[Tallahassee] – Governor Ron DeSantis continued his efforts to waste taxpayer money on lawsuits to further his political ambitions. Members of the House Democratic Caucus issued the following statements:
“Unfortunately, this is another political distraction from Governor DeSantis, who seems more focused on fighting President Biden than in fighting COVID-19. Removing Florida from participating in OSHA is an expensive distraction that will cost us millions of dollars, take years to complete, and will likely be denied because Florida cannot simply opt out of worker protections. The GOP leadership knows this isn’t a quick process, so they’re either saying that this isn’t about COVID, or they’re telling us that COVID will be around for years to come,” said Leader Designate Ramon Alexander (D- Tallahassee).
Policy Chair Representative Fentrice Driskell (D- Tampa) added, “Governor DeSantis is once again playing politics and putting his political ambitions above what’s best for Florida. We are all ready to be done with COVID-19, and we all know the best way out is by as many people as possible getting the vaccine. Yet, Ron DeSantis continues to promote stunts like this that only put Florida’s health and economy at risk. The Governor mentioned how this is a “division in our society,” but he’s led the charge in making this vaccine as divisive as possible. Places like Puerto Rico, where political parties did not make the vaccine political, have the best vaccination rate among any place in America and they’ve saved countless lives in the process. The majority of people support efforts to end this pandemic, from individuals to businesses to local governments. Vaccines have never been this political before, and nearly every person in Florida has received many immunizations that were required to go to school and not be a danger to others. Florida doesn’t want to return to a time when preventable communicable diseases run rampant through our state.
The cost to our people and our economy is too great to risk. The Governor should drop this divisive plan and focus on the real issues facing Floridians. For example, our lack of affordable housing, skyrocketing property insurance rates, polluted waters, crumbling infrastructure, or lack of affordable health care. Floridians deserve a government that fights for their freedom to be healthy, prosperous, and safe.”
“The governor continuously fails to communicate the public health necessity of vaccines to the state and is now creating more obstacles and politicizing guidance from experts at OSHA. It is imperative elected leaders take a proactive role in finally ending this pandemic. Diverting valuable time that we as lawmakers could use to create effective legislation. The governor is using taxpayer money and time to mislead and endanger workers lives while causing rifts in the business community,” said Representative Joy Goff-Marcil (D- Maitland).