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Florida Officials and NRA Reluctant to Go to Court-Ordered Mediation

Friday, June, 26, 2020


The NRA and officials in Florida have asked that an order to mediate a 2018 lawsuit be dropped. The lawsuit was filed in the challenge of a state law preventing people under 21 from purchasing a firearm.


The ban was part of a law passed in February 2018 following the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. The law raised the age for purchasing rifles and shotguns from 18 to 21. According to federal law, a person must be over 21 to purchase a handgun from a licensed firearms dealer. The Florida law also expanded that national law regarding handguns to include private sellers.


The NRA claimed the ban was unconstitutional under the Second Amendment. Florida Attorney General Ashley Mood argued that the law did not violate Second Amendment rights because individuals over the age of 18 could still use firearms, they just could not purchase them.


US District Judge Mark Walker required the NRA and Florida to submit a mediation report by the end of July and schedule a trial date for January 2021. However, lawyers for the NRA and the state have now asked Judge Walker to allow them to forego mediation because both sides see it as “fruitless” and called their differences “no reconcilable.” Both agree there is no middle ground and they share the belief that the case is not conducive to good faith mediation.


It did not take long for Judge Walker to respond to the request to forego mediation. He granted the request writing, “this court finds good cause has been shown why the mediation requirement should be waived.”