TULSA, Okla. (AP) – An Oklahoma lawmaker is proposing legislation allowing the governor and top elected officials to carry firearms, placing armed police officers in private schools and slashing the cost of obtaining or renewing handgun permits.
Republican state Sen. Josh Brecheen has drafted four gun rights bills ahead of next year’s legislative session.
Brecheen says laws are necessary to counter what he believes is a constant threat of terrorism carried out by the Islamic State and other groups. Brecheen says having armed officers in private schools could deter would-be mass shooters.
But some lawmakers say there are more pressing issues, including a budget shortfall estimated in the hundreds of millions of dollars. They also must find a way to fund public education and to keep teachers from leaving Oklahoma for better pay.