Following a narrow vote in the Florida Senate, the House voted late Monday to send the legislation to Gov. Rick Scott. In addition, the passing of the bill would see the establishment of new mental health programs in schools.
Almost four dozen Democratic amendments, including banning assault weapons, creating a registry for guns, allowing local governments to pass stronger gun laws, requiring background checks for gun purchases outside of the state and prohibiting the sale and transfer of large-capacity magazines, were rejected.
RICHARD CORCORAN: We put together, jointly with the Senate, a proposal that will ensure it never happens again.
Lauren Book (right) embraces Sen. "But I also support the fact, that if this bill pass, we're doing more for the mental health of our students than we have ever done and that's commendable". Surviving students and gun-control supporters have scheduled a march and rally in Washington and other cities March 24 to urge new gun laws.
One amendment adopted at the last-minute on Monday bars classroom teachers from participating in an armed school staff program that is part of the bill.
The Florida State Senate has passed a bill raising the legal age to buy a firearm from 18 to 21 years.
State senators Monday voted to exempt students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School from having to take the annual reading, writing and math tests given each spring to most students in the state. "They've been shouting it into their ears writing letters, talking to congress and senate alike and frankly I can't believe they haven't heard yet", Deitsch said.
"I also said when there's a fire already burning, you don't add more fuel to it", Gibson said.
Senator Audrey Gibson said, "Some of us who are all about true safety and not arming teachers or any other personnel that would be inside of a classroom". They remind us they are here, present, they matter, they are children, they want to be safe, they will take positive action. "But, the Governor will review the final bill before he makes a decision", she said. "In my experience, eventually some pro-gun legislator in (Tallahassee) will decide that enough school boards didn't pass this arming teachers program, and they'll step up and make legislation to make it mandatory".
Hoyer, speaking to reporters, also called for votes on assault weapon restrictions, broader gun-sale background checks and banning "bump stocks" that can increase the firing capacity of a weapon. It will be one of those areas that we will be able to look back and say we did something.
It was no accident both passed on the same day since the measures were championed by the two Republican leaders of the Legislature and their fates had been intertwined all session.