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Florida Action Report! Antigun Republicans EXPOSED in Committee Hearing

Wednesday, December 6, 2017


DATE: December 6, 2018
TO: USF & NRA Members and Friends
FROM: Marion P. Hammer
  USF Executive Director
  NRA Past President

This is the first of a 3-Part Report of the Senate Judiciary Hearing 12/5/2017

PART # 1   Three (3) progun bills die at the hands of anti-gun Republicans

PROGUN BILL #1:  SB-274 Church Property, by Sen. Kelli Stargel (R-Lakeland) eliminates the unconstitutional restrictions that prevent churches, synagogues and other religious institutions from allowing private security or concealed firearms license holders to carry firearms on church property if church property is ever used for day care or any type of schooling. KILLED by a vote of 4-6

Republican Senators Rene Garcia (R-Hialeah) and Anitere Flores (R-Miami) both who falsely claim to be Second Amendment supporters joined Democrats on the Committee to kill the bill.

Sen. Garcia tried hide his treacherous behavior by claiming the bill violated a compromise from last year and attempted to blame the House for the bill dying last year.

First, there was NO COMPROMISE last year. Sen. Stargel, wanted to pass the bill last year so she agreed to accept bad amendments by Sen. Flores and Sen. Audrey Gibson (D).  Those amendment effectively gutted the bill. Sen. Stargel also promised Sen. Gibson to withdraw her bill if anybody tried to remove those amendments in another committee.  That obstructed the process and prevented other Senators from attempting to fix the bill.

The defeat of this bill falls totally on the shoulders of Sen. Rene Garcia and Sen. Anitere Flores.  Churches, synagogues, and other religious institutions can blame them for blocking their private property rights and their right to provide safety and security for church members and guests on church property.

PROGUN BILL # 2: SB-134 Courthouse Carry by Sen. Greg Steube (R-Sarasota) is a bill to allow persons with licenses to carry concealed firearms to "check" their firearms at the security entrance of the courthouse and retrieve it upon leaving the courthouse. Further, it defines "courthouse" to prevent anti-gun judges from attempting to create extensive gun-free-zones around courthouses.

Sen. Steube had a strike-all amendment to create a whole new bill instead of simply courthouse carry.  The amendment included courthouse carry; church property rights; the open carry fix; a resolution to Congress and President Trump to instruct BAFTE to revisit and evaluate their  "Bump-Stock" approval; and language to require FDLE to notify local law enforcement when someone with a criminal record or is otherwise prohibited from buying, owning or possessing a firearm, attempts to illegally buy a firearm.  On a voice vote, the Chair declared that the amendment had passed. 

Sen. Bobby Powell (D-W. Palm Beach) offered an amendment to prohibit concealed weapons license holders from carrying firearms into Tax Collectors' offices.  The amendment was requested by the very antigun Palm Beach Tax Collector Anne Gannon (D). Tax Collectors from other counties were there to oppose the amendment and Sen. Powell subsequently withdrew the amendment.

On a vote of 4-6, the amended bill then was then KILLED by Republicans Sens. Rene Garcia and Anitere Flores.

PROGUN BILL # 3: SB-148 Open Carry Abuse by Sen. Greg Steube (R-Sarasota) is a bill to stop abuse of law-abiding citizens who are licensed to carry concealed firearms for self-defense. A license holder whose firearm becomes temporarily and openly displayed to the ordinary sight of another person is not a criminal and this innocent act should not be a crime

In Florida, there are 1.8 million law-abiding license holders, Every time they leave their homes, carrying a firearm,  they run the risk of that firearm becoming exposed to the sight of another person and then being treated like a criminal.  It's time to stop that.  It's time to stop criminalizing the exercise of a constitutional right. This bill was KILLED on 5-5 a tie vote created by Sen. Anitere Flores once again voting against Second Amendment rights.

Republican Senators Debbie Mayfield, Lizbeth Benacquisto, Rob Bradley, and Greg Steube voted in favor all progun bills.

Democrat Senators Randolph Bracy, Audrey Gibson, Bobby Powell, and Perry Thurston voted against all progun bills.

Florida Open Carry Church Carry

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.