Florida Leads the U.S. in Concealed Firearm Permits, Texas Somehow Far Behind

Florida is slated to become the first state with one million concealed firearm permits, Bloomberg reported yesterday. State officials issued 993,200 active permits as of Nov. 30, and are expected to pass the one million mark next week.

“Floridians have a great respect and appreciation for their Second Amendment rights,” said Adam Putnam, Florida’s commissioner of agriculture and consumer affairs.

This got me thinking about the Texas number. So I called the state department of public safety, and they sent me to their website (technology!). The numbers aren’t exactly apples-to-apples (the newest Texas numbers are for last year), but they still paint a picture where, despite all the Second Amendment bluster statewide, Texas actually trails Florida by a significant amount.

2011: 518,625 (total permits, statewide)
2010: 461,724
2009: 402,914
2008: 314,574
2007: 288,909
2006: 258,162
2005: 248,874
2004: 239,940
2003: 239,863
2002: 224,172

That 2003 to 2004 jump (only 77 new permits) seems suspect, but the others seem to jibe with the Florida growth trend of a near doubling of permits over four full years. Texas is actually fourth nationwide, behind Florida, Pennsylvania, and Georgia, according to the GAO.

I then checked this year’s applicants, by zip code, to see where they were from. The top 10:

77379 (Spring): 761 approved applicants
77573 (League City): 706
77429 (Cypress): 688
77584 (Pearland): 613
77346 (Humble): 551
75052 (Grand Prairie): 549
77546 (Friendswood): 532
77494 (Katy): 526
76028 (Burleson): 522
77095 (Houston): 520

Moral of the story? Stay out of the Houston suburbs.

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