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Our man in the Gunshine State brings us up-to-date on the firearms-related bills currently circulating in the Florida legislature.


STAND YOUR GROUND (SB 128/HB 245, from Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, and Reps. Bobby Payne, R-Palatka and Jason Fischer, R-Jacksonville): Would shift the burden of proof in a criminal case where a defendant claims immunity under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law by requiring the prosecutor, not the defendant, to prove at a pre-trial hearing why the defendant shouldn’t be granted immunity from prosecution. In the amended Senate version, if the self-defense claim is unsuccessful, evidence presented at the pre-trial hearing would be inadmissible at trial.

DECRIMINALIZES “TEMPORARY AND OPEN DISPLAY” (SB 646, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Providing that a person licensed to carry a concealed weapon or firearm who is lawfully carrying a firearm does not violate certain provisions if the firearm is temporarily and openly displayed; authorizing each member of the Florida Cabinet to carry a concealed weapon or firearm if he or she is licensed to carry a concealed weapon or firearm and does not have full-time security provided by the Department of Law Enforcement, etc.

OPEN CARRY (SB 644, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would allow for the open carrying of handguns by the state’s 1.7 million concealed weapons permit-holders and would allow those permit-holders to carry guns in elementary and secondary schools, public college and university campuses, airport passenger terminals, legislative meetings, meetings of municipal, county, school or special district boards, and career centers.

GUN BAN LIABILITY (SB 610, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would make a private “business, organization, or entity” that bans concealed weapons liable for any injury or damage caused by a person or animal, if the incident “could reasonably have been prevented” had the permit-holder not been required to be disarmed.

GUNS IN COURTHOUSES (SB 616, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would allow concealed weapons permit-holders to carry guns in to courthouses and temporarily surrender and store the gun at a security checkpoint.

GUNS IN AIRPORTS (SB 618/HB 6001, from Se. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota and Rep. Jake Raburn, R-Lithia): Would lift a current ban and allow concealed weapons permit-holders to carry guns in passenger terminals and non-“sterile” areas of airports, which are locations outside of security checkpoints.

GUNS IN LEGISLATIVE MEETINGS (SB 620, from Sen Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would lift a current ban and allow concealed weapons permit-holders to carry guns in meetings of the Legislature, which include formal sessions and committee hearings.

GUNS ON CAMPUS (SB 622 / HB 6005, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota and Rep. Scott Plakon, R-Longwood): Would lift a current ban and allow concealed weapons permit-holders to carry guns on public college and university campuses. [Steube’s version is different in that it also clarifies guns would still be banned from any K-12, college or university athletic event “not related to firearms.”]

GUNS IN GOVERNMENT MEETINGS (SB 626, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would lift a current ban and allow concealed weapons permit-holders to carry guns in meetings of any municipality, county, school district or special district.

GUNS IN CAREER CENTERS (SB 640, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would lift a current ban and allow concealed weapons permit-holders to carry guns in career centers.


POLICE WAITING PERIOD EXEMPTION (HJR 291, from Reps. Don Hahnfeldt, R-The Villages, and Robert Asencio, D-Miami): Proposes a constitutional amendment to exempt law enforcement officers from the mandatory three-day waiting period for purchasing handguns. [Constitutional amendments must be approved by three-fifths of both the House and Senate — 72 members in the House and 24 in the Senate — in order to be placed on a ballot, and then 60-percent approval from voters is required for the measure to become law.]

THREATENING VIOLENCE (SB 88, from Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota): Would criminalize the act of threatening to use a firearm in a violent manner, under penalty of committing a second-degree felony.


GUN STORAGE (SB 142 , from Sen. Gary Farmer, D-Parkland): Would tighten language in an existing law that requires guns to be locked in a gun safe or have a trigger lock when around children age 16 or younger.

GUNS IN THEATERS BAN (SB 170, from Sen. Oscar Braynon, D-Miami Gardens): Would prohibit concealed-weapons permit holders from carrying in performing arts centers or theaters.

ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN (SB 254/HB 167, from Sen. Linda Stewart and Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, both Orlando Democrats): Would ban in Florida many specific assault-style firearms and “parts that convert a firearm into an assault weapon,” such as large-capacity magazines. Would make it a third-degree felony, with some exceptions, to sell or possess an assault weapon or large-capacity magazine, among other restrictions.

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  1. The passage of these bills depends strictly on a few guys in the leadership of the Republican controlled House and Senate and the Governor. That’s it. They’ve killed them before and probably again. There’s only so much Marian Hammer can do.

    Miami Vice was the shit. Nothing better since.

