At a Congressional roundtable Wednesday at the White House, Sen. Marco Rubio described the Parkland murders not as a failure of gun control, but as a “multi-systemic failure.”
“This was a multi-systemic failure,” Rubio said. “The Sheriff’s Office knew this was a problem. The FBI knew this was a problem. The Department of Children and Families knew this was a problem.”
“The big problem is they don’t talk to each other. Nobody told the others what they knew,” Rubio said, before outlining legislative remedies.
One remedy, Rubio said, is live in the House and soon to be live in the Senate: the Stop School Violence Act, sponsored by Rep. John Rutherford in the House.
“The best way to prevent these is to stop it before it starts. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t harden schools. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have debate in other areas … get on them, get them the services they need, and deny them the right to buy any gun,” Rubio said.
“I think that’s something that holds tremendous bipartisan promise,” Rubio said.
The Senator also held up Florida’s proposed reforms in the wake of Parkland as a possible example for the rest of the country.
The plan offers some moves toward gun control: restrictions of purchases by those who have been Baker Acted, as well as a ban on commercial sales to those under 21, and a “bump stock” ban. As well, $450 million for school hardening, and another $50 million for mental health, including overt cooperation between local law enforcement and the DCF.
“We can still debate some of the other things,” Rubio said, “but we owe it to the families.”
The President agreed with the Senator.