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Legacies, Hot Dogs & Diapers - April 22, 2024

Honoring a Great Florida Leader

Reading about Bob Graham, his leadership, and his contributions to Florida as Governor, U. S. Senator, and state lawmaker was a sad reminder of how far we have regressed since 2016.

Graham died last Tuesday and left a legacy of dedication to bettering the lives of the people who elected him. Tributes from across the political spectrum attest to his commitment to harmony, decency, and across-the-aisle respect which seems surreal in the current political environment of MAGA-fueled social media, FOX News, and politicians bent on making government dysfunctional. Graham worked tirelessly on environmental issues and equal rights. He enjoyed an 87% approval rating as Governor and famously tried 400+ jobs across the state to connect with his constituents. President Biden, who served with Graham in the Senate, recognized his nearly 50 years of public service and his significant contributions to making the country safer and stronger. We join in honoring his legacy.

Unfortunately, Florida's current leadership --- not to mention the GOP candidates for President and U.S. Senator --- fall woefully short of the bar set by Graham. They are creating a legacy that includes dismantling public education, banning books, stoking culture wars, rolling back reproductive and voting rights, and staging publicity stunts with immigrants fleeing oppression, among many other backward policies. Our job is to make sure voters remember this in November.

He Got It Right

It took a bipartisan coalition in Congress this weekend to finally pass a much-needed bill to aid Ukraine. Democrats outnumbered Republicans voting for the measure which was cobbled together by GOP House Speaker Mike Johnson despite threats to oust him by MAGA extremists. How far they have regressed from the party committed to fighting Russian aggression. Take a minute to thank our U. S. Representative John Rutherford for voting with the 101 GOP members who supported the bill. His colleague Aaron Bean, did not. Email Rutherfordor call his Jax office (904.831.5205). He did the right thing.

Who's Better at Eating Hot Dogs? Changing Diapers? Why We Need to Do More & Worry Less

We can't resist sharing results from a poll highlighted by Gabe Fleisher in a recent post. Echelon Insights surveyed 1,020 likely voters on the important stuff — whether Joe Biden or Donald Trump would perform better in tasks like winning a hot dog eating contest or changing a baby's diaper. Biden bested his predecessor in only three areas: diaper changing, housesitting, and teaching a cooking class. Trump swept the rest --- giving further credence to the unreliability of polls and/or the fact that people responding to them are goofing on all of us. Check out the full results- it's Question #44.

If you are looking for a different take on the polls and why Biden is going to win in 2024, listen to Simon Rosenberg's remarks at the Beaches Democratic Club meeting last week. It is well worth 45 minutes of your time! Get inspired and motivated to roll up your sleeves and get to work turning out the vote in 2024!

Arts in the Park

We had a great day (and great volunteers!) at Arts in the Park last Saturday!  We collected 60+ candidate petitions for Rachel Grage, candidate for State House District 16, as well as nearly 40 petitions for a 2026 ballot measure to expand Medicaid in Florida. We even registered a new voter! And we talked to a whole lot of neighbors about issues on the ballot in 2024 and the importance of electing candidates that support public education. Not everyone agreed but we were buoyed by those who did. A special thanks to Katie Hathaway and the Public School Defenders for their help!

SWIFT: Messaging to Win in Florida

The Statewide Indivisible Florida Task Force (SWIFT) Collaboration Call on Tuesday, April 23, at 5:30 p.m. will feature special guest Anders Croy, Communications Director at Florida Watch. Croy will discuss the importance of strategic, disciplined, good messaging in winning Florida. He'll also introduce Scott Watch and talk about other key issues on the minds of Floridians and how to talk about them effectively. Register here and join Indivisible affiliates like BAM from around the state for this networking opportunity.

Join us for the virtual kick-off of Joyful Resistance: Together, We Win! 2024 Get-Out-The-Vote Summit featuring political commentator and author Steve Phillips! Invited leaders of community organizations and advocacy groups will meet on May 8th in Jacksonville to plan strategies and strengthen their collaboration in getting out the vote for the 2024 election. The summit is hosted by BAM, Indivisible Mandarin and Indivisible Jax Riverside in partnership with the Northside Coalition of Jacksonville, Florida for All and Floridians for Democracy. The event is supported by a GROW grant from national Indivisible. RSVP for the virtual opening session here.

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Only 197 days until the 2024 election!

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