Surprisingly, South Carolina has lagged most of the nation with regards to the open carry of handguns.
However, that may change with HB 3094, which the South Carolina House passed on March 17, 2021. Under HB 3094, an individual who possesses a concealed carry license can also open carry.
Although the bill needs one more vote in the House, it will likely be passed in the final reading and go on to the Senate, where it will also probably be approved due to the Senate’s partisan makeup (30 Republicans to 16 Democrats).
Constitutional Carry legislation has similarly been introduced in the South Carolina xxx this year. South Carolina is ranked in 22nd place for Guns and Ammo magazine’s Best States for Gun Owners rankings. Additionally, South Carolina finds itself in 29th place for Guns and Ammo concealed carry rankings.
In sum, South Carolina still has work to do as far as its Second Amendment rights are concerned. Ideally, passing open carry and Constitutional Carry would put it back on the right track. However, the passage of open carry is more likely at this point.
Nevertheless, politics has taught many conservatives one thing: it never hurts to push for radical legislation. By pushing the envelope on meatier reforms like Constitutional Carry, the political class is often compelled to negotiate and compromise by offering legislation like legalized open carry or the reduction of concealed carry license fees.
That’s how negotiations work and it always helps to shoot as high as the current political reality permits. Ironically, advocating for more radical reforms like Constitutional Carry makes gradual reforms like legal open carry possible in states like South Carolina.
It would behoove liberty conservatives to grasp this dynamic within all political negotiations.