Democrats respond to the governor’s State of the State address, Jan. 11, 2022. Credit: Imani Thomas.
With the 2022 legislative session underway, Florida Democrats have an agenda and they’re not losing sight of their goals.
Following Gov. Ron DeSantis’ State of the State address, House Democratic Leader Evan Jenne and Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book responded on behalf of Democrats with these things in mind:
The main focus is to protect Floridians’ freedom to be healthy, prosperous, and safe.
This is the session to turn things around, Book said. “Republicans have been running the show for more than 20 years and where has it gotten us?”
When it comes to health, the Democratic caucus plans to focus on affordable health care and expanding Medicaid. “Florida is one of the last 12 states still not accepting these (Medicaid) federal dollars,” Jenne said. “We could save the state billions over the long term, and provide health care for those in need.”
The caucus is planning to address the skyrocketing cost of rent and homeowner insurance in Florida — it’s at the point that people can no longer afford to live in this state, and the dream of homeownership is becoming unattainable.
In addition, “Florida’s unemployment system is a mess and an embarrassment to our state,” Jenne said. It failed at a time when hundreds of thousands of Floridians needed help.
Democrats criticized a proposed 15-week abortion ban in a bill, HB5, that was filed early Tuesday.
“We don’t need to attack women’s reproductive health; it’s not what serious legislators do,” Jenne said.