Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gwen Graham is calling on the Legislature to stop gun-lobby-backed bills moving through committee, including Adam Putnam’s unbelievably reckless proposal to skirt background checks, and to finally pass common sense gun safety measures, in the wake of yesterday’s horrific shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School.
“As a mother, the pain of this senseless shooting, like so many others, is excruciating. Nothing will ever bring back the children and teachers who lost their lives in yesterday’s horrific tragedy — and the silence and inaction of politicians did nothing to save them,” Graham said. “If there are any real leaders in Tallahassee, they should take action right now to save lives. The Legislature should immediately stop advancing bills concocted by the gun lobby and halt Adam Putnam’s foolish and deadly proposal to grant carry permits to possible criminals and terrorists.”
“I expect Republicans will attack me for talking about real proposals that would save lives today, but as a mother, I will not be silent. As a mother, I will speak out for the children who lost their lives, for the teachers who heroically acted to save lives, for the first responders who rush into dangerous situations every day, and for the families in unspeakable pain this morning,” Graham said.
Since Governor Rick Scott took office, Florida has suffered 14 school shootings and the Pulse massacre, the deadliest mass shooting in America, at the time. In that time, the legislature hasn’t taken a single meaningful action to protect our children from gun violence — from mass slaughter.
“Adam Putnam has expanded the state’s concealed weapons license program to be the largest in the country — he’s expedited almost 100,000 permits. But more guns on Florida’s streets have not made our children safer. Not one of those guns permitted by Putnam prevented yesterday’s slaughter. Common sense gun laws may have,” Graham said. “if there’s the chance expanding gun safety could save even one life, we must act.
Putnam is advocating for state lawmakers to loosen Florida’s concealed weapons law so that people can attain gun licenses before criminal background checks have been completed. The bill, S 740 / H 553 could allow domestic abusers, felons, and other prohibited purchasers to carry loaded, hidden guns in public.
“Florida’s gun laws are a joke riddled with loopholes that let dangerous people get guns and inflict serious harm, like yesterday’s horrific mass shooting and on the streets of too many communities every single day,” Graham said. “Instead of taking real action to make our state safer, the politicians in Tallahassee want to allow open carry and to actually weaken penalties for those who violate the state’s already weak laws.”
“Strengthening background checks, ban large capacity ammunition clips, removing guns from domestic abusers and ban assault weapons would save lives in our state,” Graham said. “As a mother, I will not be silent. As governor, I will turn our anguish into action.”
Graham’s Gun Safety Proposals
- Comprehensive universal background checks on all gun sales to stop criminals and terrorists from purchasing guns
- A ban on large-capacity feeding devices to stop high-fatality mass shootings
- Require abusers to surrender firearms when a protective order is issued against them to protect victims of violence
- Invest in mental health and give law enforcement the tools they need to prevent those with serious mental illness from purchasing or keeping firearms