'Cowardly': With Students Present, Florida GOP Votes Down Motion to Consider Assault Rifle Ban
With survivors of last week’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting watching from the gallery, the GOP-controlled Florida House on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly against a motion to consider legislation that would “ban assault rifles and large capacity magazines”—a move critics quickly denounced as “cowardly” and further evidence that Republican lawmakers are beholden to the interests of the National Rifle Association (NRA).
“Most people would probably be ashamed to basically kill a gun control bill with teenage survivors in the room with them.”
—Luke Darby, GQ
“It was just so heartbreaking to see how many names were up there,” Sheryl Acquaroli, a junior from Stoneman Douglas, told CNN following the 36-71 party-line vote. “It seemed almost heartless how they immediately pushed the button to say no.”
According to Democratic State Rep. Kionne McGhee, the bill—which had been assigned to committees but not scheduled for a hearing—is now effectively dead, “unless the House vote[s] to remove it from the committees.”
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Here is a list of the 71 representatives who voted down the motion.
“Most people would probably be ashamed to basically kill a gun control bill with teenage survivors in the room with them,” wrote GQ‘s Luke Darby. “But shame isn’t enough of an incentive to get a legislator to flip on such a lucrative and politically useful issue. Unfortunately for them, these students are organized, angry, and soon to be voting age.”
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