Republican state Rep. Bill Hager was the only member of his party to join with Democrats to support the ban.
By Zac Anderson | Sarasota Herald-Tribune
TALLAHASSEE — Republicans in the Florida House again have rejected a proposal to ban assault weapons in the wake of a shooting at a Broward County school where 17 people were killed by a gunman wielding an AR-15.
On a mostly partly line vote — Republican state Rep. Bill Hager was the only member of his party to join with Democrats to support the ban — the House Appropriations Committee decided Tuesday against adopting the assault weapons ban as an amendment to a gun bill moving through the Legislature.
Last week the full House rejected a similar attempt by Democrats to bring legislation banning assault weapons up for debate on the House floor. And on Monday the Senate Rules Committee voted 7-6 to reject an assault weapons ban, which was proposed by a Democratic senator as an amendment to a gun bill. Sen. Anitere Flores, R-Miami, was the only Republican on the committee to vote in favor of the ban.
GOP leaders in the legislature are advancing a bill that includes more modest gun control efforts, including raising the age limit for purchasing rifles to 21 and instituting a three-day waiting period on gun purchases. The fact that Republicans are even considering gun control legislation is remarkable. The GOP-controlled Legislature has been more included to expand gun rights than restrict access to guns.
But Democrats say the GOP proposal to try and prevent more school shooting does not go far enough, and have been pushing to include an assault weapons ban in the legislation.
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