Senator Don Barrington (R-Lawton), Chairman of the Senate Public Safety Committee, is the consummate politician. He's very good at keeping you at bay when you want to know his intentions with the bills assigned to his committee. He smiles and is quite personable as he tells you he'll "take a look at it."
We've heard "I'll take a look at it" quite a bit. It is becoming clear, though, that the Senator is not interested in furthering the rights of gun owners. Oh, sure, he does just enough so he can tell his constituents he is pro-gun, but is he really?
Case in point. He has an opportunity to hear some very important bills. The Firearms Freedom Act, a bill prohibiting public employees from using pubic money to promote gun control, and another to remove the felony penalty for carrying a gun on a bus. Did the Senator schedule these bills for his final meeting this week? No. Instead he schedules two bills, one that increases the number of students in SDA classes and another providing for a 10-year certificate for SDA instructors. Yes, they're two good bills, but let's be honest; they don't really do anything to further our gun rights.
Why won't he hear the others? Not enough time? I doubt that. He has scheduled a whopping seven bills for the final meeting. Not to mention, they took Wednesday afternoon and all of Thursday off last week. Why? For Good Friday
The Senator said he would not hear HB1558, the bus carry bill, unless he got a letter of endorsement from an organization in Virginia even though his own constituents have asked him to hear it. Apparently the Senator values the opinions of Virginians over Oklahomans.
There's actually more than enough blame to go around. Senator Schulz had an opportunity to move the bill from Senator Barrington's Committee to another committee. The Senate author and the chairman of the other committee actually requested it be moved and promised to hear the bill. Senator Schulz did absolutely nothing.
The deadline for HB1558 (Bus Carry), HB2020 (prohibiting promotion of gun control with public money), HB2021 (Firearms Freedom Act), and HB 2221 (immunity from liability for business that allow carry) to be added to the agenda for the final meeting of the Senate Public Safety Committee is Wednesday morning. Please call Senator Barrington and ask him why he hasn't scheduled these bills. And, ask him why he's more concerned about what a Virginian things about HB1558 than his own constituents.
Senator Barrington's phone number is 405-521-5563 and his email address is firstname.lastname@example.org