RPOF Newsletter – March 3, 2022

Chairman’s Message

First Lady DeSantis is Cancer Free

Today Governor Ron DeSantis announced that First Lady Casey DeSantis is cancer free, and thanked everyone for their thoughts and prayers. Our First Lady is an inspiration to us all and her courage has inspired many facing the same battle.

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Governor DeSantis liberates students from “COVID theater”

It seems there are some things only Governor DeSantis is willing to say, but we all know is true.

One of those moments came during a press conference on cybersecurity training at the University of South Florida, where several high school students were arrayed behind the Governor, and all were dutifully masked up. All of the adults were unmasked, even while these youth have all along been the least vulnerable to COVID, and with Omicron have essentially zero risk. Why were they masked?

Like he so often does, Governor DeSantis said what most common sense Americans have been thinking for a very long time. Enough already.

The Governor walked to the podium but addressed the students first: “You do not have to wear those masks. Please take them off. Honestly, it’s not doing anything. We’ve got to stop with this Covid theater. So if you wanna wear it, fine, but this is ridiculous.”

And that folks, is what the science says. There was absolutely no reason for them to be masked at their expense beyond theater for some adults. As usual, the Democrat media avoided the merits of the Governor’s point — which are unassailable — and spun it into “bullying.” Seriously. So desperate. But also as usual, they are wrong. Governor DeSantis actually was liberating the students, allowing them to breathe freely and all of us to see their faces. Their faces showed it.

It was a wonderful sight as most of them smiled broadly when they took the masks off. This is exactly the principled, evidence-based leadership that Governor DeSantis has been showing all along. And Florida and our students are better for it.

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President Trump Freedom Tour hits Florida

For one historic day, the American Freedom Tour is coming to Florida March 19 at FLA Live Arena in Fort Lauderdale! It’s time for conservatives to get motivated and defend freedom.

The American Freedom tour will be in Fort Lauderdale. Come see President Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Candace Owens, Dan Bongino, Sarah Huckabee Sanders and many, many more live and in person. Get your tickets now. This is a historic, must-attend event featuring America’s top insiders and influencers. Register today. Build important relationships, help promote a conservative agenda and protect America’s future.

To register: https://americanfreedomtour.com/events/244/gop

FLORIDA

Florida launches cybersecurity and IT training expansions

Governor DeSantis announced $20 million for cybersecurity and IT training opportunities while visiting Cyber Florida — the Florida Center for Cybersecurity at the University of South Florida.

Starting next week, the University of South Florida will use the money to begin coordinating three regional partnerships to develop workforce education clusters in cybersecurity for middle school, high school and college students. Last school year, nearly 143,000 Florida middle and high school students were enrolled in career and technical education programs that accelerate cybersecurity and IT pathways.

“This funding will not only create opportunities for Floridians seeking jobs in this important field but will also improve our national defense, protect Floridians and their businesses, and maintain the integrity of our elections,” Governor DeSantis said. “By doubling available opportunities in this field, Florida continues to lead.”

In 2019, Governor DeSantis set the goal of making Florida the number one state in the nation for workforce education by 2030. So far, Florida has invested over $3.5 billion to expand workforce education and training programs in the state. Globally, the shortage of cybersecurity professionals is estimated to be about 2.7 million. In Florida, there are an estimated 22,000 unfilled cybersecurity-related jobs. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that cybersecurity employment growth will be around 31 percent over the next few years, with average median wages around $104,000 annually.

Read more: https://www.flgov.com/2022/03/02/governor-ron-desantis-announces-20-million-to-create-cybersecurity-and-information-technology-workforce-education-opportunities/

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Florida provides $7.1 million to help with tornado recovery

Governor Ron DeSantis announced the availability of more than $7.1 million in funding and resources to help families recovering from the impacts of recent tornadoes in Southwest Florida on January 6. The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity has also sent people to Charlotte and Lee counties to help homeowners in need.

