Wisconsin lawmakers react to school walkouts

NOW: Wisconsin lawmakers react to school walkouts

MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The changes students are calling for in walkouts Friday have been debated in Madison for months now.

It's been almost a year since Attorney General Josh Kaul voiced his support for red flag laws during his inauguration speech in the rotunda. On Friday, he said the voices from students may be some of the strongest yet on the issue.

Kaul and the Evers administration have pushed for extreme risk protection orders -- also known as red flag laws -- and universal background checks, for months.

But opposition from republican leadership like Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald have prevented even a debate being held on the topic, much less a vote.

Both ideas have at least 80 percent support from Wisconsinites, according to Marquette University Law School polling.

Reacting to today's walkouts, Kaul believes students have the power to help advance the cause.

"One of the things that I think has really shifted the debate about common sense gun safety measures is the leadership we've seen from kids, from high school students in the wake of Parkland and events like today," said Kaul. "There are also parents who have young kids who are going through lockdown drills and some cases lockdowns, who I think have said,, you know, we've had enough of this."

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