Group Pushing for Florida ‘Assault Weapons’ Ban Hits 100,000 Signatures, Headed for State Supreme Court

One of the groups David Hogg helps lead is pushing for an AWB in Florida (Photo: BAWN Youtube)

A gun control group pushing to ban “assault weapons” in Florida has garnered more than 100,000 signatures for its cause and triggered a review by the Florida Supreme Court. If the group gets 766,200 by February, the ban will become one of the potential constitutional amendments on the 2020 ballot.

The group, creatively titled Ban Assault Weapons Now! (BAWN), is “confident” they can gain enough signatures to get the measure on the ballot by the deadline, according to the Miami Herald.

“Hundreds of thousands of Floridians across the state are getting behind this effort to place a ban on the ballot, because they know that this isn’t a partisan issue — this is an issue of public safety,” BAWN Chairwoman Gail Schwartz, the aunt of slain Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Alex Schachter, said in a statement.

The amendment on the petition would ban possession of “assault weapons,” defined “as semiautomatic rifles and shotguns capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition at once, either in fixed or detachable magazine, or any other ammunition-feeding device.”

SEE ALSO: Florida Resource Officer Arrested for Inaction During Parkland Shooting

The measure excludes handguns, and it exempts all firearms owned before the date the ban becomes effective. But it also requires any of those grandfathered rifles and shotguns to be registered with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement within one year of the ban’s effective date. Gun owners must provide a sworn statement that they owned the firearm before the effective date and provide the firearm’s make, model, and serial number. Law enforcement is required to keep a permanent record of the firearms registered.

In order for the measure to become part of the Florida constitution, it must garner 60 percent of the vote.

Leaders of Ban Assault Weapons Now! include former Parkland student David Hogg, Florida Congressman Ted Deutch, and several survivors and parents of survivors of mass murders. Partner organizations include the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and March for Our Lives.

SEE ALSO: Florida Gov. DeSantis Signs Bill to Arm Teachers

BAWN produced a video that appears on the home page of its website, right above a request for donations. The unlisted video has been viewed a grand total of 746 times on YouTube and repeats the same talking points used by most gun ban advocates.

“These are weapons of war, military style weapons that, frankly, were not meant to be in the hands of civilians,” says Dr. Joseph Sakran, a trauma surgeon who appears in a BAWN video. “These are wounds we should never be seeing.”

“Banning assault weapons is not going to stop every mass shooting, but if we prevent even one shooting, it is worth it,” says another woman who appears in the video.

Gun control advocates in Washington State used the same ballot tactic last year to impose a slate of gun control measures without the legislature’s approval. Garnering 60 percent of the vote, I-1639 banned the sale of semiautomatic rifles to adults under the age of 21, created a registry of gun owners, established a 10-day waiting period for certain purchases, held gun owners liable for failing to secure firearms, and allowed the state to charge a $25 fee on the sale of “assault rifles.”

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About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at

{ 37 comments… add one }
  • Raymond Gleaton Jr. January 8, 2021, 12:44 pm

    How about anyone that commits a felony with a gun and is convicted, gets an automatic 5 years in prison !! Oh wait, isn’t that the law now ?? Unfortunately, the lawyers get involved, from both sides and plead the charges down to misdemeanors, which defeats the purpose !! Then, anyone that kills a person, while they are armed with a gun and convicted, they get fast-tracked to the gas chamber !! No more sitting on death row for 20 years !!

  • Andy Leeper July 4, 2020, 5:46 pm

    Didn’t St John’s University do a recent study that concluded there wasn’t any correlation between a ban on semiautomatic rifles and a reduction in mass shootings or violent crime. I’ve lived in Florida since 1971 and it has become more and more liberal so this doesn’t surprise me. What is so scary is how ignorant people are about AR15s. I own 6 and no I don’t need all of them but the last time I checked the 2nd Amendment didn’t limit our right to own a firearm on someone else’s perception of what I “need”.

    I hope the NRA challenges the wording of the question on the ballot.

  • Pat August 10, 2019, 6:10 pm

    I doubt any member of BAWN knows much about guns. Remington 1100 have aftermarket tube extension to hold 10 standard 2 3/4 cartridges. 12 gauge mini cartridge would allow over 10 shots.

  • Ejharb July 3, 2019, 8:51 am

    He is a product of the government schools we permit to create such cretins.for the future of our hopefully more liberty minded kids to deal other words WE EFFED UP!

  • Trixterminator June 18, 2019, 10:54 am

    Wow, power to the sheeple….and these liberal trash are still selling ice in Alaska during deep winter. Amazing people are dumb enough to keep buying the bs. They’ll have their reward

  • Deon Oldguy June 16, 2019, 1:21 pm

    That would be just about EVERY semiautomatic rifle – think Ruger 10-22.

  • Joe June 15, 2019, 5:41 pm

    Let’s not forget who’s really at fault here, the Parkland shooting could have been prevented had the idiot cops would had done their job. Months before the retard went out on a shooting rampage, the cops responded to a serious allegation by one of the neighbors, who had taken a video of the idiot pointing a gun towards her. What did the cop do? They filed an incident report, but never took any proper action, never took the retard’s gun(s) away. And let’s not even talk about the coward of a cop who went and took cover and never made any attempt to go in and take down the shooter. And yes I too agree that we have to do something to make sure that mentally ill/incapacitated individuals don’t have access to guns.

  • Joe June 15, 2019, 5:34 pm

    Why aren’t we collecting signatures as pro gun owners to go against these gun hating liberals?

  • John Boutwell June 15, 2019, 8:48 am

    It would make far more sense to put this energy into improvements mental health that is where the problem has always been.

    • Donald Cline June 15, 2019, 11:41 am

      We can start with assessing the mental health of these twits advocating for a Police State.

  • David Welsh June 14, 2019, 8:17 pm

    “These are weapons of war.” Well, no. Even if they were, the 2e guarantees that we have the right and duty to throws off a tyrranous government, which has true weapons of war. Liberals are weapons against our Republic!

  • Todd June 14, 2019, 7:56 pm

    I see A LOT of terrible boating accidents occurring in Florida soon.

    Maybe during gator hunting or something similar.

  • Michael J June 14, 2019, 7:16 pm

    Only 100,000? Just about anything can get put on a ballot if you have a foaming at the mouth mob pushing it. The big question is, are these all signatures actually living registered voters? How about just registering only the guns used by criminals since they’re the only ones breaking the laws?

  • Winston June 14, 2019, 2:38 pm

    Alleged Parkland ‘shooter’ Nikolus Cruz still does not have a trial date in the state of FL. Why not? The evidence against him is sealed as it is with all US ‘mass shootings’ since Columbine. Why is this? The corrupt US press does not even ask this question. Is lack of evidence a problem, and or is there a similarity about all of these cases that is being kept from the Public?

  • The Millionth Counsel June 14, 2019, 9:54 am

    Sit at home on election day and this is what you get.

  • Johnny Five June 14, 2019, 9:19 am

    Time and demographics are on their side. Pro-Second Amendment Whites and anti-Communist Cubans are either moving away from Florida or dying out. The new generations are a product of our dumb-down public school system and Leftist institutions of higher dumb-down.

    New Yorkers, Chicagoans, and Commifornia types are moving here by the thousands every month bringing their liberal political activist views. Other Caribbean, Central and South American Hispanics, who are drawn like a moth to the flame of welfare and entitlements, are also coming by the tens of thousands and favor the party of government and welfare, the Demoncrats.

    This is why Florida has gone from solid Red to Purple and will be Blue. There is also serious money from the likes of Soros, Bloomberg and others, financing the anti-Second Amendment movement. Pro-Second Amendment working folks don’t have the time, drive or financial backing to engage in preventing what is coming. Only three choices are coming:

    1. Make a stand and go out in a blaze of glory when they come for your guns.

    2. Hide your guns and tell them you sold them all over two years ago as records are then non-binding.

    3. Move to a gun friendly state.

    • No1hunter June 14, 2019, 1:09 pm

      “New Yorkers, Chicagoans, and Commifornia types are moving here by the thousands every month bringing their liberal political activist views.”

      That is what happened to WA State. The cesspool west of the Cascades filled up with Kalliphoney idiots wanting to get away from the Kaliphoney BS and ended up making it just like home! That is why there is a movement to divide the state – to get out from under the control of the TRUE deplorables!

  • mikeb June 14, 2019, 8:48 am

    By their criteria, a Marlin Model 60 would be banned. Idiots.

  • Ds June 14, 2019, 8:27 am

    The gun banning group includes Norm Braman (Braman Automotive Group), Brian Mast (Republican Member of Congress, FL 18), Former Ambassador Al Hoffman (Republican Fund Raiser), Patricia Brigham (League of Women Voters), David Hogg (Parkland High School) and numerous other Parkland Families who blame you for the actions of a murderer and the failure of law enforcement.

    • Dr Motown June 14, 2019, 8:57 am

      Brian Mast was eviscerated last year by Clay Martin, and solicits funds with pictures of his war injury. He is NO friend of the 2A, despite his military service. Folks in his district need to wake up and stop giving him sympathy votes

  • Jay June 14, 2019, 7:28 am

    More people die from drowning, do they ban swimming pools, more die from auto accidents do they ban cars, more die from alcohol related death do they ban booze, more die from medical malpractice do they ban Doctors? The fear mongering and PC is beyond out of control. Maybe we need to subject all these people to mental health checks before signing some thing like this as the fear of inanimate objects is not normal!

  • Jason Perry June 14, 2019, 6:15 am

    WHy is it that our Enumerated Constitutionally protected Right to Arms is ALWAYS subject to “ballot initiatives” and popular votes? This is pure BS. Instead of banning stuff, which CRIMINALS WILL NOT be affected by, how about allowing people to defend themselves and get rid fo these stupid “Gun Free Zones” where ALL of these killings take place?

