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Andrew Gillum calls Adam Putnam ‘recent convert’ to gun rights movement

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Following the Tampa Bay Times story questioning Republican gubernatorial candidate Adam Putnam‘s past visibility on gun rights issues, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum is calling him “a recent convert” and questioning his commitments on details.

“Now that people have started to catch on that Commissioner Adam Putnam’s a recent convert to the gun rights movement, we should ask him how he really feels,” the Tallahassee mayor asked about the state agriculture commissioner.

Gillum is seeking the Democratic nomination for the 2018 election, facing Winter Park developer Chris King and Tallahassee former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham.

In the past couple of weeks, Putnam has turned up the heat on his rhetoric about guns, making his support of the gun rights movement as much of a focal point of his campaign as virtually any other issue to date. On July 18 he declared he saw a pathway to open-carry of guns in Florida, and to guns on college campuses, and later declared himself proud to be an “NRA sell-out.”

But Monday, the Times published an article in which several gun rights advocates essentially asked of Putnam, “Where have you been?” reporting that several times earlier this year when asked about gun issues he deferred or offered noncommittal responses.

So, Gillum asked in a news release issued by his campaign, what doe she think?

“Does he really think it’s a good idea for our college students to carry weapons on campuses? Does he support an assault weapons ban and closing gun show loopholes?” Gillum asked.

“I know where I stand: against campus carry, for an assault weapons ban, and for closing gun show loopholes. I’ve proudly stood up to the NRA and the gun lobby to make sure we protect Florida’s families, and I hope Commissioner Putnam says the same thing.”

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Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at scott@floridapolitics.com.

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