Florida’s ban on ex-felons voting is unconstitutional and biased, federal judge rules

“Rick Scott has been irresponsibly denying former felons their civil rights for years — and it’s appalling to learn that appealing to Scott’s political party gives former felons a greater chance of getting their right to vote back,” said American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp. “The right to vote is the most sacred part of our Democracy, and Rick Scott’s partisan bias is a sign of just how corrupt and self-serving this governor really is.”


The Washington Post: Florida’s ban on ex-felons voting is unconstitutional and biased, federal judge rules

By Derek Hawkins | February 2, 2018

“In a blistering decision that could impact the 2018 midterm elections, a federal judge on Thursday ruled that Florida’s system for barring former felons from voting is unconstitutional and potentially tainted by racial, political or religious bias.”

“U.S. District Judge Mark Walker blasted the state panel led by Florida’s governor that decides whether to restore voting rights to people who have completed […]

Read more after the jump.

Scott Appoints Unqualified Flunky To Run Florida’s Emergency Management 

“Rick Scott only looks out for himself and his cronies, giving well-paying taxpayer-funded jobs to unqualified political allies. Rick Scott’s decision to hire permanently a 29-year-old former campaign flunky irresponsible and dangerous,” said American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp. “When disaster strikes, who wants this kid coming to their rescue?”

Politico Florida: Scott quietly appoints controversial choice to lead state emergency management
By Bruce Ritchie | January 31, 2018

“Gov Rick Scott has quietly appointed Wes Maul as state emergency management director after receiving criticism in September for the interim appointment.”
“Maul, 29, worked at the Division of Emergency Management and was a scheduling assistant to the governor from 2013-16, and prior to that worked at a mattress store in Gainesville.”
“Scott appointed Maul on Dec. 13 to be emergency management director, a position within the governor’s office that does not require Senate confirmation, said Lauren Schenone, a Scott spokeswoman. The position pays $140,000 a year.”
“‘Gov. […]

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DeSantis is No Hero To Sexual Harassment Victims

Today, Congressman Ron DeSantis announced his campaign for Governor of Florida. The Trump-loving candidate touted his record in Congress, bragging about his bill that would eliminate the Congressional fund used to deal with harassment complaints against Members of Congress.

[See a video of his words here.]

But don’t let DeSantis convince you he’s always been there for victims of sexual harassment. Because he hasn’t. In 2013, DeSantis voted to deny SNAP benefits to women who quit their jobs – even if they quit due to sexual harassment.

American Bridge spokesperson Lizzy Price made the following statement:

“Ron DeSantis’ pathetic attempts to cover up his checkered record of screwing over victims of sexual harassment won’t work. Given his voting record and his strong support of President Trump – whose own serial sexual misconduct has caused Florida Republicans headaches – DeSantis is no […]

Read more after the jump.

QUICK CLIPS: What Floridians Are Watching About Rick Scott’s Offshore Drilling Political Games

When Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke came to Florida to help Rick Scott score political points for Scott’s likely Senate run, they held a press conference where Zinke claimed Florida was being removed from consideration for offshore drilling. However, now the Interior Department official in charge of the program — an actual expert — later said that this was not true and that Florida was not exempt.

Watch the scathing coverage from local Florida TV:

Watch the Spectrum News clip here.

Watch the Wink News clip here.

Earlier this month, American Bridge launched a new public awareness campaign on Rick Scott’s hypocrisy on oil drilling in and near Florida, including a digital ad targeting coastal communities and a report on Rick Scott’s long history of supporting drilling.

Read more after the jump.

Then vs Now: Rick Scott Government Shutdown Edition

Despite a disastrous likely government shutdown tonight, Rick Scott has remained shockingly silent on the issue. As Florida’s Governor during the last shutdown in 2013, Rick Scott repeatedly said the president bears responsibility for a shutdown — even saying “the buck stops with the President.” So far, he has said absolutely nothing about President Trump needing to take any responsibility at all.

Rick Scott on Presidential accountability in 2013:


“The buck stops with the President.” 

“The President needs to step up and lead.”

“The President needs to sit down with Congress and they need to compromise.”



