Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Makes Florida A Permitless Carry State
A bill allowing individuals to carry concealed firearms without a permit was signed into law by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis on Monday.
The governor's office confirmed DeSantis' signing in this press release:
Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed House Bill (HB) 543 which strengthens Floridians' Second Amendment rights by allowing Floridians to carry concealed weapons without a government-issued permit. HB 543 goes into effect on July 1, 2023, making Florida the 26th state to enact Constitutional Carry legislation.
"Constitutional Carry is in the books," said Governor Ron DeSantis.
After July 1, concealed carry permits will no longer be required. The measure has received criticism from gun control supporters. Those against the bill have expressed concerns that permitting individuals to carry concealed firearms in public without training and eliminating an extra background check requirement may be disastrous.
Meanwhile, Second Amendment advocates, such as the bill's sponsor, and State Rep. Chuck Brannan, R-Macclenny, said:
"This bill is a big step, a big step to help the average law-abiding citizen, to keep them from having to go through the hoops of getting a permit from the government to carry their weapon.
"It is also not going to change who can and who cannot carry a gun. People that are prohibited now are still going to be prohibited."
However, Luis Valdes, the Florida director of Gun Owners of America, told Tampa Bay Times the bill is a move in the right direction. He said, "permitless concealed carry is a good thing. But it's not constitutional carry that we were promised."
The legislation was approved with a 76-32 vote in the House and a 27-13 vote in the Senate, with most of the votes following party lines. The majority of amendments proposed by Democrats were unsuccessful.
"This doesn't change you into James Bond with a license to kill," Carey Baker, owner of A.W. Peterson Gun Shop in Mt. Dora and former state lawmaker, told local media outlet Welsh 2.