TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - In the wake of Saturday's shooting spree in Tucson, Arizona, political figures across the country say facing threats of violence has become part of the job.
Many Florida politicians say such threats are not uncommon, though few are ever acted on.
Regardless, every threat is treated seriously. Security around the state's capitol is tight, and some leaders have protection around the clock.
State senator Ronda Storms is a lightning rod for conservative issues. Last year, after voting 'yes' on a controversial bill creating merit pay for teachers, she received a threatening voicemail. It wasn't her first.
“The first time it happened to me, I got a concealed weapons permit," Sen. Storms said. "I bought a weapon, and I carry a weapon.”
In 1999, then-Speaker of the House John Thrasher received a death threat.
“It was in the form of a postcard and it had some pretty graphic language in it about what they thought they were going to do to me," Sen. Thrasher said. "They know where my children lived. And that was the real scary part.”
Visitors to Florida’s Capitol undergo rigorous security checks. Camera’s monitor doorways and hallways. Enter wearing a buttoned up coat and you’ll be asked to open it for inspection.
And if you were to walk into the capitol with a sealed envelope, police would make you leave the building, open it, and then come back in.
Inside and outside the building, the Governor and Lt. Governor are protected 24-hours a day, and it is not uncommon for legislators and other state officials to be provided with a security detail when threats are credible.
While it is uncommon for most threats to be acted on, public officials being threatened has become a part of public service at all levels of government.