AG candidate promises immediate action on gun violence if elected

Rep. Steve Shaw (R-FL) says task force would be first action


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Rep. Sean Shaw (D-FL) says if he's elected attorney general, his first action would be to establish a task force to prevent gun violence.

"Eradicating the type of violence that resulted in the lives of Floridians being cut too short at places such as the Pulse Night Club, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the Clearwater convenience store," said Shaw.

The task force, which would be comprised of legislators, law enforcement and others, would travel the state and make policy recommendations. It would have between 60 and 90 days to submit a report.

"This is going to take a concerted effort -- a holistic approach, and I believe Florida is worth that effort," said Shaw.

A similar task force was established by Gov. Rick Scott in 2012 to look at the state's "stand your ground" law. Reverend R.B. Holmes was the vice chair.

"We have to do something about this 'stand your ground' law, and I think the next attorney general ought to be the one to kind of talk about this very forthrightly and transparently," said Holmes.

Ryan Torrens, Shaw's opponent in the Democratic primary, responded to Shaw's announcement saying in a statement, 

I am the only candidate in this race who would not defend the 'stand your ground' law? This is an unconstitutional license to kill, and I will not defend it in the courts.

Shaw explained how he would handle "stand your ground" if elected.

"That will be one of my number one priorities, to get that law repealed," said Shaw. "We have to convince the Legislature to repeal that law."

But that would likely prove an uphill battle in the Republican led Legislature.

Ashley Moody, a Republican attorney general candidate, responded to Shaw's announcement saying in a statement, 

My politician Democratic opponent who has plenty of experience in running political campaigns has never prosecuted a case, led investigations, or taken one gun away from criminals who pose a danger to our community. His 'solution' is more gun control laws, which will only take guns away from law abiding citizens.

An attempt to reach out to candidate Frank White went unanswered.