Minority Office — Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 25, 2023
STATEMENT: Senator Tracie Davis and Senator Geraldine Thompson Respond to the Governor Signing SB 7050, the Elections Bill
Yesterday, the Governor signed SB 7050: Elections. The bill, among other things, impacts voter engagement groups that sign Floridians up to vote, gives more requirements to local Supervisors of Elections on verifying voter eligibility and clarifies that the Governor can run for President without having to resign.
In response to the bill being signed, several members of the Senate Democratic Caucus shared these statements:
Senator Tracie Davis (D-Jacksonville) said, “It really is a tragedy to see a civil right used as a chess piece for one man’s ambition. In 2020, this Governor touted Florida’s election process as the “gold standard.” However, in less than three years he has made sweeping changes by creating confusion, disorder, and intimidation for Florida voters and all 67 Supervisors of Elections. This bill fixes nothing, and could severely limit the voice of the people. Pulling out of ERIC and then putting this bill on our desk is nothing short of a complete crippling of the elections system in Florida. The people who will feel these effects are returning citizens, working class citizens, and middle class families. His need to use this bill to exclusively benefit himself makes his lack of confidence apparent, and is a slap in the face to the people whose rights this tears away. The Senate sponsor said that, before this bill, it’s actually hard NOT to vote in Florida, so why are we making it that way?”
Senator Geraldine Thompson (D-Orlando) said, “SB 7050 eliminates rules for Ron DeSantis that other Florida elected officials have to live by when it comes to being required to resign from a current office if they seek to run for a different one. DeSantis does not have to resign as Governor to run for President. By signing this bill into law, the Governor clearly shows that he believes the rules are for thee and not for me. He convinced the Republican-controlled legislature to put $16 million of taxpayer funds into the budget for litigation to defend his unjustifiable actions. The bill simultaneously targets black and brown people—individuals he has already devalued—by making it more difficult for them to be a part of American democracy through joining the voting rolls.”