Following the federal government’s denial of Florida’s request to provide assistance to individuals impacted by the tornadoes, Governor DeSantis and the Florida Division of Emergency Management launched a donation portal to provide immediate relief for disaster survivors impacted by the tornadoes. The donation portal is available at FloridaDisaster.org/Assistance.

“Victims of these tornadoes in Southwest Florida deserve assistance to kickstart their recovery process,” Governor DeSantis. “Despite the Biden Administration’s failure to help Floridians in need, I will continue working with state agencies to find ways that we can assist our residents who have been devastated by these tornadoes.”

Read more: https://www.flgov.com/2022/03/01/governor-ron-desantis-announces-over-7-1-million-available-to-floridians-impacted-by-southwest-florida-tornadoes/

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$4.4 million for Southeast Florida rural infrastructure

Governor DeSantis announced more than $4.4 million for communities in Southeast Florida to build and improve rural infrastructure.

Indian River County will use the money to attract new industry opportunities to the Headwaters Commerce Park. Broward County will use the funding to increase internet accessibility and provide rental assistance to residents. Monroe County will use funds to make improvements to a community waterfront park that will be a multi-use location.

“By connecting Floridians with the resources they need to create jobs, support new talent, and help businesses to stay open and grow, we are supporting Florida’s economic resiliency,” Governor DeSantis said. “I will continue seeking strategic approaches to long-term opportunity for all Floridians.”

Read more: https://www.flgov.com/2022/02/28/governor-ron-desantis-announces-more-than-4-4-million-in-funding-to-southeast-florida-communities-through-deos-rural-infrastructure-fund-community-development-block-grant-programs/

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Senator Rubio comes on strong at CPAC

Senator Marco Rubio released a new video with highlights from his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando last week. Here’s one such highlight:

“There are people that perhaps have never voted the same way any of you have in a presidential race. And they’re really angry. And they’re getting rid of school board members because they’re coming for their kids. And they’re getting rid of local government officials because they’re coming for their business. And they’ll get rid of federal leaders that are coming for their freedom.”

Watch Senator Rubio CPAC highlights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61QXo_JJST4

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AG Moody leads 26 other states in Supreme Court fight for religious freedom

Leading 26 other states, Attorney General Moody is urging the Supreme Court of the United States to reverse the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling on Joseph A. Kennedy v. Bremerton School District.

In this case, the Ninth Circuit failed to uphold the constitutional rights of a high school coach who was punished for praying alone on a football field in view of students.

“High school coaches, like other government employees, do not check their constitutional rights at the door when they agree to pursue a career of public service,” AG Moody said. “We should be encouraging people of faith to pursue noble careers educating and coaching our youth.”

The amicus brief argues that:

  • Contrary to the Ninth Circuit’s opinion, Supreme Court precedents do not hold that a public employee’s private speech, like Coach Kennedy’s private prayer, is exempt from First Amendment protection;
  • Allowing the school district to justify its discriminatory actions under the Establishment Clause not only conflicts with settled constitutional principles, but it also creates problems for both public employers and employees; and
  • The Ninth Circuit’s curtailment of First Amendment liberties is detrimental to public service. Private religious expression and public service can and must coexist.

Read more: http://www.myfloridalegal.com/newsrel.nsf/newsreleases/D8A56E1453E04297852587F90078F04D

Read the amicus brief: http://myfloridalegal.com/webfiles.nsf/WF/GPEY-CC5TKD/$file/21-418+tsac+Arizona.pdf

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CFO and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis Honors Urban Search & Rescue Task Forces 1 and 2 During “Year of the US&R”

Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis honored members of Florida’s Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) Task Forces 1 and 2 during a ceremony in Miami as a part of his “Year of the US&R” statewide tour.

Following the tragic Surfside Condo Collapse, CFO Patronis fought to secure $10 million in funding for equipment and training to support Florida’s dedicated US&R task forces. CFO Patronis was joined by members of the Florida fire service community, the Florida Professional Firefighters, the Florida Fire Chiefs Association and elected officials to honor members of US&R Task Forces 1 and 2 with Surfside Memorial Challenge Coins. The CFO distributed nearly 160 challenge coins to US&R Task Forces 1 and 2.

