Representative Hubert Vo (D) of Houston is a freshman who unseated veteran Rep. Heflin in an election that saw Vo win by something on the order of 33 votes. Vo did not return the TSRA questionnaire, so he was rated "?."
People rated "?" usually are not good on our issue. There have been many pleasant surprises and I had hoped Vo would be one. He signed onto HB225 as a co-author of a bill that would extend the effective period of CHL's to five years. Obviously, this is a pretty safe position to take, as it is hardly a controversial bill and there are something like 90 co-authors.
Unfortunately, Rep. Vo does not appear to be one of the "pleasant surprises," in view of his filing of HB2633 - a companion bill to Sen. Ellisâ€™ SB664. In fairness to him, the "Law Enforcement Facility" prohibition bill is being strongly pushed by the Chief of the Houston Police Department and I feel certain fellow Democrat and Houstonian Senator Ellis has put pressure on him to carry the companion bill in the House. I'm not saying this is a good excuse for filing this garbage, or that we shouldn't strongly oppose it, but I'm hoping he redeems himself by not requesting a hearing on his bill. (Wow, I'm starting to sound like a Baptist preacher. Baptist I am; preacher I'm not.)
Representative Vo will be apprised of the true impact of his bill, as well as alternatives already in Texas law to deal with potential prisoner access to firearms in real law enforcement facilities. If he still seeks a hearing on his bill, then we will know his true colors.
UPDATE: HB2633 has been referred to the Law Enforcement Committee - 3/16/05
I'm pleased to report that this appears to be a bad bill filed in good faith by a freshman Representative at the request of the Chief of the Houston Police Department. Rep. Vo is a CHL holder. Now we can wait to see if Rep. Vo presses for a hearing on his bill in Committee. This will tell us where his heart really lies.