  • borecrazy June 14, 2019, 3:50 am

    How can anyone justify proposing a ban on assault weapons that are NOT really assault weapons? How can they even use false terminology in the bill and deny they are not being honest about the law?If a group started calling automobiles “Anti-Personnel Vehicles” because some were used by crazy people to mow down civilians, could they get enough signatures to get a ban on the ballot. Many people do not know the difference, they just follow like sheep and sign the petition!

    • Jason Perry June 14, 2019, 6:18 am

      Am not advocating, but the terminology does not matter; it is what is defined in the bill. They could be called garden spigots. YEs, we all know that “assault weapon” is a politically made up term and the functionality is totally different from the AR-15/Semi-Auto rifles. But the they are banning what they are defining….not what they are calling it.

  • Jaque June 13, 2019, 9:53 pm

    Its on!y a matter of time before a communist governor and communist legislature exist together. Same with the federal govt. A Communist president and Congress together will pass laws effectively nullifying the 2nd Amendment Its going to happen Next year or in ten years And if Americans fail to resist and revolt then kiss our Republic goodbye . Florida is my home and every one I know wii resist such Tyranny. As New Yorkers escape to Florida they bring their anti gun votes.

    • Sirreg June 14, 2019, 7:46 am

      Not all New Yorkers are anti-gun.

      • Todd June 14, 2019, 8:04 pm

        Your not really PRO Gun either……otherwise you would move or politically fight.

  • Sepp W June 12, 2019, 6:42 pm

    “The amendment on the petition would ban possession of “assault weapons,” defined “as semiautomatic rifles and shotguns capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition at once, either in fixed or detachable magazine, or any other ammunition-feeding device.”

    They make magazines that hold less than 10 cartridges. If they’re only concern is “public safety” which it is not, then they should propose to ban magazines of a specified capacity.

    “These are weapons of war, military style weapons that, frankly, were not meant to be in the hands of civilians,” says Dr. Joseph Sakran, a trauma surgeon who appears in a BAWN video. “These are wounds we should never be seeing.”

    What he’s trying to say is we’d rather see patients and victims of a violent crime come in the skulls bashed in with crowbar, throat slit ear to ear, or completely disemboweled.

    Again this all a guise to disarm the citizenry by any means possible.

    • borecrazy June 14, 2019, 4:05 am

      They use an incorrect name for an item that doesn’t comply with the true definition of Assault weapons. Then they list a false set of criteria that will sound like it describes an assault weapon to those who do not know that much about guns. It still does not make what they want to ban an assault weapon, and it is a sneaky, unscrupulous way to get signatures! They should not be allowed to put the bill on a ballot unless the wording is clarified! And they should not be allowed to mislead the people by calling them “the same weapons of destruction that military’s use”! I call on everyone that knows better to get in their face and correct them everytime you hear these purposely misleading descriptions!

  • ro June 12, 2019, 11:55 am

    in beginning (around 2:31)…sounded like automatic weapons fire….not AR fire…this while everyone is explaining the pop or the bang (singular)….very deceptive

  • SuperG June 12, 2019, 11:18 am

    Of the 100,000 signatures they have now, I wonder how many are valid? A lot of times they use fake names, take signatures from illegal aliens, and minors. We’ve been demonizing guns for decades and passing laws, yet no laws have stopped shootings. There is a two-fold reason for this. First, laws are designed to punish after the fact and not prevent. Second, inanimate objects have to be abused by someone to be dangerous, and these laws ignore that fact. It isn’t lost on me that after Ronald Reagan relaxed the mental health laws and closed the institutions, that violence in this country went up.

    • Dan June 14, 2019, 7:34 am

      I also wonder how many or few of those signatures are valid, and how or IF are they validated?
      I highly doubt that all signatures are validated, which makes any ballot initiative that passes on signatures alone a total scam. That is probably why they chose that method for this, since that is the only way it could pass. Without Legislature approval, it does not amend the State constitution, so it is not even a real law.
      More fakery.

  • Dilligaf June 12, 2019, 1:56 am

    Mini Hitler hogg is pure cancer for America

  • randy June 11, 2019, 10:59 pm

    good luck Hoggboy. try to ban my AR and you will start a civil war in Florida. Im sure you will be on the first plane to Commiefornia before the first shot is fired.

  • Robert Smith June 11, 2019, 9:09 pm

    This could backfire big time on the Dems. It will drive turnout for pro-gun voters who tend to be Republican. Enough to tip the state for Trump.

    • Jason Perry June 14, 2019, 6:13 am

      The re-election of Trump, in this case would not matter. It is a Florida issue. Even if Trump wins, if there is 60%+ votes for this initiative, it passes.

  • Ray Williams June 11, 2019, 4:27 pm

    So the Marlin Model 60 would be considered an Assault Weapon! Morons.

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