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Backers Say Effort to Halt Permitless Carry Law Did Not Get Enough Signatures

open_carry_handgun.jpg
Lucio Eastman
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Oklahoma’s permitless carry law appears clear to take effect Nov. 1.

In a court filing, the group trying to stop the gun law said it gathered just 30,000 to 50,000 signatures of the roughly 60,000 needed to put it to a statewide vote.

Rep. Jason Lowe said volunteers from Moms Demand Action did their best, with signatures coming in right up until the 5 p.m. deadline on Aug. 29.

"We literally received petitions at 4:55 p.m. from Tulsa, all over the state. So, we don’t have an actual count, but that’s our best estimate, that we did not meet the threshold," Lowe said.

"But we do know that thousands and thousands of citizens in the state of Oklahoma made their voices clear with the amount of signatures that we gathered. If it was 30,000 or 50,000, we did this in two weeks without any funding, just volunteers," Lowe said.

House Bill 2597 was the first bill signed into law by Gov. Kevin Stitt. It allows Oklahomans to carry a gun without a license or the training or background check a license requires.

Lowe said they may consider other options to stop permitless carry now, like a lawsuit or initiative petition.

"I say this strongly that we are not going anywhere. We’re going to continue to fight. We’re going to continue to push. We believe that this is a dangerous law, and in order for us to be a top-10 state, this law does not need to be enacted," Lowe said.

An initiative petition would require around 95,000 signatures to qualify for the ballot.

The filing puts to rest a challenge to the proposed veto referendum. It sought to have the state question struck down for having a misleading gist.