LGBTQ PAC focused on gun safety reform endorses candidate in United States Senate Race in Florida

August 8, 2018 -- Washington, DC -- Pride Fund to End Gun Violence – America’s only national LGBTQ political organization focused solely on gun violence prevention – announced its endorsement of Democratic Senator Bill Nelson for re-election to the U.S. Senate. Pride Fund endorsed Nelson for his commitment to fighting for LGBTQ equality and his support of commonsense gun safety measures.

“Gun violence in America is a public health crisis that Florida is all too familiar with since the Pulse massacre and the Parkland shooting,” said Pride Fund Founder and Executive Director, Jason Lindsay. “In November, voters will make a critical decision between a Democrat who will stand on the side of gun safety or a Republican who will inevitably side with the National Rifle Association (NRA). Senator Nelson is a critical leader in the fight to pass gun safety measures, and we’re proud to endorse him for re-election to ensure that his voice and votes continue to be heard in the Capitol,” said Lindsay.  

"It's an honor to earn the support of the Pride Fund, a group focused on ending gun violence and I will continue to work with them and their allies and families in Florida to pass commonsense gun reform," Senator Bill Nelson said. “In Florida, we know all too well the consequences of gun violence after the shootings at Pulse and in Parkland. Inaction is not an option and we will continue to work together to support commonsense reform to make our communities -- our schools, churches, clubs, homes and workplaces -- safer for all Floridians,” said Nelson.

Senator Nelson is a longstanding ally to the LGBTQ community and an outspoken leader in the fight to pass commonsense gun laws. In 2010, he voted in favor of repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and in 2013 publicly announced his support for same-sex marriage. Throughout his 17 years as a U.S. Senator, Nelson has advocated for an assault weapons ban, a large-capacity magazine ban, and a bump stock ban. Nelson has strongly supported measures to close the gun show loophole and increase the efficacy and scope of background checks. Following the Pulse nightclub shooting, Nelson advocated for the “No Fly, No Buy Act of 2009,” a bill prohibiting the sale of firearms to suspected terrorists like the Pulse shooter.

Senator Nelson’s Republican opponent, Florida Governor Rick Scott, would endanger communities across the country with his dangerous position on guns. Scott proudly touts his A+ rating from the NRA and has never truly spoken for the people of Florida. After Parkland, he ignored Floridians’ calls for an assault weapons ban and other lifesaving measures, which demonstrated his allegiance to the NRA over the demands of a threatened public.

Rick Scott has failed in his duty to keep Floridians safe from gun violence and has continuously shown his loyalty to the NRA. In 2011, Scott signed preemptive legislation that prohibited localities from regulating firearms and ammunition, forcing Florida cities and counties to allow guns in parks, hospitals, and government buildings. Scott also cut the cost of a concealed weapons permit three times during his administration. Following the Pulse massacre, where 49 individuals were killed and 53 others were injured, Scott refused to talk about gun safety measures. Scott further disrespected the victims and their families by refusing to wear a Pulse ribbon that thousands of Floridians were wearing in memory of the victims.

Rick Scott has been a cheerleader for the NRA and a nonexistent voice for Florida’s LGBTQ community. After two of the top 10 mass shootings in US history happened in Florida, Scott took no action on gun reform until he decided to run for the Senate. Only then did he push for minor reforms. Florida deserves a senator who will champion LGBTQ equality and stand up to the NRA, which is why Pride Fund is proud to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Senator Bill Nelson in his re-election campaign.