The following letter to the editor appeared in The Daily Sun on June 27, 2022.
Our Florida representatives in Congress, Matt Gaetz and Greg Steube voted against a bill to get the country out of the baby formula crisis. It seems they only vote to protect the unborn. After the school shootings in Texas, the only thing we hear from Republican elected officials is the need to address mental health.
This sudden desire to address mental health issues is the height of hypocrisy. Both Republican Governors Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis refused to expand Medicaid in Florida. Medicaid gives low-income people mental health assistance, far better than Medicare. But DeSantis has no interest in helping the poor because the poor don’t vote – well, they don’t vote for him.
Continuing with the hypocrisy, DeSantis has decided to remove Florida from a survey of public-school students that measures such things as – mental health! The data helped the state advocate for the underserved and vulnerable children.
These elected officials choose to address mental health when it’s convenient – for the Republican Party. If legislation or programs will aid the poor and disadvantaged, that party has no interest. Addressing mental health when it comes to mass killings is a common trick of the party to change the conversation about what we really need to do — stop the sale of military-style rifles and high-capacity magazines.
Republican leadership has become anti-family, destructive and un-American.
Linda DeMeritt, Port Charlotte