DeSantis was accused of favoring insurance industry donors at residents’ expense.Ron DeSantis

Republican Right-Wing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Possibly 2024 Presidential Candidatehanded his big money donors in the insurance industry a favor at the expense of his state’s cash-strapped residents, a new report claims.

report, “How Ron DeSantis Sold A Florida Homeowner”draw contributions from Federation of American Teachers unions, non-profit organizations Popular Democracy Centervoting group florida rising And the watchdog of Yamikin hedge clipper.

The report identifies the insurance industry as a key underwriter in DeSantis’ surge to the governor’s mansion. Potential White House Candidate – and claims that this may have influenced his decision-making.

DeSantis, who had a successful re-election campaign last year, Friend of Ron DeSantisThe Political Action Committee that backed him raised a total of $3.9 million in donations from insurance industry insiders. Add in contributions to the Florida Republican Party since January 1, 2019 (just days before DeSantis took office), and this total balloons to over his $9.9 million.

The author’s analysis of campaign finance data also found that two P&C insurance companies donated a total of $125,000 to DeSantis. 2023 Inauguration CeremonyIt marked the beginning of his final term as governor with a limited term.

It’s no coincidence that the DeSantis administration put the interests of insurance companies ahead of the interests of Florida citizens, the report’s authors suggest.

they wrote: “Instead of solving the problems of Florida’s property and casualty insurance industry, DeSantis has generously provided the industry with goodwill and benefits during the daily struggles of Florida citizens.”

These benefits include the creation of a $2 billion taxpayer-funded reinsurance fund. Such funds exist to insure insurance companies and prevent them from wiping out in the event of a catastrophic event. Insurance companies typically purchase such coverage on the open market, but in Florida, DeSantis chose to use tax dollars to provide access to state-subsidized insurance funds.

Second, the Florida legislature passed a bill that strips policyholders of their ability to recover attorney fees when suing an insurer that refuses to honor a valid claim. was trumpeted on his official web page.

home contents insurance hot button problem In Florida, communities vulnerable to the climate crisis are facing increasingly frequent and severe hurricanes and other weather events. Last year, Hurricane Ian caused record levels of property damage, and recent storms flooded parts of Fort Lauderdale for more than a week.

The report states: Cities in Florida such as Jacksonville (where 1 in 3 of her residents are black) and Orlando (where 1 in 3 are Latino), based on the number of properties at high risk of climate change, It is the country with the highest risk. ”

For many, it’s getting worse. Premiums are expected to rise by an average of 40% this year, according to the. Insurance Information AssociationAccording to industry analyst John Rawlins, this follows a reported 50% rise during the DeSantis administration. The increase has forced Florida homeowners to pay nearly double the national premium or quit the state altogether.

Tracy Ann Brown, 53, called from Miami. Our insurance went up to $1,800 a month and my husband’s salary combined with mine I couldn’t afford it. Unfortunately, our house caught fire on Easter Sunday and we didn’t have insurance.

Brown, a public school community liaison specialist, adds: I asked many people and they said the same thing. Their insurance has become very expensive. ”

The report Florida Department of Insurance Regulation It is dominated by industry insiders who have approved premium hikes at a rate higher than seen under previous governors.

“There is growing evidence that large insurers have blocked proposals to cut costs for consumers,” it continues. “A 2022 proposal by State Senator Jeff Brandes would cut insurance by giving smaller insurers access to a devastating reinsurance fund that would cost Floridians “750 million a year. The plan was reportedly thwarted by insurance-minded business lobbies. ”

In contrast to Louisiana, the authors note a stronger non-life insurance market despite similar hurricane risks. They argue that, unlike DeSantis’ insurance industry handout, Louisiana conditions subsidies to the insurance industry based on increased participation in the state’s property insurance market.

“Floods, hurricanes, and other natural disasters threaten Floridians, and homeowners are increasingly at risk of losing everything,” said Randy Weingarten, president of the Federation of American Teachers. , because they can’t afford to pay burgeoning insurance premiums.”

She added: Given the choice of helping working families in Florida or making an insurance lobby bid, Ron DeSantis We put donors first. This report joins the dots. We cannot allow DeSantis to destroy the lives of millions of Floridians for corporate gain. ”

DeSantis has yet to officially announce its 2024 campaign, but plans to do so after Florida’s legislative session ends later this month. Meanwhile, he traveled to early voting states to promote his new book, met with donors, and just returned home. foreign trade missions.

The governor has also been embroiled in a legal battle with Disney. It was submitted by members of the Disney World Steering Committee, which was composed. lawsuit to counterclaim entertainment giant.

CBS News-YouGov poll Data released Monday showed former President Donald Trump leading the hypothetical Republican primary with 58% of the vote, followed by DeSantis with 22% of the vote.

The governor’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/may/03/ron-desantis-insurance-industry-donors-florida-governor DeSantis was accused of favoring insurance industry donors at residents’ expense.Ron DeSantis

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