Florida Democrats are looking to the ‘long game’ for rebuilding


Democrats in the Florida House and Senate gathered in the Florida Capitol after a crushing defeat in the Nov. 8 election began an attempt to bounce back.

Congress’ one-day organizing session on Tuesday featured the new Republican leader, who formally played a role in the House and Senate with a “supermajority.”

Democrats, on the other hand, hold only 35 of the 120 seats in the House and 12 of the 40 seats in the Senate.

However, Democratic leaders will be back this week as Rep. Fentris Driskel (D-Tampa) becomes the Minority Leader of the House and Senator Lauren Book (D-Davie) begins a new term as the Senate Minority Leader. , delivered a message of reconstruction. At his inauguration in the House of Commons on Monday night, Mr Driskel said political parties should “leave the last election season behind”.

“Right now, I feel that the Republican Party has a great deal of influence in our state. But they really don’t quite represent the diverse sentiments of our state. I’ve heard Democrats ask, “What happened to the Florida Democratic Party?” Some of you may be asking the same question. From my point of view, you are the party from now on. we are the parties And change starts here and now,” he says Driskell.

With Republicans holding more than two-thirds of the seats in each House, Democrats procedurally have little power to stop them from imposing their agenda. A supermajority means that even measures such as exemptions from public records that require a two-thirds vote can be passed without fear of Democratic opposition.

At Tuesday’s organizing meeting, Driskell addressed the entire House, casting Democrats as underdogs to be ignored.

“We have a lot of work ahead of us and look forward to dialogue. It’s important to understand that, despite the obvious counting of votes, it’s a minority of voices that are being heard,” Driskel said.

The organizing session included the swearing-in of Republican Palm Coast Rep. Paul Renner as House Speaker and Republican Naples Senator Kathleen Passidomo as Senate Speaker. Republicans have dominated the House and Senate since her 1990s, but this month’s election saw a larger majority.

When MPs assembled, anti-abortion protesters gathered in the rotunda on the fourth floor of the Capitol. They called on the state legislature to end abortions in Florida, chanting, “No more excuses.”

In her speech, Driskell warned of efforts to further limit access to abortions after Congress passed a 15-week limit on abortions this year. But Driskell and Book admitted the numbers were stacking up as they entered their two-year leadership tenure.

The book called the 12 Florida Senate Democrats a “dirty dozen” and described their losses during the election as requiring a “fundamental shift” to make the Democrats’ strategy effective.

“In recent months, we have been at war. The battle that began in this chamber has spilled over into Senate districts across the state. We’ve fought hard to be the voice of working people, but we’ve lost a lot,” Book, who became leader in 2021, said at a ceremony on Monday.

Senator Shevrin Jones of D-West Park said: Being down is an opportunity for Democrats. Jones suggested the road to rebuilding could be a long one.

“It’s all about the long game. What is it like and how do you get there?” Jones said at the Book ceremony.

But Book and Driskel also expressed a willingness to work with Republicans on issues plaguing the state, focusing primarily on the state’s property and casualty insurance program.

Renner congratulated Driskel on her leadership role when she indicated her priorities in a speech Tuesday.

“I also commit to minority party members to have a robust debate. I am confident that all members will demonstrate the civility and mutual respect that all voters deserve,” Renner said. I was.

Pasidomo similarly said legislators must work together on issues such as recovery from Hurricane Ian, which devastated areas including the southwestern district of Florida in September.

“Most of the issues we agree on: employee housing, environmental protection, protection of vulnerable people, respect for veterans and first responders. We assure you that we will listen to your concerns and incorporate suggestions for improving all bills,” Passidomo said.

https://www.winknews.com/2022/11/24/florida-democrats-look-to-long-game-to-rebuild/ Florida Democrats are looking to the ‘long game’ for rebuilding

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