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ICYMI: Florida Democrats and Gun Violence Prevention Advocates Slam DeSantis for Signing Permitless Carry Bill with NRA Behind Closed Doors

Today, as Ron DeSantis signed his permitless carry bill behind closed doors with members of the NRA by his side, the Florida Democratic Party hosted a press call with gun violence prevention advocates from across the state to call him out for putting the MAGA base over the safety of Floridians’.

“DeSantis had the audacity to sign this bill behind closed doors, and with the NRA in attendance, because he knows that this legislation is not what Floridians want, it’s what he and the gun lobby want,” said Florida Democratic Party Chair Nikki Fried. “DeSantis’s anti-gun safety agenda has no place in Florida, and no place in the White House, and Florida Democrats will do everything we can to make sure that he doesn’t have that opportunity.”

“I understand why [DeSantis] hid today. I understand why [DeSantis] did not do a public announcement of your signing of this bill. Because you are a weak, pathetic, small-minded individual and you are afraid to actually face Floridians across the state who approve of my position, and everyone on this call’s position,” said Fred Guttenberg, dad and gun safety advocate. “North of 75% of Floridians did not want you to do this, but you did it anyway.”

“Governor DeSantis wasted no time quickly, but secretly signing permitless carry into law today, knowing that it will immediately decrease public safety in our state,” said Gay Valimont, a volunteer with the Florida chapter of Moms Demand Action. “[Ron DeSantis] has taken our state and the public safety of our children and used it as a vehicle to pacify gun extremists and to head his presidential campaign, and we will fight him collectively.”

“This is a very, very dark day for all of us living in the state of Florida. Today behind closed doors, Governor Ron DeSantis signed his reckless anyone-with-a-gun bill a week after three children and three adults were murdered in Nashville,”  said Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, former Congresswoman and Senior Advisor at GIFFORDS. “This law is basically going to allow anyone to carry a loaded gun in public with no background check, no training requirement, even when they have never touched a gun before. Our children and our communities are going to be less safe because Governor Ron DeSantis is in the pockets of the gun lobby and the NRA.”

“As a young person, what happened today terrifies me. We’ve seen that for the first time, gun violence has become the leading cause of death for young people.” said Robert Schentrup, Organizing Manager for the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence. “Just this morning when [DeSantis] signed this law behind closed doors, the NRA was right next to him. It’s never been more clear what this bill is about.” 

“All of us as Floridians agree: we want our families to be safe in their communities every single day. Parents want to know that Parkland is a thing of the past in Florida, and not its future. All of us agree on that. All of us want safety,” said David Hogg, co-founder of March For Our Lives. “The reality is, Ron DeSantis and a small group of gun industry insiders and the NRA have come together to subvert the majority will of the American people, including gun owners.”

Watch the full press call here.

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