“It was an honor to be in Miami today and recognize the brave men and women of Florida’s US&R Task Forces 1 and 2. I saw the work of God when hundreds of Florida’s Urban Search & Rescue Team members fought, and kept fighting, for any hopes of life,” CFO Patronis said. “They worked 12 hour shifts in the Miami summer, cutting rebar, cutting concrete, filling 5-gallon buckets of debris, hand-by-hand. These men and women battled fire, they battled rain, they battled the heat. Their boots and gloves were destroyed. On that mound of rubble, I saw hell on Earth. But I also saw God’s presence in the men and women that fought with every ounce of their being to save lives.”

“As the State Fire Marshal, I felt compelled to do something to honor these heroes for everything they sacrificed,” he said. “In today’s ceremony, we honored them with a challenge coin and a ribbon for them to wear on their uniform. The challenge coin represents respect, unity and courage, values that Florida firefighters live by. It is my hope that these coins are passed on through generations of their children, and their children, and their children, so that everyone knows that heroes walk amongst us.”

IMPORTANT REMINDER: You have the ability to greatly expand the beliefs and ideas of the Republican Party of Florida by sharing out Facebook and Twitter posts. Please follow and retweet us on Twitter @FloridaGOP, and like and share us on Facebook at FloridaGOP. We can win over others only if we all pitch in to reach them with our message.

ICYMI

Press Release from Republican Party of Florida:

Lockdown Adam Hattersley is not for Florida

While CFO Jimmy Patronis has fought alongside Governor Ron DeSantis to keep Florida open and free, Democrat candidate for Florida’s CFO, Adam Hattersley, advocated for lockdowns and mandates like the mandatory masking of children and closing beaches and businesses.

Adam Hattersley has opposed Governor DeSantis at every turn and supports draconian mandates. He is not a friend to our hard-working business community. If you have a family, run a business, work for a business or love that Florida is free and open, you aren’t going to like Lockdown Adam.

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More ethics issues for Val Demings

An ethics complaint says Val Demings inappropriately used taxpayer dollars by sending a campaign-style mailer outside her district.

The Washington Free Beacon has the story:

House Dems Block Investigation Into Dem Senate Candidate

Democratic leadership in the House is shutting down an investigation into illegal use of taxpayer funds by Rep. Val Demings (D., Fla.), who was caught abusing mailing privileges as she runs in a high-profile statewide race.

The Washington Free Beacon has learned that the bipartisan House Communications Standards Commission last month opened an investigation into Demings following a complaint that she sent a 12-page, campaign-style mailer to Floridians outside her district. The Democratic chairwoman of the commission, Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (Pa.), told her Republican colleagues in a letter obtained by the Free Beacon that she does “not believe that further inquiry is warranted” and on Tuesday will vote against investigating the matter further. Her vote against further action will effectively end the investigation.

Following the commission’s initial investigation of the complaint, Demings in a three-page letter from attorneys at Elias Law Group, obtained by the Free Beacon, admitted that the mailings went outside her district. The firm was founded by longtime Democratic operative Marc Elias. Scanlon’s campaign also employed Elias for “legal services,” having paid his previous law firm thousands of dollars since 2019.

“This is just the latest example of Democrats twisting rules, process, and precedent to cover up the violation of a member,” a senior congressional aide with knowledge of the matter told the Free Beacon. “On top of that, the involvement of a partisan attorney like Marc Elias, who simultaneously represents the chair of the Commission, only further raises issues of a conflict of interest. This was a valid complaint filed with the Commission and a clear-cut violation of the rules, yet the Democrat members of the Commission are not only moving towards dismissing the complaint but are actively blocking any attempts to further look into the matter.”

Read more: https://freebeacon.com/democrats/house-dems-block-investigation-into-dem-senate-candidate/

Social Media Highlights

REMEMBER: @FloridaGOP and retweet and share. The Republican message must be spread around the state, and you are integral to making that happen.