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PROPOSED FLORIDA CONCEALED-CARRY BILL COULD HAVE SAVED LIVES

PHOTO CREDIT: aliengearholsters.com

[1/9/17]  Five people were killed and six more suffered gunshot wounds on Friday at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport when Esteban Santiago took out a gun he had checked from Anchorage, Alaska, loaded it in the baggage claim area’s restroom, and began shooting.

When Florida State Representative Jake Raburn (R-Lithia) learned of Friday’s shooting, he told the Sun-Sentinel, “I do personally feel like had this bill been in place already, there could have been the potential for people to protect themselves in that situation.”

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Raburn was referring to a bill, HB 6001, that he filed on November 23 that would have allowed those carrying concealed to do so in any part of the airport terminal that is outside of a “secure” area protected by metal detectors.

Raburn told the Miami Herald, “There’s always the potential — if it were allowed and there were someone in that area that had a concealed weapon — that it could have gone differently. I’m not going to say that it would have, because my understanding is we’re talking about a span of time that’s less than a minute. It may not have changed anything. But had I been there waiting to pick up my family from the airport and had it happened near me, I would have been prepared to defend myself and my family.”

State Senator Greg Steube (R-Sarasota) filed a similar bill (SB 140) on December 9, but his would also open up “gun free” zones currently in place at government meetings, schools, and colleges. Said Raburn: “While I have supported other bills that are rolled into Senator Steube’s package, this was the one that was most important to me. I carry my weapon wherever I go, but I travel a lot and it’s something I’ve thought about a lot as I have to comply with the law.”