Florida Legislature 2023

Chinese citizens file emergency motion to block FL law; say they’ll face financial harms and stigma

BY: - June 7, 2023

Attorneys for a group of Chinese citizens who live and work in Florida have filed an emergency motion in federal court to block a new law that bans Chinese nationals from purchasing property near military installations or critical infrastructure facilities. The Chinese citizens in the lawsuit say they will experience a constitutional injury, unwarranted stigma […]

Turkey, pork, bringing home the bacon: 1,540 pet projects slipped into 2023-24 state budget

BY: - June 6, 2023

When the Florida Legislature approved a $117 billion state budget in May, 1,540 local projects slipped into the massive document, from museums, soccer and football fields, and after school programs to libraries and community centers, water main projects and wastewater treatment facilities – often with big price tags. The record number of local projects, often […]

U.S. judge blocks Florida’s ban on gender-affirming care for minors

BY: - June 6, 2023

A federal judge in Tallahassee has blocked a state ban on administration of gender-affirming therapies, including puberty blockers, hormone therapies, or surgery, for any patient under the age of 18. The order also addresses legislation recently signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis (SB 254) that codifies Florida state Board of Medicine and Osteopathic Medicine rules blocking […]

Citizens in Clearwater attend town-hall to fight book bans in Florida

BY: - June 1, 2023

Allowing kids to have access to books and information is worth fighting for. That was the theme of a public teach-in on the removal of books in public schools in Florida held Wednesday night in Clearwater by the Florida Freedom to Read Project, PEN America, the League of Women Voters of North Pinellas County, and […]

Chinese immigrants sue over new FL law prohibiting them from purchasing land

BY: - May 22, 2023

Chinese citizens who live and work in Florida have filed a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a law recently signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis restricting any “foreign principal” from China or six other “countries of concern” from purchasing property in the state. The suit contends that the law, set to go into effect on […]

NAACP travel advisory on Florida provokes strong reactions

BY: - May 22, 2023

Over the weekend, when the NAACP issued a travel advisory on Florida that is “openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals,” several Black lawmakers across the state — both Democrats and Republicans — quickly spoke up on Monday. “In Ron DeSantis’ Florida, Black Americans are absolutely less safe, so it is […]

In Tampa, DeSantis declines to speak with reporters following electoral night disappointment

BY: - May 17, 2023

Gov. Ron DeSantis appeared at a bill signing event at a Christian evangelical school in Tampa on Wednesday, touting measures banning transgender minors from receiving gender-affirming care such as puberty blockers and an expansion of a law to prohibit classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity through the 8th grade. But unlike other bill-signing events […]

Ron DeSantis not ready to say that he’ll announce his presidential candidacy

BY: - May 15, 2023

Gov. Ron DeSantis would not confirm a report Monday that he is expected to announce his candidacy for president of the United States within the next two weeks. NBC News reported over the weekend that the Florida governor was set to move his political operations into a new building in Tallahassee on Monday, and that the […]

Florida Young Democrats ponder the future

BY: - May 12, 2023

Florida Democrats, who haven’t even managed yet to find someone to run against Rick Scott for re-election to the U.S. Senate next year, are finding recruitment of candidates for down-ballot races difficult, too. Their plight was made stark during an exchange at a Florida Young Democrats workshop during the state party convention in Tampa last […]

Gov. DeSantis signs the most restrictive bill on illegal immigration in the country

BY: - May 10, 2023

Gov. Ron DeSantis signed what both he and his critics agree is the strongest anti-illegal immigration bill passed by any state legislature in the country on Wednesday. Speaking in Jacksonville behind a podium with a sign reading, “Biden’s Border Crisis,” the governor blasted the president for the large influx of undocumented immigrants that has occurred […]

In Tampa, FL Democrats vent frustrations following bruising legislative session

BY: - May 8, 2023

Approximately 48 hours after the GOP-controlled Florida Legislature concluded a blockbuster legislative session that produced major conservative policy victories on abortion, immigration, public-employee unions, the death penalty, LGBTQ+ issues, and higher education, Florida Democrats gathered in Tampa for a pep rally on Sunday afternoon to revive their spirits and aim for better times ahead. “Every […]

Florida Legislature unanimously passes legislation decriminalizing fentanyl test strips

BY: - May 4, 2023

Legislation that would legalize test strips that can detect fentanyl — the synthetic opioid that has led to a massive number of drug overdoses in the U.S. in recent years — has passed the Florida Legislature. Fentanyl test strips are small pieces of paper capable of detecting whether drugs such as cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamines […]