SARASOTA — The Sarasota County Democratic Party (SCDP) denounces the recently
completed state legislative session, where a Republican supermajority failed to protect
and improve the lives of Sarasota County residents.
"Local representatives recklessly passed Ron DeSantis' extremist agenda without
attempting to improve the lives of Sarasota County's homeowners, renters, workers,
teachers, students, or seniors," said SCDP Chair Daniel Kuether.
"Where was the legislation to help homeowners with property insurance, renters facing
skyrocketing rent increases, workers forced to flee unaffordable living conditions,
underpaid teachers and funding for our public schools, and a check on unsustainable
development in our region?"
Kuether noted that the Legislature gave DeSantis several gifts, including – allowing him
to run for president without resigning, a public records exemption for his and his family's
travel records, and a $98 million increase in the Florida State Guard's budget.
The Republican-controlled Florida Legislature did pass legislation that:
● Bans access to abortion at 6 weeks
● Allows concealed weapons to be carried without a permit
● Restricts voting and voter registration in the state
● Bans books from our public schools and colleges
● Bans the funding of programs on diversity, equity, and inclusion in public institutions of higher learning
● Provides public education money for private, religious, and charter schools
● Attacks unions' ability to recruit new members
● Removes the local capacity to regulate rents but eases zoning restrictions for developers
● Doubles the maximum interest rate on consumer finance loans to 36%
● Eliminates the requirement for unanimous verdicts in death penalty cases
● Places restrictions on gender-affirming medical care
Kuether also noted that all of Sarasota's Republican legislators -- Sen. Joe Gruters and
Reps. Fiona McFarland, James Buchanan, and Michael Grant – failed the residents of
Siesta Key for a second time by not correctly championing the right for residents to hold
an incorporation vote.
"The next time Sarasota goes to the polls, we must remember how our elected officials
followed marching orders above the needs of their constituents."