You Made A Difference!
As we put a bow on 2023, let's celebrate the accomplishments and difference all our hard work made this year, including the election of Donna Deegan, Jacksonville's first woman mayor. For all of you who canvassed, participated in text- and phone banks, addressed postcards, attended meetings, posted yard signs, signed and collected petitions, encouraged your friends and neighbors to vote, contributed time and resources, and stayed engaged in efforts to build a better community --- thank you! We are grateful for your involvement in BAM and look forward to even more success in 2024!
Help Flip FL House District 35
Just in case you find yourself with a bit of extra time and want to get that "feel-good" burst that comes from donating your time or efforts to a great cause, consider helping with a text bank or phone bank for Tom Keen, a Democrat running in a special election for state House District 35 in Central Florida against a Moms for Liberty endorsed candidate. This is a district that Biden won by 5 points in 2020! We can flip this seat and get FL one step closer to being a more representative legislature. The election is Tuesday, January 16, early voting begins on January 6.
Tom is a Navy vet who has been endorsed by Florida Rising, Orange County Black Caucus, SEIU, Orange Co. Teachers Association, Moms Demand Action, Planned Parenthood, Rainbow Democrats of Orange County, Orange County Hispanic Caucus, VoteVets and many others.
Abortion Petitions Near Ballot Threshold
Verified petitions to place an amendment to the state constitution protecting access to abortion on the 2024 ballot reached 833,743 last week --- 94% of the number needed! Additionally, 12 of 14 congressional districts (CD) have met the required threshold for validated petitions, with four additional districts exceeding 90% of the needed number. Organizers are confident that we will meet all requirements before the February deadline.
More than 72,000 petitions have been validated in this area (43,104 in CD4 and 29,410 in CD5). CD4, which covers parts of Jacksonville, as well as Nassau and Clay Counties, exceeded threshold requirements by 34%. CD5, which includes the Beaches and extends down to St. Johns County, currently needs 4,800 more validated petitions to reach the threshold. Half of all the state's congressional districts must submit a required number of petitions to get an amendment on the ballot. More than 1.4 million petitions have been collected statewide; Supervisors of Elections are continuing to review submitted petitions.
The petition validation process was not without its issues in Duval, which initially had one of the highest rejection rates in the state (40%). Based on evidence provided by Jax NOW, the SOE re-examined more than 11,000 rejected petitions and validated 2,200 of them. Jax NOW is encouraging people who signed a petition to check on its status by contacting the SOE at (904) 255-8683 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with their name and date of birth. Follow the directions provided by the SOE to submit a corrected petition.
The proposed ballot amendment faces one last hurdle: the state Supreme Court is currently weighing ballot language which was challenged by Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody. The court is expected to rule in the spring.