• Lakey Love

Trump HWY in Florida? Really?

Updated: Jan 27

Republican Florida legislator and provocateur Rep. Anthony Sabatini (R) strikes again.

by Lakey Love, January 26, 2021

State economists stated in December of 2020 that Florida lawmakers face a projected $3.3 billion revenue loss over the next two years as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic. The only thing the state legislature has to do by law each year is pass a budget. Instead of figuring out how to pass a budget to support Florida’s most vulnerable and keep small businesses open during the pandemic, Republican lawmaker and provocateur House Rep. Anthony Sabatini has decided to spend his time trying to rename HWY 27 the “Donald J. Trump Highway”.

A Trump HWY in Florida? Really? Sabatini wants to name the 1400+ mile highway that cuts through Florida after a president who supported a coup on the nation’s Capitol and is the only president to be impeached twice? Yep.

ACT NOW: CLICK HERE and send an email to Sabatini, his staff, and House Speaker Chris Sprowls and let them know you object to a Trump HWY in Florida

Most who pay attention to what is happening in the Florida Legislature believe that Sabatini’s “Trump HWY” bill won’t even get a public hearing after it has been filed. There are many reasons for this. First, Sabatini’s district in Lake County outside Orlando is 72.6% white, mostly low income, and made up of rural urban sprawl Trump supporters. This is not the main reason. The main reason is simple common sense. Trump is a hot potato for Florida Republicans right now. Florida voter opinion polls on Trump show a lack of support, including a rise in Republican dissatisfaction. Republicans across the nation are withdrawing support for Trump in the face of an armed insurrection. Sabatini is playing to his base with this bill but he is not playing to those in power.

He made similar mistakes last year.

Last year all but one of Sabatini’s bills died in committee, were vetoed by the Governor, or never even got a committee hearing. One of those bills was the infamous anti-trans youth medical ban that would have criminalized highly important medical treatment for trans youth, including hormone blockers. HB1365 died in the House Health Quality Subcommittee last year in its first committee appearance after it got an outpouring of criticism by transgender people and their allies across the state. Unfortunately, Florida Policy Action Network expects this bill to return in 2021 as it has already been filed as model legislation in 3 other southern states (Alabama, Missouri, and Texas) where, like Florida, rightwing conservative hate legislation gets a lot of play. Unfortunately, we just have to wait and see if it is Sabatini, or someone more politically savvy, who files. All legislators have until March 2nd to file.

Sabatini’s other 2021 bills are equally outrageous as the Trump HWY. He currently has 13 bills sponsored in the House doing everything from pushing Congress to repeal the Communications Decency Act to repealing restrictions for people in Florida to carry automatic weapons during a pandemic or public emergency. As of yet, none of these bills have been assigned to committee agenda in the House and most do not have companion bills in the Senate.

Despite probable lack of support for the Trump HWY, speaking against the proposed legislation is important. Residents of Florida need to show Republican lawmakers that people of ethics will not stand for the hypocrisy of a “Trump HWY” regardless of the fact that Trump will make this state his permanent residency.

ACT NOW: CLICK HERE and send an email to Sabatini, his staff, and House Speaker Chris Sprowls and let them know you object to a Trump HWY in Florida.
SPEAK OUT: Fill out this form and become a part of the FL Policy Watch “Impacted Voices” Team and/or offer a quote FLPAN can use against the proposed Trump HWY.

Finally, keep your eyes open for Sabatini tricks in the future. Florida Policy Action Network has our eye on him. He is an American Legislative Exchange Council legislator who is backed by corporate money, promotes ALEC and other model bills, and has powerful conservative think tanks and astroturf groups like Americans for Prosperity in his arsenal. He may be a provocatuer, but rightwing Florida likes provocatuers. Lets not forget they won the majority vote for the provocateur “MAGA” president in the 2020 election.


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