Florida House Democrats met with reporters Wednesday to say they don't want to turn Thursday’s Stand Your Ground hearing into a publicity stunt.
The House Criminal Justice Subcommittee will take up a bill by Democratic state Representative Alan Williams. The measure would repeal the 2005 Florida law that says people don't have to retreat in a situation where they fear for their lives.
Prompted by a national outcry over George Zimmerman's acquittal this summer in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, a Florida Senate committee gave approval Tuesday to minor changes in the state's "stand your ground" law.
But whether a Legislature dominated by gun-loving lawmakers will ultimately sign off on a bipartisan compromise remains a long shot, despite a seemingly indifferent National Rifle Association, which helped write Florida's first-in-the-nation law.
The Florida Secretary of State's office will begin polling members of the Legislature to find out if there is enough support to hold a special session to decide the fate of the state's controversial "stand your ground" law.
The calls to boycott Florida grew louder and more widespread on Friday after Gov. Rick Scott reiterated his support for the broad self-defense law that was key to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin case.
Scott told demonstrators occupying the state capitol on Thursday that he will not submit the Stand Your Ground law to a special legislative session for revisions despite demands by activists, elected leaders and at least one prosecutor earlier in the day.
Not guilty. That was the verdict reached Saturday night by an all-female jury in the George Zimmerman trial. Reaction to the decision in South Florida, like the rest of the country, has ranged from shock and anger to relief.
State Senator Chris Smith (D-Fort Lauderdale), a strong proponent of changing Stand Your Ground, says constituencies outside of South Florida are particularly opposed to any conversation about amending the law or gun control regulations.