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TALLAHASSEE (CNN) — The National Rifle Association is criticizing Florida’s Republican House Speaker Richard Corcoran for his comments lauding the passage of gun control legislation and accusing him of “betrayal.”
“Speaker of the House Richard Corcoran (R) is adding insult to injury by calling the betrayal of law-abiding firearms owners ‘one of the greatest Second Amendment victories we’ve ever had,'” NRA lobbyist Marion Hammer wrote in an email Monday to NRA members.
“Corcoran tried to justify his betrayal by claiming the provision in the bill to arm school employees makes it ‘one of the greatest Second Amendment victories we’ve ever had’ because it ends ‘gun free zones on school campuses’,” Hammer said in her email, referring to Corcoran’s comments in an interview with the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
“That is complete nonsense and ignores the unconstitutional gun control included in the bill,” Hammer wrote.
Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott signed the “Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act” (SB 7026) into law earlier this month, making it the first legislation enacted in Florida since the Parkland school shooting on February 14. The law includes a provision that raises the minimum age to purchase a firearm from 18 to 21, which the NRA filed a federal lawsuit opposing. It also bans the sale of bump stocks and enforces a three-day waiting period for most gun purchases.
Corcoran’s office declined to comment.
In an interview last month with CNN’s John Berman, Corcoran said the Florida legislature would pass gun legislation “come hell or high water.”
When asked if he was concerned about the NRA’s opposition to raising the age limit, Corcoran said, “I’m a member of the NRA. I’m an ‘A’-rated legislator in the NRA. I’m a concealed weapons carry permit holder, I have six children, I don’t care what any special interest thinks.”
“What I care about is protecting every single school child so that what occurred never happens again,” he said, adding, “I don’t care who comes against us.”
Hammer reached out to members last month to pressure the Florida Republican leaders — Corcoran, Scott and the Florida Senate President Joe Negron — to oppose gun control measures.
This Saturday thousands of people are expect to take part in the March For Our Lives rally in the nation’s capital to call for common sense federal gun reform. Protests have been spreading around the nation since a teen with an assault rifle killed 17 people at Parkland’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine’s Day.
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