Quotes from Conservative Leaders in Favor of ‘Red Flag’ Laws

“We need to stop dangerous people before they act, so Congress should provide funding for states to adopt risk protection orders. This can help prevent violent behavior before it turns into a tragedy. These laws allow a court to intervene and temporarily remove firearms when a person threatens violence to themselves or others.”

Chris Cox, Executive Director of the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action, in a March 12, 2018 video on the NRA YouTube channel.

“President Trump’s Administration is calling on every State to adopt Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs). The President is directing the Department of Justice to provide technical assistance to States, at their request, on establishing and implementing ERPOs. ERPOs allow law enforcement, with approval from a court, to remove firearms from individuals who are a demonstrated threat to themselves or others and temporarily to prevent individuals from purchasing new firearms. ERPOs should be carefully tailored to ensure the due process rights of law-abiding citizens are protected.”

White House fact sheet titled “President Donald J. Trump is Taking Immediate Actions to Secure our Schools,” issued on March 12, 2018.


“We can never replace the 17 lives that were lost at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and we can never erase the traumatic experience that lives on in the memories of those who survived this horrific attack. However, we will do everything we can to address the failure of government to effectively address the numerous warning signs that should have identified the perpetrator as a danger to others. We can and we will increase the resources available to identify and treat those suffering from mental illness, improve the safety and security of our schools, and ensure those suffering from mental illness do not have access to firearms.”

Florida Senate President Joe Negron (R) explaining his support for a Florida bill establishing an Extreme Risk Protection Order in a March 5, 2018 press release.

“I think, among the things that we could do after Parkland, one of the most effective is a gun violence restraining order. Basically, the police or a family member who thinks someone is dangerous can go to court. They can get a court order, and they can take that person’s guns away and keep them from buying new ones. Florida has already passed it. Five other states are already passing it. And now we’re putting out there a law to try to get all the other states in the country to do the same thing, so you can find these people and you can take away their guns before they kill anybody.”

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) in a video statement released on March 22, 2018 introducing his bipartisan, federal “Red Flag” bill.

“[The Parkland shooter] did everything but take an ad out in the paper and say ‘I’m gonna kill people. Wouldn’t it have been nice if somebody could have grabbed this man and said `What are you up to?’ and take every gun he had … and get him some help before it was too late?”

US Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) said in a March 8, 2018 news briefing explaining his federal Extreme Risk Protection Order bill.

“If a person makes documented threats to others or himself or herself, a petition can be made, a judge reviews the evidence and the extreme risk protective order is either granted or denied… I believe this is a common-sense approach that respects a person’s constitutional rights and still maintains public safety. ”

Utah State Rep. Steve Handy (R-UT) explaining his motivation for sponsoring an Extreme Risk Protection Order bill in an op-ed published on March 5, 2018 in the Standard-Examiner.

“Gun-violence restraining orders (GVROs) make us all safer while empowering the individual and protecting liberty…

What if, however, there was an evidence-based process for temporarily denying a troubled person access to guns? What if this process empowered family members and others close to a potential shooter, allowing them to ‘do something’ after they ‘see something’ and ‘say something’? I’ve written that the best line of defense against mass shootings is an empowered, vigilant citizenry. There is a method that has the potential to empower citizens even more, when it’s carefully and properly implemented. It’s called a gun-violence restraining order, or GVRO.”

David French published an article in the National Review on February 16, 2018 titled, “A Gun-Control Measure Conservatives Should Consider.” French is a senior fellow at the National Review Institute and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom

“I want every student in every school, every mom and dad, every victim of violence – in any form – to know today, we stand together as we take a step towards making our communities safer, for all of us. With S.221 [Vermont’s ‘Red Flag’ bill], we’ll provide Vermonters with a lifesaving tool to help reduce gun tragedies, such as suicides or murders.”

Vermont Republican Governor Phil Scott in a public address after signing an Extreme Risk Protection Order bill on April 11, 2018.

“Indiana’s ‘Red Flag Law’ is a common-sense measure that in no way inhibits the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens.”

Republican Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill Jr. in a February 21, 2018 press release publicizing Indiana’s “Red Flag” law established in 2005 following the 2004 slaying of Indianapolis Police Officer Jake Laird by a man known to be a threat by police.