Legislative Update: Florida Sheriffs and Republican Senators Kill Pro Second Amendment Bill
Last week at the close of the legislative session the Florida Sheriffs Association killed SB-296/HB-209 — the bill to allow citizens to carry their firearms with them (rather than leave firearms behind for looters) when they are under a mandatory evacuation during a declared state of emergency.
Be perfectly clear, this was a straight up Second Amendment issue in its purest form. And the Florida Sheriffs Association opposed your fundamental individual right to keep and bear arms at a time when you most need to be able to protect yourself and your family.
The US District Court in NC in Baseman vs. Perjure struck down emergency declaration laws like the Florida laws we were trying to fix.
The Court said:
“The problem here is that the emergency declaration statutes, are not narrowly tailored to serve the government’s interest in public safety. They do not target dangerous individuals or dangerous conduct. Nor do they seek to impose reasonable time, place and manner restrictions by, for example, imposing a curfew to allow the exercise of Second Amendment rights during circumscribed times. Rather, the statutes here excessively intrude upon plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights by effectively banning them (and the public at large) from engaging in conduct that is at the very core of the Second Amendment at a time when the need for self-defense may be at its very greatest….Consequently, the emergency declaration laws are invalid…”
Nonetheless, the Florida Sheriffs Association and a handful of Senate Republicans who joined Sen. Jack Latvala in abandoning the Second Amendment for the convenience of law enforcement, blocked restoration of your constitutional right. Knowing that if the bill were amended it would have to go back to House where it would NOT come up again, they voted 23-15 for an amendment they knew would kill the bill.
We suspect the intention, all along, of the Florida Sheriffs Association was to kill the bill. They tried to kill HB-89 the so-called “warning shot” bill but failed. They pulled out all the stops on the mandatory evacuation bill.
Make no mistake, the Florida Sheriffs Association has declared war on the Second Amendment. Their actions have made it clear their 2013 Proclamation Supporting the Second Amendment was nothing more than camouflage.
Sheriffs repeatedly made it clear that the only thing they cared about was their convenience.
There are too many sheriffs, state’s Attorneys and Republican politicians in Florida who campaign as pro Second Amendment candidates and then get in office and do everything in their power to undermine our rights. They believe that they are the only ones competent and trustworthy to possess firearms. We must hold them accountable at the ballot box.
They are not are friends and are unworthy of our votes just because they have an R next to their name on the ballot.