Adam Putnam, Florida’s pro-gun Commissioner of Agriculture and gubernatorial candidate, says he has a problem with stripping the gun rights from adults under age 21.
Putnam, who literally puts gun rights first on his platform and has long a history of supporting carry rights, told Fox 13 he would not have signed the controversial school security and gun control package approved by Republican Gov. Rick Scott last week because it raised the threshold age for longarm sales to 21 across the Sunshine State.
“I don’t believe that is the right approach,” Putnam said, echoing a position he has maintained during the measure’s brief legislative history.
“As someone who grew up in possession of firearms, learning a respect for firearms and practicing the safe use of firearms as part of my heritage, I can’t support any policy or any law that destroys the family tradition of possessing and practicing safe use of firearms,” Putnam said previously. “I can’t imagine that a state that has done so much to encourage youth hunter safety would outlaw the purchase of any and all firearms by someone under 21.”
As Ag Commissioner since 2010, the former GOP state representative and later Congressman has overseen Florida’s concealed carry licensing program for nearly a decade. In that time, he has moved to expedite licenses for those in the military, helped usher in a reduction in costs as well as an online renewal process. Since declaring his intention to move into Florida’s governor’s mansion last year he has also been a vocal advocate for open carry and campus carry, two practices that have been repeatedly rejected in the state’s legislature.
Scott, expected to make a bid for the Senate, signed SB 7026 over protests from both Florida Democrats and the NRA, the latter of which filed a lawsuit against the state citing Second Amendment concerns due to the removal of gun rights for those under 21.