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Marion Hammer has Turned Florida into the “Gunshine” State

Feb. 22, 2017
by Bob Adelmann

Since the late 1970s, Marion Hammer has lobbied for the NRA in Florida, galvanizing gun owners into a fearsome force favoring the Second Amendment. The media claims she engineered the change from “may issue” to “shall issue” for obtaining concealed carry permits to the point where today one in every 14 Floridians has one. It claims she’s also responsible for passage of the “stand your ground” law that has served as a model for the majority of other states that has adopted it.

She has also garnered the opprobrium of anti-gunners like Tom Diaz, who was forced to give her some credit in his book, The Last Gun: How Changes in the Gun Industry Are Killing Americans and What It Will Take to Stop It. Wrote Diaz:

Throughout her career, Hammer has been portrayed as something of a cross between a chain-smoking bulldog and a steely-eyed, uncompromising drill sergeant….

For decades, this “good ol’ boy in a skirt” has lashed Florida’s legislators – Democrat and Republican, urban and rural alike – into impotent compliance while she rams the most bizarre and deadly “gun rights” laws imaginable through the halls of Florida’s capitol in Tallahassee.

But without the backing of thousands of gun owners who learned that their rights were being threatened, and their subsequent political action and pressure on their state legislators, she wouldn’t even rate a footnote in Florida’s history.

The strategy she employed is simplicity itself. David Cole, a law professor at Georgetown University Law Center, explained it:

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