Georgia gun rights advocates are savoring a big victory at the state Capitol. They helped win state House passage of a measure expanding the areas where guns can be carried. However, the final outcome remains unclear.
GeorgiaCarry.org helped pave the way for Thursday's 117 to 56 state House vote in favor of legislation giving licensed gun owners new access to bars, churches and many areas of college campuses. But Jerry Henry knows his group still has work to do.
"We've still got to go through the Senate, but hopefully we'll be able to do the same thing over there that we did in the House," said Henry.
Passage came despite arguments that expanded access for guns could lead to new dangers.
"There is no data – none -- to support the argument that the cure for gun violence is more guns," said Rep. Scott Holcomb (D-Atlanta) said on Thursday.
The bill passed on "Crossover Day," which is the deadline for most bills to get a House or Senate vote.
But final passage is not assured; the Senate earlier passed a gun bill of its own with other provisions.
For now at least, Henry says Georgiacarry.org is optimistic about making the case for HB 512.
"Well, it restores our Constitutional rights, for one thing, and allows you to defend yourself in a whole lot more places," Henry said.
The General Assembly goes back into session on Monday with 10 days left in this year's legislative session.
Georgiacarry.org and other gun rights advocates oppose some parts of the House bill and plan to push for changes in the Senate.