Florida lawmakers open latest debate over mass killings

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida lawmakers are again wading into the contentious issue of gun violence, amid a national debate over gun control deepens ahead of next year's elections.

Mass shootings earlier this summer in Texas and Ohio killed 31 people and again plunged the nation into a debate over how to address gun violence.

A legislative committee in Florida on Monday convened criminologists, law enforcement and mental health experts to help frame a debate that will stretch into next year.

Florida Republicans appear focused on mental health and in condemning white nationalism, which appeared to have played a role in Texas. Meanwhile, Democrats want broader restrictions on access to guns in a state considered among the country's gun-friendliest.

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