How Tallahassee Beat the Gun Lobby, Florida GOP and an Ex-President Who Wanted to Erase Local Gun Controls

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(Editor’s note: Tallahassee’s Democratic Mayor Andrew Gillum is one of the leading voices in growing national fight to stop GOP-majority legislatures and governors from pre-empting progressive local laws.)

Last week, gun safety for Florida families finally prevailed over big gun lobbyists.

When I was sued by the gun lobby — a lawsuit supported by the NRA in court with personal attacks lobbed by their former national President — I knew I was in for a fight. And like most of the fights the NRA joins, this one was also against common sense gun safety.

My colleagues and I refused to repeal ordinances that prevent shooting guns in a public park. While I’m sure most responsible NRA members would support this safety measure, the right-wing gun lobby got angry. That’s because they thought they had rigged the system in their favor.

The gun lobby, like many special interests, supports something called preemption, where they spend lots of money on state lawmakers to circumvent and strip power from local government. These preemption laws can end up allowing fracking in your neighborhood, guns in public parks, discrimination, dirty water, and many other harmful developments.

Despite these odds and efforts against my city — we won. [An appeals court threw out the gun lobby suit.] And you can, too.

We didn’t back down at the threat of personal fines,…

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