FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 29, 2021
Contact: Damien Filer / 850-212-1858 / Damien@ProgressFlorida.org
TALLAHASSEE – Progress Florida and Florida Watch today unveiled the 2021 “People First” Report Card grading lawmakers on many of the most prominent floor votes cast during the 2021 legislative session. The grades took into account votes across a wide spectrum of issues including affordable housing, health care, public schools, voting rights, reproductive freedom, and clean energy and water.
The “People First” Report Card grades every state legislator on key floor votes cast in their respective chambers – 27 votes in the House and 29 in the Senate. To achieve an A, lawmakers had to consistently vote to put “People First.” The report card provides Floridians a valuable tool for discerning if their representatives in Tallahassee are fighting to put people first, or powerful special interests.
“With Florida battling a health and financial crisis it’s more important than ever to know how our legislators are voting on major issues that impact our lives,” said Progress Florida Executive Director Mark Ferrulo. “The ‘People First’ Report Card provides a great tool for making that assessment.”
“Too often in Florida, legislators bow to the wishes of large corporations and special interests instead of doing what’s best for everyday people,” stated Florida Watch Executive Director Josh Weierbach. “We encourage all Floridians to use the ‘People First’ Report Card as a resource to find out who in Tallahassee truly has their backs.”
Among the high-profile votes factored into lawmaker grades were the anti-voter initiative bills to silence Florida voters, including anti-first amendment and peaceful protest (HB 1); anti-clean energy (HB 919/SB 1128); cutting affordable housing (HB 5401 /SB 2512); an abortion ban (HB 1221); attacking Bright Futures scholarships (SB 86), and bills that raid the pocketbooks of Floridians to give handouts to large corporations (SB50, SB 76, HB 337), among many others. The complete list of bills scored can be found at www.FloridaReportCard.com.
Listed below are the six state legislators (all House members) who earned a “People’s Champion” Award for their 100% voting records.
Rep. Ben Diamond (D-St. Petersburg)
“It’s great to see these legislators putting ‘People First’ with their votes,” said Ferrulo. “We are proud to recognize these lawmakers who fought for Florida families with every major vote cast this past session.”
“We’ve all heard politicians make the case they are working on behalf of everyday Floridians, but this scorecard shows which ones are actually getting it done with their votes,” added Weierbach.
The interactive 2021 Progress Florida “People First” Report Card can be viewed at www.FloridaReportCard.com.
Florida House and Senate Members Earning an “A” on the “People First” Report Card
Sen. Loranne Ausley (D-Tallahassee)
Rep. Joe Geller (D-Dania Beach)
For more information, go to www.FloridaReportCard.com.
Progress Florida is a statewide organization fighting to build a more progressive Florida. Learn more at www.ProgressFlorida.org
Florida Watch is a communications and research organization dedicated to holding the powerful accountable. Learn more at www.FloridaWatch.org.