  2. Good luck Democrat senators of Florida on passing any assault weapons ban or yeah I guess I’m using your correct incorrect term there. We the people of Florida will not let you pass any ban that violates our second amendment rights. Don’t these Democrats no better than even trying this is ridiculous this topic has been discussed indefinitely and even some of the lefties agree that trying to ban a certain particular firearm is against the Constitution. But they just keep on coming.

    • Its just a publicity stunt by democrats. It has zero chance and they even admit it. All these Dems know how to do is waste time. The sad thing is to many democrat voters actually buy what these worthless humans sell.

    • There is a great scene where they are cruising in a 18′ Action Marine speed boat. I really like those boats they have sexy lines. Had one many years ago with a worked 245 Mercury that did 94mph. It’s literally scary fast in a 18′ boat.

      • Did you keep your damned booger hook off the bang switch when cruising the open waves? (If you did you’re one up on C & T.)

      • I believe its 3-5 days. Individual counties get to set the waiting period length with a max at 5. Broward and Palm Beach counties are set at the max of 5 days. I haven’t bought firearms elsewhere in the state.

    • CCW holders do not have a 3 day wait to purchase a handgun. Active LEO’s do not need a background check, but are required to wait 3 days before getting their handgun.

  3. GUNS IN THEATERS BAN: Would prohibit concealed-weapons permit holders from carrying in performing arts centers or theaters.

    Why? Is someone concerned that the performers would suck and patrons would be inclined to shoot the bad performers?

  4. not a big fan of guns in courthouses. hear me out. It seems like the county i live in just loves calling me up for jury duty. 3 times now in 7 years. Of course i carry with one in the chamber. Where would the safe clear area be located? not inside the building for sure. So anyone standing outside would have a clear view of who’s carrying and who to follow back out to their car for a quick conk on the noggin and score a free sidearm. Plus how many negligent discharges would there be clearing and re loading? Damn near everyone in my area( at least my circle of friends) carry, and some of them, to put it nicely, are a tad too old and frail ( and some just too f’n stupid) to be carrying. Not to mention how easy would it be for the gov’t to do a quick scan of the Serial # on your gun? Registry, anyone?
    I just see too many things that can go wrong. just a fact, flame the messenger if you must.

    doubt we’ll see open carry. sucks but at least we still have the ability to do so while going to, from and actively engaged in fishing, hunting, camping, and recreational shooting events. So I always carry a fishing pole in the truck. Honest Officer, I’m on my way to the gulf for some fishing!

    • Why clear it? Remove gun and holster and put it in the box.

      I sure don’t clear mine when I put it in the lockbox in my vehicle.

      Do most people clear the weapon when storing it?

      Not being facetious – just dont see the need for that much weapon handling.

    • So YOU’RE not comfortable carrying to a courthouse for the reasons you provided. Thing is, the proposed law would not REQUIRE you to do so. Those of us who ARE comfortable carrying to courthouse would still be able to, while having zero impact on you, or anyone else who does not feel comfortable doing so.

  5. Some DB can introduce anything they want. Big Deal! the ASB SB 254 has one con-sponsor. When you see that, you can almost be assured it will go nowhere.

  6. HJR 291- no.

    If LEOS want to avoid a waiting period to buy personal property, they can get a ccw just like I have to. Meanwhile, they don’t have a waiting period for issued firearms. Or we could just do away with the waiting period altogether.

  7. No carve outs for law enforcement officers!
    They are citizens like the rest of us
    They should be subject to the same laws


    This should be moved into the anti category.

    LE/Gov carveouts are against everything we should stand for as a Republic.

  9. Ok, TTAG needs to stop posting incorrect information. Some of the descriptions of these bills are way off. The senate website often has misleading synopses.

    • That’s how they get things passed. All the crap that “sounds good” that is on the ballots for example. Best just to vote “no” on most of that stuff. For example, Florida’s constitution now bans a practice in raising pigs where the sow is in a chute and unable to turn around. The horror! The inhumanity! #dosomething!!!!! Now why did farmers use this technique, a thinking person might ask. Simple. By making it impossible for the sows to turn around, they wouldn’t EAT THEIR YOUNG. But the effing snowflakes know better, don’t they?

  10. Democrats always introduce bills that restrict liberty. Why do those fool Democrats think that banning guns in theaters will make them safer? Armed criminals will just know where to go to find defenseless victims!

    Do law-abiding licensed carriers shoot up theaters now? If they can be trusted to carry in stores, malls, public parks, libraries, museums, and many government buildings in Florida, what makes theaters a special case?

    To Democrats, theaters aren’t special places. It just one type of place among many where they’d like to ban licensed carry. If they had their way, more places would be added to the list, until a license to carry would be useless, as there would be no places left to carry in public. That’s their end game.


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