On Monday, Florida lawmakers introduced legislation to allow citizens to carry concealed firearms without a government-issued permit.
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The bill, HB 543, was introduced by Republican state Rep. Chuck Brannan.
“Our right to bear arms, of course, is enshrined in the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The bill that I will file later today continues to advance Second Amendment freedoms through legislation known as ‘constitutional carry,’” said Brannan at a recent press conference.
Further, Brannan explained, “I believe Floridians have the right to bear arms to protect themselves, their families and their property without government interference. This bill is a big step to help the average law-abiding citizen to keep from having to go through the hoops of getting a permit from the government to carry their weapons.”
Florida House Speaker Paul Renner and several law enforcement officials joined Brannan in introducing the bill to show their support.
House Bill 543 will authorize Florida residents and non-residents to carry concealed without a license, provided they meet the legal requirements to carry a weapon.
Some restrictions will exist, such as specific locations like school property and events, as well as the requirement to carry identification and display said identification upon demand by law enforcement.
Essentially, law-abiding citizens will be able to carry a concealed weapon more simply, without asking the government for permission and without paying the fee.
In regard to the motive for introducing such legislation, Brannan stated, “[Criminals] are getting guns anyway. They’re breaking into houses, they’re breaking into cars, and they’re carrying guns illegally. They don’t care what the law says. We are only giving our law-abiding citizens a simpler way to have the ability to protect themselves, their families, their homes and their places of business.”
Florida’s push for constitutional carry comes at a decisive moment for 2A rights. Following the tragic shootings over the last few weeks, extensive gun control has been a hot topic across the country.
Further, the ATF is attempting to redefine AR-pistol braces and Illinois recently passed the unconstitutional “Protect Illinois Communities Act” banning “assault weapons” and “high-capacity magazines” from being manufactured or sold in the state.
Should the Florida bill pass, the Sunshine State will become the 26th state to institute such laws, thus making constitutional carry the law of the land for over half of the country.
Jason Ouimet, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action, told Fox News Digital, “There is no reason why a law-abiding citizen should have to apply for a government permission slip to carry a firearm to protect themselves and their family.”
At the press conference, Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey stated, “We as Florida sheriffs stand solidly behind this, and we stand behind the oath that we took to protect the United States Constitution and the Constitution of Florida.”
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