2015 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 recognized 15 members of the Florida Legislature as “Champions of Florida’s Middle Class” for their unwavering support of Florida’s working families. For the fifth year in a row, these award winners are featured at www.MiddleClassChamps.com along with the votes that earned them this distinction. 

During the 2015 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 expanding access to health care, stopping political interference in women’s access to reproductive health care, standing up for our local public schools, and opposing a budget that, among other things, failed to close Florida’s health care coverage gap or adequately fund land and water conservation as voters mandated under Amendment 1.

“We salute these fifteen lawmakers who stood up 100% of the time, on every vote, for Florida families against constant attacks from Gov. Rick Scott, his allies in the legislature, and the corporate interests that control their narrow ideological agenda,” said Progress Florida Executive Director Mark Ferrulo. 

The 2015 “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. John Cortes (Kissimmee)
  • Rep. Janet Cruz (Tampa)
  • Rep. Reggie Fullwood (Jacksonville)
  • Rep. Joseph Geller (Dania Beach)
  • Rep. Evan Jenne (Hollywood)
  • Rep. David Kerner (Palm Springs)
  • Rep. Mark S. Pafford (West Palm Beach)
  • Rep. José Javier Rodríguez (Miami)
  • Rep. Irving "Irv" Slosberg (Delray Beach)
  • Rep. Cynthia A. Stafford (Opa Locka)
  • Rep. Richard Stark (Weston)
  • Rep. Victor Manuel "Vic" Torres, Jr. (Orlando)
  • Rep. Barbara Watson (Miami Gardens)
  • Rep. Clovis Watson, Jr. (Gainesville)

“We need a growing economy that works for all, not just the wealthy, but too often our state lawmakers put corporate special interests and political expediency above the needs of everyday Floridians,” continued Ferrulo. “Today we applaud these fifteen lawmakers who, with every one of their votes this legislative session, championed the middle class and those aspiring to be in the middle class.” 

Representatives Berman, Pafford, Slosberg and Stafford have been named Champions of Florida’s Middle Class every year since the award was first given in 2011. 

High-profile votes that were considered in naming the 2015 Champions of Florida’s Middle Class included Medicaid expansion (HB 2-A), online voter registration (SB 228), the mandatory abortion delay (HB 633), protecting Florida's school system (HB 7037), the anti-gay adoption bill (HB 7111) and the budget (SB 2500-A). 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 a statewide organization fighting to protect and expand Florida's middle class. Learn more at www.ProgressFlorida.org