Florida law not only can fine mayors who push gun control policy, but could remove them from office

Amid the media-driven hysteria for gun control in the wake of last week’s shooting at a Florida high school, the state has some of the toughest laws in the nation when it comes to cities and counties trying to restrict the use of firearms.

The Sunshine State has banned local gun rules since the 1980s, according to the Miami Herald, but the law has since gotten tougher.

As it stands, state law preempts local governments from passing any ordinances that regulate guns. Mayors who feel compelled to ignore the law, stand to be fined $5,000 dollars.

(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

But an even more compelling penalty that is sure to get their attention is that local officials can even be removed from office, the newspaper reported.

“I think it’s outrageous,” South Miami Democratic Mayor Philip Stoddard told The Herald. “Why should the cities be prohibited from protecting their citizens?”

Only Democrats consider limiting your 2nd Amendment rights as “protecting” you.

Sally Abrahamsen, of Pompano Beach, Fla., right, holds a Glock 42 handgun while shopping for a gun at the National Armory gun store and gun range, Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016, in Pompano Beach, Fla. President Barack Obama unveiled his plan Tuesday to tighten control and enforcement of firearms in the U.S.  (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

The tougher measures were part of an effort in 2011, Florida Carry volunteer director Sean Caranna noted.

“A number of cities and local counties decided they were going to break the law,” said the head of the gun rights advocacy group. “They made the conscious decision to say: ‘We don’t care what the law is. We’re going to break it.’”

“We put teeth into the law.”

(AP Photo/Steve Cannon)

Teeth that include barring local governments from using tax dollars to challenge the state preemption laws in court — a favorite liberal tactic.

Not that Democrats like former state lawmaker Sally Heyman, now a member of the Miami-Dade County Commission, haven’t tried to pull those teeth.

“We can’t do a damn thing at the city or county level, or we’ll be punished,” Heyman said. “I’ve been there with the deaf ears in Tallahassee.”

Cities were expected to repeal local gun laws after Gov. Rick Scott signed the 2011 legislation into law, but Miami Gardens only removed its “No Guns” signs from local parks, refusing to change any laws, The Herald reported.

“We understand if we in any way enforce it, they could fine us and legally remove us from office,” said Mayor Oliver Gilbert. “But we wouldn’t take the law off our books.”

Fortunately, at least for now, Florida is run by a Republican-majority legislature and respect for the 2nd Amendment prevails.

“If in their pursuit of happiness, someone attempts to infringe upon that, they should be afforded the right to protect themselves,” said GOP state Rep. Brad Drake, who is a co-sponsor of the bill. “That decision has to be made somewhere.”

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