The following article, Watch: DeSantis Makes Ultimate Point Against 'Red Flag' Gun Laws in Discussing Maine Shooter, was first published on Flag And Cross.
Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida cautioned in the wake of two mass shootings in Maine that “red flag” laws, if enacted, would result in the disarming of people the federal government considers its enemies.
Last week, police say, 40-year-old Robert Card opened fire at two locations in Lewiston, Maine, wounding dozens of people and killing 18 others.
Card’s body was found late Friday night after a two-day statewide manhunt.
In the wake of the slayings, many on the left have called for everything from banning firearms to instituting so-called red flag laws, which allow the courts to disarm people if those around them express fears they might be dangerous.
On Sunday’s edition of “Meet the Press” on NBC News, DeSantis was asked about the violence in Maine by host Kristen Welker.
First, Welker asked the 2024 GOP presidential contender if he agreed with a statement House Speaker Mike Johnson had made about the murders in Maine.
“At the end of the day, the problem is the human heart, it’s not guns,” Johnson said.
“I think this was a very tragic thing,” DeSantis responded, calling the shootings “horrific.”
“He clearly had problems,” the Florida governor said of Card while he noted the man was institutionalized over the summer after he reportedly threatened to go on a killing spree.
The institutionalization should have gone on Card’s background just as something such as a violent criminal conviction would have, DeSantis noted.
He then argued that pushing for red flag laws while ignoring the fact that Card’s hospitalization should have prevented him from buying the gun police say he used to carry out last week’s violence accomplishes nothing but potentially disarming peaceful, law-abiding citizens.
Welker said she believed a red flag law would have stopped Card from buying his gun.
DeSantis disagreed and said extreme measures such as allowing mere accusations to disarm people did not need to be taken.
A system to prevent those who have expressed plans to kill innocent people is already in place, he argued.
“I don’t think you’d even need a red flag,” the governor said. “If somebody has a mental involuntary commitment, an adjudication of that nature, that usually would go into the system and that would be on a traditional background check.”
“I believe in due process,” the governor said.
“I believe in strong constitutional rights,” he said, “but with that comes responsibility, and if you’re somebody that can’t conduct themselves in society because of mental illness, then that absolutely should be taken into account.”
DeSantis concluded he had issues with red flag laws in states that are run by Democrats and said the federal background check system needs to include mental health hospitalizations.
“Here’s the problem I have with some of the proposals that have been done, particularly in some of the blue states, is that will be weaponized against people that the government doesn’t like,” he said.
“I mean, you have a situation where someone can just make an anonymous call into a police station, let’s say, say something bad about someone and then they come in and take firearms?” the governor said.
DeSantis also called on institutionalizing more people who he said have proven they are too mentally ill to participate in society.
“When you have an involuntary commitment, that triggers things to go into a background check system,” he said.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.