooters??
    Oklahoma- Trying to be as Texass as they can.....

  • nwar
    February 16, 2015 at 12:50 p.m.

    Don't you have to ask yourself why someone would want to bring a gun into the Capitol building? And wouldn't their reasons generally prove that they are not "good guys with guns?" Are they putting stupid pills in the drinking water in OK?

  • Hogdude
    February 16, 2015 at 2:08 p.m.

    I'm NRA, firearms instructor, permit holder and 2nd Amendment advocate, but Rep. Bennett goes too far. There are some places guns shouldn't be allowed and a legislative chamber is one of them. In a democracy, we sometimes have trouble controlling our speech and actions. Tempers flare and limits are diminished. The threat of being shot, or threatened, is not the way legislatures anywhere should operate anywhere in the world. Bad idea.

  • mitchstoner
    February 16, 2015 at 2:09 p.m.

    Of course no person with bad intentions would ever ever try to take a firearm into the Capitol. Just like bad guys never go into schools or churches or workplaces with guns.

    So it is obvious to every clear-thinking progressive-minded person that there's no need, ever, for a good law-abiding person to have a gun. Besides, the police are always available to protect us if in some rare instance, a bad guy should come along with one of the jillions of easily obtainable full auto assault machine guns with outrageously gigantic clips that no legitimate sportsman has any reason to possess.

  • mitchstoner
    February 16, 2015 at 2:11 p.m.

    For those lacking an operative sarcasm detector, that's what the above is.

  • RestoftheStory
    February 16, 2015 at 2:29 p.m.

    1) Handguns were not needed in OK City because Timothy McVeigh used a truck bomb filled with fertilize to kill far more people than he could with a handgun. Will they ban fertilize?
    2) Handguns were not needed on September 11. To kill more people, Muslims flew passenger jets into the World Trade Center. Will they ban passenger jets? Will they ban Muslims?
    3) Handguns were not needed at the Boston Marathon Massacre. To kill more people, the Muslims used pipe bombs. Will they ban pipes? Will they ban Muslims?
    4) Water kills far more people than handguns. Water can be lethal when it reaches its boiling point. Water can become lethal in its frozen state if you stay in a freezer with it. Large quantities of water can cause a person to drown. Large amounts on a wet and slippery highway can cause automobile accidents and deaths on our roadways. Water can also be found in cancer cells. Do you ban water?

  • Morebeer
    February 16, 2015 at 3:37 p.m.

    Well, the same legislators who think guns are good on campuses, parks and in public generally, are hypocrites to say guns don't make them safer in the Legislature. No law should be passed that doesn't apply to the legislator, too.

  • FreeSpiritMan
    February 16, 2015 at 4:15 p.m.

    He says "God-given right", duh.......... I must have missed that in the bible, could someone give me book,chapter and verse. It appears that Jesus thought that healthcare should be a right, what with all that healing in his travels. BUT, RIGHT to carry your Glock, I missed him cover that subject.

  • mitchstoner
    February 16, 2015 at 4:25 p.m.

    Well, once He did say , "those who have no sword, sell your cloak and buy a sword ."

    But. According to the Founding Fathers, all men (women and children, too, no doubt) are "endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, and among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Kinda think the right to defend oneself is implicit in those.

    You have the option of disagreeing, of course. What did those dumb Founding Fathers know, anyway? They were probably all a bunch of rich greedy republicans.

  • Packman
    February 16, 2015 at 7:15 p.m.

    Hey NoCrossNoCrown, nwr, and fsm - Can I place a large sign in your yard that says: "Homeowner is Anti-Gun. Enter at No Risk."