In an op-ed published by USA Today, the Mayor of Tallahassee with 11 other mayors demanded state lawmakers “get out of the way.” The mayors write:
Keeping our people safe is our highest responsibility. If our residents don’t feel safe — safe at school, safe in parks, safe at work, safe at home — nothing else matters.
As mayors, we’re elected to take on big challenges. Infrastructure and public works, water quality and energy efficiency, law enforcement and civil rights, and making our cities competitive in the 21st century economy.
Atop that list should be smart, common-sense local firearms laws that keep guns out of the wrong hands, keep guns out of public spaces, and keep the threat of gun violence and mass shootings at bay.
There’s no doubt about the need for thoughtful new gun ordinances. Mayors across the country are ready to pass them, enhancing public safety in our cities.
But we can’t — because our states have banned us from enacting local gun laws.
Forty-three states have some form of gun preemption, a tactic increasingly used by state legislators to prevent cities and counties from making local laws and decisions. States are interfering in local efforts to raise wages, pass paid sick time and non-discrimination ordinances, and adopt fracking and environmental regulations. Lawmakers are using preemption to overturn elections, perpetuate racial and economic inequality, and silence local voices.
It’s happening in your state. And it’s happening because lobbyists and special interests know it’s easier to influence a few state lawmakers in 50 state capitols than thousands of local mayors and city councils.
Nearly everywhere gun violence can happen, local leaders are blocked from taking action to help prevent it, And as recently highlighted by the Campaign to Defend Local Solutions, the consequences of defying the state can be grave.
In Pennsylvania, local governments can’t pass gun laws more restrictive than the state’s. In Tennessee, the gun lobby and special interest groups can sue local officialsfor passing gun ordinances. In Florida, should councilmembers dare pass local gun laws, they can be fined and removed from office by the governor. And in Kentucky, your mayor can be jailed for up to a year — just for voting for a local firearm regulation.
So there you gun liberal mayors now want to buck the constitution to enact their agenda. I mean we have a great example look how great Chicago is.