Texas gun rights lobby pushing back on calls for new laws

Texas News

Gun rights advocates gather outside the Texas Capitol where Texas Gov. Greg Abbott held a round table discussion, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019, in Austin, Texas. Abbott is meeting in Austin with officials from Google, Twitter and Facebook as well as officials from the FBI and state lawmakers to discuss ways of combatting extremism in light of the recent mass shooting in El Paso that reportedly targeted Mexicans. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas’ muscular gun-rights lobby is swiftly pushing back after Gov. Greg Abbott raised the possibility of tighter firearms laws after a gunman killed 22 people at an El Paso Walmart.

The resistance could test the relationship between gun-rights groups, Abbott and the state’s Republican leadership, which eased gun restrictions after previous mass shootings in 2017 and 2018.

Gun rights activists say they’ll resist calls to tighten gun laws and they were surprised when Abbott raised alarms about who is buying and selling firearms in unregulated private gun sales.

The Texas State Rifle Association said it will resist calls for more gun laws. And grassroots gun activists complained they were left out of the governor’s scheduled meetings with law enforcement, lawmakers and prominent advocates on both sides of the gun issue.

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