2014 ‘Champions of Florida’s Middle Class’ announced

15 Lawmakers Recognized for 100% Voting Record on Issues Impacting Florida’s Middle Class

TALLAHASSEE – Today, Progress Florida and America Votes recognized 15 members of the Florida Legislature as “Champions of Florida’s Middle Class” for their unwavering support of Florida’s working families. During the 2014 legislative session, these lawmakers voted to protect and expand the middle class in Florida 100% of the time, and championed a range of issues including stopping political interference in women’s health care, protecting our local public schools, preventing burdensome restrictions on small businesses, and protecting our land and water.

“These fifteen lawmakers deserve Floridians’ thanks for their unwavering support and leadership on the issues that matter most to middle class families,” said Progress Florida Executive Director Mark Ferrulo. “Despite stacked odds, these legislators stood up at every turn to Gov. Rick Scott and his legislative allies’ corporate campaign cash driven agenda.”

The 2014 “Champions of Florida’s Middle Class” are listed below in alphabetical order and can also be found at www.MiddleClassChamps.com:

  • Rep. Lori Berman (Boynton Beach)
  • Rep. Karen Castor Dentel (Maitland)
  • Rep. Janet Cruz (Tampa)
  • Rep. Reggie Fullwood (Jacksonville)
  • Rep. Mark S. Pafford (West Palm Beach)
  • Rep. Ricardo Rangel (Kissimmee)
  • Rep. José Javier Rodríguez (Miami)
  • Rep. Joe Saunders (Orlando)
  • Rep. Elaine J. Schwartz (Hollywood)
  • Rep. Irving "Irv" Slosberg (Delray Beach)
  • Rep. Cynthia A. Stafford (Opa Locka)
  • Rep. Perry E. Thurston, Jr. (Fort Lauderdale)
  • Rep. Victor Manuel “Vic” Torres, Jr. (Orlando)
  • Rep. James “Jim” W. Waldman (Coconut Creek)
  • Rep. Clovis Watson, Jr. (Gainesville)

“While many in the legislature chose to put partisan politics and corporate lobbyists ahead of what really matters this session, it’s nice to see that there are still lawmakers with integrity, who are willing to fight for working families,” said America Votes Florida State Director Josh Geise.

Among the votes that were considered in naming the 2014 Champions of Florida’s Middle Class were protecting Florida's public school system (SB 850), providing in-state tuition for Florida Dreamers (HB 851), voting against political interference in women's health care (HB 1047), protecting Florida's springs (SB 1576), and defending small businesses (SB 1714). The complete list of bills scored can be found at www.MiddleClassChamps.com.

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For more information, go to www.MiddleClassChamps.com.

Progress Florida is the state's largest netroots organization fighting to protect and expand Florida's middle class. Learn more at www.ProgressFlorida.org.

America Votes works with over 300 state and national partner organizations to advance progressive policies, expand access to the ballot, coordinate issue advocacy and election campaigns, and protect every American's right to vote. To learn more visit www.AmericaVotes.org.