TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - In a vote split almost completely along party lines, Florida lawmakers defeated a call for a special session to consider whether to repeal the controversial law.
The vote was prompted by a written request by 33 legislators Monday asking for the special session, following a public outcry over last month's acquittal of George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin.
A three-fifths vote, 96 votes, was needed for a special session, but by Wednesday night, more than half of the state's 160 lawmakers voted against it.
Gov. Rick Scott and Republican legislative leaders have repeatedly voiced opposition to a special session and support for "Stand Your Ground," which removes the duty to retreat for anyone using lethal force to protect themselves or property.
Every South Florida Democrat voted for the special session, and every South Florida Republican voted against.
Though Zimmerman did not explicitly include "Stand Your Ground" claims in his defense, the law was clearly mentioned in the instructions given to the jury, and one juror interviewed after the verdict confirmed the jury had discussed it.
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