Newsom tries to use mass shooting to score political points against DeSantis — but the truth gets in the way

Concealed Carry

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) tried on Monday to blame Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) for a mass shooting that happened in the Sunshine State.

But the attempt immediately fell flat.

What did Newsom say?

Nine people were injured when gunfire erupted on the Hollywood Oceanfront Boardwalk in south Florida on Memorial Day. Police believe the shooting stemmed from a dispute between two “groups.” It’s not immediately clear whether the shooting was gang-related.

In response, Newsom used the shooting to attack DeSantis.

“DeSantis signed a permit-less carry bill in April that removes requirements for: – background checks – instruction – training+oversight,” he tweeted.

“Until our leaders have the courage to stop bowing down to the NRA and enact common sense gun safety this kind of senseless violence will continue,” Newsom peacocked.

But is that true?

Aside from the fact that DeSantis himself could not be responsible for a shooting with which he was not involved, the legislation that Newsom cited is not yet law in Florida.

It’s true that DeSantis signed into law a bill legalizing permit-less concealed carry in Florida. However, that law does not actually take effect until July 1, 2023 — meaning Floridians still need a permit to conceal carry a firearm.

Moreover, it’s true the law that DeSantis signed does not require state-sanctioned “instruction” or “training.” However, it’s not true that Floridans will be allowed to purchase firearms without a background check. Federal law mandates that federally licensed firearms dealers must submit background checks on gun purchasers.

Even if the law had already taken effect, two of the suspected perpetrators police apprehended would have been in violation of the law because they are not at least 21 years old. The permit-less concealed carry law requires that every Floridian carrying a concealed firearm be at least 21 years old.

It’s not clear, then, what “common sense gun safety” law would have prevented Monday’s shooting. Newsom did not actually suggest any.

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