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FL Governor Ron DeSantis Calls For Constitutional Carry. Why Has The Republican Legislature Blocked It?

Ron DeSantis
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

March 3, 2022: Governor Ron DeSantis, while at a press event in Panama City, was questioned by a reporter on the status of Constitutional Carry law in Florida. The governor’s response was simple . . .

“Put it on my desk; I’ll sign it.”

But it hasn’t been sent to his desk. The Florida legislature, under Republican supermajority, has not advanced constitutional carry at all this session nor has it advanced constitutional carry since it was first introduced in the legislature three years ago. Among the other gun rights bills the Republican-controlled legislature hasn’t advanced are campus carry, open carry, and Second Amendment sanctuary.

All they have done is let them die on the vine in committees. Not a single vote.

Earlier this session, Rep. Mcihele Salzman (R) openly stated why it was not advancing.

The Republican legislative leadership was against it, so she wouldn’t support constitutional carry as a “professional courtesy” to her bosses in the capitol. Apparently the idea of giving her constituents a professional courtesy by advancing their Second Amendment rights is too much to ask.

Sadly, though, she isn’t the only one.

Rep. Chuck Brannan (R) literally ran away from answering the question of why Constitutional Carry hasn’t been brought up for a vote.

As if running away from questions wasn’t bad enough, his office trashed Floridians’ Constitutional Carry petitions back on February 22.

This is unacceptable. The Republican governor is now openly calling for it, the people are asking for it, and the legislature is blocking it.

Constitutional carry in Florida isn’t some kind of zany, harebrained scheme hatched by a radical fringe group. It’s supported across the state on a grassroots level and has gained more grassroots support every day. And it’s already the law in 21 other states.

A total of twelve county-level, Florida Republican parties support constitutional carry. Some of them represent major urban areas . . .

Miami-Dade County
Hamilton County
Suwannee County
St. Johns County
Seminole County
Marion County
Manatee County
Lake County
Indian River County
Hillsborough County
Gulf County
Bay County

Additionally, six major lobbying groups that aren’t traditionally associated with gun rights are supporting FL Constitutional Carry.

Florida Federation of Young Republicans
Republican Liberty Caucus if Florida
Republican Liberty Caucus of Greater Melrose
Republican national Hispanic Assembly of Florida
New Tampa Republian Club
Florida Republican Assembly

As campaign season starts for the August primaries you will see many of these same lawmakers who are smothering constitutional carry proclaiming how pro-gun they are. And they’ll try to hide the fact that they continue to kill constitutional carry’s progress in Florida.

Enough is enough. Floridians demand Constitutional Carry. If the Republican legislative leadership is the roadblock, maybe it’s time to primary them come August.


Luis Valdes is the Florida Director of Gun Owners of America.


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