HB 2269

84(R) - 2015
House Homeland Security & Public Safety
House Homeland Security & Public Safety
2nd Amendment

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Positive
  • Neutral
  • Positive
  • Positive


Will Metcalf

Bill Caption

Relating to the unlawful seizure of a firearm by a governmental officer or employee; providing penalties.

Fiscal Notes

No fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.

The bill would create a Class A misdemeanor offense for a government employee to seize a firearm in accordance with a federal law that does not exist under Texas law. The bill would create an exception to this rule if the seizure is consistent with United States Constitutional authority. This exception could be negated in the event that the prosecution proves beyond a reasonable doubt that, based on a decision by the United States Supreme Court, the aforementioned federal law is not within the scope of powers granted by the United States Constitution.

A Class A misdemeanor is punishable by a fine of not more than $4,000,confinement in jail for a term not to exceed one year, or both. 

Bill Analysis

This legislation would make it a Class A misdemeanor for any government employee at any level of government to confiscate a firearm under the auspices of a law other than the laws of Texas. The purpose of this legislation is to protect Texas citizens from having their 2nd Amendment civil rights violated by enforcement of unconstitutional federal laws. Certain exemptions would be provided for as described in the fiscal note above.

Vote Recommendation Notes

While there may be jurisdictional issues for courts to consider should people be prosecuted under the provisions of this legislation, the intent and affect of this bill are sound enough. Public officials, no matter their rank or in which level of government they serve, have a basic duty to protect and not to infringe on the civil liberties of citizens. To the extent that officials may infringe on 2nd Amendment protections, there should be legal consequences for those individuals. This legislation seeks to establish that, at least so far as Texas is concerned, unconstitutional confiscation of firearms will not be permitted, even if done so under the auspices of federal law. For those reasons we support this bill under our limited government, individual liberty, and personal responsibility principles. If there are any jurisdictional issues involved, those are for the courts to decide.