Rick Scott on Presidential accountability in 2018:


“For a likely U.S. Senate candidate, Rick Scott has been deafeningly silent on the issue of a government shutdown that could devastate Florida’s economy,” said American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp. “Back when Democrats held the White House, Rick […]

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Quick Clip: Rick Scott’s Nursing Home Scandal Just Keeps Getting Worse

New details have emerged in the tragic story of the South Florida nursing home where 12 people died during Hurricane Irma. By giving out his cell phone number to nursing homes — who called 120 times, and almost never reaching the governor — Rick Scott likely delayed help to the nursing homes and “may have encouraged unrealistic and possibly dangerous expectations.”

“Rick Scott thought he could buy political points during a major disaster by pretending to personally help nursing homes, but he tragically made a bad problem even worse,” said American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp. “That — combined with Rick Scott’s reckless inattention and his deregulation of Florida’s nursing home industry — proved deadly.”

Watch the clip from NBC Miami here.

In September, American Bridge released a digital ad holding Rick Scott accountable for this tragedy. 

Read more after the jump.

Rick Scott’s Own Anti-Opioid Panel “Mystified” Why Scott Ignores Opioid Solutions

Rick Scott’s Drug Policy Advisory Council is “mystified” why Rick Scott isn’t paying closer attention to their report “outlining clear steps to fight the opioid crisis.”

The Council is almost entirely made of people elevated to high office in Florida by Rick Scott himself. People like Peggy Sapp, who asked: “My question would be to all of us, ‘Who is going to deliver that message to the governor?’”

Apparently, no one has. Rick Scott’s spokesperson has been refusing to answer whether Rick Scott even knows his own Council’s anti-opioid report exists.

Maybe it’s because Scott’s Council says the best step he can take is undoing his disastrous 2011 decision to eliminate the Office of Drug Control.

“Rick Scott’s inaction and carelessness when it comes to Florida’s opioid crisis have life and death consequences for Floridians. Now, his office refuses to even confirm he is interested in his own commission’s recommendations for resolving the opioid crisis,” said American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp. “Scott might dismiss […]

Read more after the jump.

New Analysis: Florida CHIP Funding Runs Out In Weeks 

A new report from Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute has devastating news for Florida families: funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program will likely run out by the end of February.

Florida is among the 11 states identified by the report as likely to run out of funding in the next few weeks, due to the Republican Congress’s unconscionable inaction. Over 370,000 children in Florida depend on CHIP for their health care, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

“Eleven states will likely burn through their share of short-term CHIP funding before the end of next month, according to researchers at Georgetown University…They are: Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Washington state and Washington, D.C.,” reports Axios.

“Republicans’ priorities couldn’t be clearer: cutting taxes for their wealthy campaign donors and stripping health care from hundreds of thousands of Floridians. Keeping poor kids on […]

Read more after the jump.

American Bridge Report: Rick Scott’s Offshore Oil Drilling Hypocrisy

Gov. Rick Scott has supported drilling in and around Florida throughout his political career — repeatedly endorsing offshore drilling and drilling in the Everglades.

Today, American Bridge is releasing a new report detailing Rick Scott’s drilling hypocrisy, a record eight years in the making. Read American Bridge’s research report on Rick Scott’s Offshore Oil Drilling Hypocrisy here.

As Scott considers a bid for U.S. Senate, his cronies in the Washington Swamp are pulling out all the stops. On Tuesday, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke made an unannounced trip to Florida to announce the Trump administration’s sudden reversal on their offshore drilling policy — just for Florida, and just as Rick Scott is reportedly making his final decision on running for Senate.

“Rick Scott does whatever is best for his wealthy cronies and big corporations, and that’s why he’s spent his entire political career fighting to expand oil drilling off Florida’s coast. Rick […]

Read more after the jump.

The Real State of Florida: Rick Scott Left The Middle Class Behind

In response to Rick Scott’s final state of the state speech, American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp made the following statement:

“For seven years under Rick Scott, Florida families have been stretched to the breaking point, as basic costs — for health care, storm insurance, and college tuition — have risen, but paychecks keep falling short. From Pensacola to the Keys, Floridians are struggling to reach and stay in the middle class, but for seven years Rick Scott has only done what is best for his wealthy cronies and political donors. While schools are suffering from inadequate funding, Rick Scott focuses on giving massive handouts to big corporations. If Rick Scott runs for U.S. Senate, count on Floridians to hold him accountable for his lies and his abysmal record of always putting them last.”

Read more after the jump.