AUSTIN - Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has joined 23 other states in urging Congress to enact national concealed-carry reciprocity legislation.

In a letter to Congress, the attorneys general ask representatives to support the Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 (S. 446) and the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 (H.R. 38).

“We share a strong interest in the protection of our citizens’ Second Amendment rights to keep and bear arms, and we are committed to supporting federal and state policies to preserve that constitutional right,” the attorneys general wrote in the letter. “These bills, if enacted, would eliminate significant obstacles to the exercise of the right to keep and bear arms for millions of Americans in every State.”

The proposed legislation would allow law-abiding citizens to carry concealed weapons in states where they do not reside, which some state laws do not allow.

The attorneys general argue that, beyond being a basic constitutional right, states that do not allow non-residents to carry concealed weapons leave these citizens in danger and with no real option for self-defense in instances of violence.

“States should not be able to deny citizens of the United States the basic constitutional right to self-defense,” Paxton said. “Texas has chosen to respect the rights of residents and non-residents to carry arms for self-defense. I ask Congress to protect these same rights for law-abiding Texans as they travel throughout the United States.”

The states signing the letter are: Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Montana, Georgia, Nebraska, Idaho, Nevada, Indiana, North Dakota, Kansas, Ohio, Louisiana, South Carolina, Michigan, Missouri, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin, Utah, Wyoming, West Virginia.

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