Joseph Geller Calls for a Special Session of the Florida Legislature to Regulate Guns, Expand Red Flag Law

In response to recent mass shootings across the country and in Florida, this week, state Rep. Joseph Geller, D-Aventura, called for a special session of the Legislature.

Geller wrote Florida Secretary of State Cord Byrd on the matter, calling for the Legislature to focus on regulating large capacity rifle magazines, limiting the destructive power of the most common weapons used in the deadliest mass shootings;” backing “Universal Background Checks for firearms sales, adding a layer of security to ensure guns stay out of the hands of those who should not possess them;” and expanding “Florida’s successful Red Flag law, passed after the Parkland shooting.”

When 20 percent of the Legislature makes this request to the Department of State, the Secretary of State is required to conduct a poll of the Legislature. Sixty percent of both chambers must then vote for the special session. Alternatively, the two presiding officers or the governor could call a special session.

“Something must be done to fight back against the deadly scourge of gun violence that touches every community from Pensacola to Key West,” Geller said. “It has invaded our schools, our supermarkets, our houses of worship, and our neighborhoods. People deserve to feel safe in their own communities, and it’s past time we do something. Hopefully, responsible Republicans will join us in the discussion and we can find ways to make our communities safer. Floridians deserve nothing less.”

State Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando, is backing Geller on the matter.

“Universal criminal background checks are consistently supported by overwhelming bipartisan majorities of Floridians. Expanding Florida’s Red Flag law, already proven effective at keeping guns out of the hands of those who should not have them, would save even more lives while limiting large capacity rifle magazines can help prevent mass shootings like the one at Pulse nightclub that took the lives of 49 people in 2016. Each of these common-sense gun safety reforms will make our state more safe. We cannot sit back and do nothing while Floridians demand action,” Smith said.

With Republicans in control of both chambers, a special session dealing with guns is not expected.

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