The Palm Beach Post,
September 17, 2019-
The gun control debate expected in the upcoming 2020 legislative session will feature extreme initiatives on both sides, including bills that would lift the ban on bump stocks, and allow guns to be openly carried on college campuses and give local governments the power to enact their own gun laws. Ten bills have already been filed, three by Republicans and seven by Democrats, including three of the Democrats representing Broward County, home to Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School. A gunman opened fire at the school on Valentine’s Day 2018, killing 17 and wounding 17 others.
Already, gun control is poised to become a major issue in the upcoming session. On Monday, the Florida Senate panel charged with probing the causes of mass shootings spent three hours listening to expert testimony Monday while mostly sidestepping discussion of whether tougher gun laws may be needed. Among the most controversial measures are three bills filed by conservative House members from GOP strongholds in the Panhandle and Central Florida. Pensacola Republican state Rep. Mike Hill, who made a name for himself last session with a controversial fetal-heartbeat, has filed a sweeping pro-gun bill, HB 6003, that would gut some of the state’s toughest gun control measures.