TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School arrived in the Florida Capitol ahead of Wednesday's news conference and rally calling for a ban on assault weapons.
The students will meet with lawmakers throughout the morning, prior to the noon event. News4Jax's Vic Micolucci will be in Tallahassee covering the event and will be reporting live beginning on The Morning Show.
Hundreds of students from Tallahassee joined by a few state legislators gathered outside Leon High School to welcome 100 students from the South Florida high school to Tallahassee.
“We’re just here to show as much love and support as we can,” said Kellen Long, a senior at Leon High School.
Earlier in the day the Florida House rejected a move to hear the proposal, with 71 members voting against. It brought Stoneman Douglas junior Sheryl Acquaroli to tears.
“It’s too much. Those are 70 murderers,” Acquaroli said.
Students say they're not giving up without a fight.
"I don't have the luxury to dispute that. Im a student, I have to go to school. And if they tell me that I have to, then I will. But I don't think there is a single one of us that will go back to school and feel comfortable," said Rebecca Schneid.
Earlier Tuesday, Gov. Rick Scott held a roundtable with law enforcement education leaders and mental health experts looking for ways to protect students. There was no mention of banning assault weapons at the governor's meeting.
When asked if he would consider a ban, Scott said, "All options are on the table."
For now, it seems the governor’s focus is on preventing the mentally ill from obtaining firearms, and increasing communication between law enforcement, mental health professionals and schools.
“Can you measure it to make sure it happens? I mean, in business, that’s what you have to do," Scott said. "You have to measure constantly what you’re doing. So as I try to think through these proposals, is it going to change something? Is it really going to move the needle and make something happen?"
Scott said a proposal will be ready by Friday, leaving two weeks in the legislative session to move it through both chambers.
Students will be joined by many other groups including the Florida Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence, Broward Teachers Union, Equality Florida, and Captain Mark Kelly whose wife, former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords survived a mass shooting in 2011.
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