Florida GOP Candidate Announces AR-15 Giveaway In Response To Orlando

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June 21, 2016 7:53 a.m.

A week after Orlando was rocked by the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history, a Florida state senator and congressional candidate launched a contest to award a constituent with a AR-15 semiautomatic rifle.

“With terrorism incidents on the rise, both at home and abroad, protecting our constitutional rights has never been more important,” Republican state Sen. Greg Evers, who is running for the 1st Congressional District seat, said in a statement on his campaign website. “With all that’s happening in the world today, I’ve never felt stronger about the importance of the second amendment in protecting our homeland than I do now.”

Evers’ contest comes a little over a week after 49 people were killed at the Pulse gay club in Orlando by a gunman using a spinoff of the AR-15, the Sig Sauer MCX.

According to the “Homeland Defender Giveaway” rules, one randomly chosen resident of Evers’ Congressional District who has liked and shared his campaign Facebook page will receive the firearm on Independence Day. Any adult in the district can participate and the winner will be required to pass background checks.

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The GOP state senator said that the contest had been in the works for some time.

“I’ve always been a supporter of the Second Amendment. Terrorism and ISIS is a constant threat,” Evers told the Associated Press.

Evers’ campaign website prominently touts his lifetime membership in the National Rifle Association, which has given him an A+ rating for the past 14 years. He describes himself as a “fierce advocate for Second Amendment Rights” in the Florida legislature.

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