April 06, 2008

Florida legislature wrangles over guns

Florida gun crimes up in 2007

TALLAHASSEE - The rate of serious crimes in Florida edged up in 2007 after years of declines, with a particularly alarming increase in the number of crimes involving guns.

Murders involving guns went up 11.5 percent last year and armed robberies with guns increased by 25 percent, from about 14,300 in 2006 to just under 18,000 last year. Aggravated assaults with firearms also went up, by 6.5 percent. - More . . . Firstcoast News

A legislative solution: Take your guns to town, son

TALLAHASSEE - The Senate is poised to give final approval next week to a bill allowing people with permits to carry guns to work regardless of their employers’ wishes.

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Durell Peaden, R-Crestview, has been one of the most heavily lobbied this session, pitting business interests that opposed the bill against the pro-gun lobby and trial attorneys.

After less than an hour’s floor debate Thursday — with opposition coming from a few Democrats — the Senate brought its bill in line with the version that passed the House last week.

The bill says private businesses cannot prevent customers or employees who hold concealed weapons permits from bringing their guns onto employers’ property as long as the guns stay locked in cars. It also grants several exemptions, including places such as schools (although not child care centers or pre-schools), law enforcement facilities and jails, airports and defense contractors. - More . . . The News-Press

What drove capitol gunslingers to pull the trigger?

TALLAHASSEE - The more than $2.5 billion worth of state programs, services and jobs lawmakers have to cut from the budget this year has weighted the mood in Tallahassee.

Republicans, who dominate the House, the Senate and the governor's office, have lost nine seats to Democrats in less than two years. And at 77 to 43, the party makeup of the House is close to what it was in 1992 when Democrats held the majority. The economy was also struggling then, and Republicans won the majority of seats in the House by 1996.

The result is anxious legislators wondering how to show they deserve another term.

The dynamic can bring to the forefront hot-button social issues that placate certain voters - namely Republican ones, as Republicans have control in the House and Senate and get to set the agenda. - More . . . The Ledger

Update, Apr. 9: 'Guns to work' passes Senate, 26-13

1 comment:

Baldwin Park Democrat said...

I'm not a big gun fan but I could be if a Republican gets in the White House in November LOL

A gun locked in the car at work is a gun available to be used. And unless there are metal detectors at work, I'll bet a lot of those who have a permit will take their guns into the workplace in spite of the law. It gives them a sense of something - not sure exactly what.