LIVE UPDATES: Constitutional Firearm Carry Legislation Faces First Vote

Another Major Gun Legislation Hits Capitol

There’s a serious bill in the Arkansas Legislature that would fundamentally change parts of Arkansas’s gun laws and use of force. It’s facing its first big vote in the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday morning. Keep this page bookmarked this Thursday (and this legislative session) as we will update this live as the HR1013 is discussed and voted on in the House Judiciary Committee.


 11:00 AM 


  • House Judiciary Committee declines to immediately consider HR1013. So, the committee adjourns, and the resolution will continue debate on Tuesday, Feb. 12
  • Rep. Clowney: “Too many Arkansans have signed up to speak on this bill. It’s our job to listen to them.”


 10:50 AM 


  • Discussion in the committee to adjourn and pick up Tuesday or to move for immediate consideration.
  • The committee now roll calls to limit debate.


 10:40 AM 


  • Concerned citizen Sherman Tate gives powerful testimony against HR1013: “I am a support of the the Second Amendment; I am a combat veteran. I am pleading to vote for common sense.”
  • Tate responds to Rep. Smith’s comment of understanding the intent of the firearm carrier: “Our law enforcement does not know the intent of the person. A vote against this resolution is a vote for our law enforcement.”


 10:30 AM 


  • Democratic Rep. Jamie Scott again questions how this would not be a violation of the separation of powers considering the Arkansas Supreme Court has not yet ruled in the Taff case
  • After more questions from Rep. Scott and Rep. Blake, Rep. Smith says he doesn’t want to wait for the highest court


 10:25 AM 


  • Democratic Rep. Charles Blake (and the House Minority Leader) asks Rep. Smith for “the need of this resolution.” He says that to pass this resolution would force legislators to “interpret” law not to “make law” as they were elected to do.
  • Rep. Blake rejects Rep. Smith’s reply. He says that “if you want to run a constitutional carry bill, you should run a bill, not a resolution.” Rep. Blake says this would not be transparent.


 10:20 AM 


  • Rep. Smith says that once passed law enforcement should take into consideration the “intent of the person” open carrying a firearm
  • Democratic Rep. Don Glover points out that the Taff decision is an appeals court decision, not one made by the Arkansas Supreme Court. Therefore, the state’s highest court could overturn the Taff decision making HR1013 further unclear and unnecessary


 10:15 AM 


  • Republican Rep. Tosh asks the first question. He asks the Rep. Smith to explain that HR1013 is a “resolution” not a “bill”
  • “The point of this resolution is to get us all around the table and to have a hard talk,” says Rep. Smith. “We just want clarification, and that’s what this resolution would do.”
  • First Democratic question comes from Rep. Clowney: “Wouldn’t this further muddy the water, considering that is not a bill?” Further, “how would this affect currently law?”
  • Sponsors continue to cite Jamie Taff v. State of Arkansas, and appeals court division, that HR1013 claims to “clarify”



 Thursday, 10:00 AM 


  • The Republican House (Rep. Smith) sponsor refers to HR1013 as a “simple clarification” with regard to gun rights.
  • He further claims that both Governor Asa Hutchinson and AG Leslie Rutledge have stated that they view Arkansas as a “open carry state” Read more about that here >>> 




 Here’s a quick recap! 


Confusion among gun owners in Arkansas led one legislator to file a House resolution asking for clarity. State Rep. Brandt Smith, R-Jonesboro, filed HR1013 asking members of the Arkansas House to acknowledge Arkansas as a constitutional carry state that does not require a permit to carry concealed or openly. “I personally have let my concealed carry permit expire,” Smith said. “I don’t plan on getting another one.” Smith said that a gun rights group known as Patriots of Act 746 asked him for clarity on the law. That inspired him to file the resolution. Read more at KATV website >>>



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