Please see attached letter sent to the Florida Chamber of Commerce by State Senator Rene Garcia regarding the Cuba/Syria Bill. (SB 1144/HB 959)
October 25, 2012
Chairman Anthony J. Connelly
Florida Chamber of Commerce
136 South Bronough Street Tallahassee, Florida 32301
Dear Chairman Connelly,
We are extremely disappointed in learning of The Florida Chamber of Commerce’s decision to file a brief with the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals opposing SB 1144 which prohibits companies that conduct business with the rogue states of Cuba and Syria to contract with the State of Florida and other state governmental entities. Quite frankly, we are appalled with your decision to accept providing economic benefits to these states which support terrorism and communism without taking into consideration all those who have suffered and died at the hands of such oppressive regimes.
The Florida Chamber of Commerce has a standing mission in protecting free enterprise in the State of Florida. As Americans, we champion that same cause here at home. We believe the path to prosperity is a capitalist system with the free exchange of goods and services; in addition to essential political freedoms. That is what makes our country so great. We fail to comprehend why the Florida Chamber of Commerce is so adamantly attempting to block legislation which condemns political and economic oppression in other countries, especially with a country 90 miles away from our borders. We find it hypocritical that the Florida Chamber of Commerce would condone the economic and political legitimacy of countries that fight against the principles in which this country and your organization were founded upon.
The Florida Legislature voted unanimously to prohibit tax dollars from supporting these countries because we believe in free enterprise. The bill was subsequently signed into law by Governor Rick Scott. Continuing to oppose this law in this manner and at this late hour is an abomination to the very fabric of our state and country. Again, your decision to choose money over the freedom and lives of millions is extremely disappointing.
State Senator René García
Florida Hispanic Caucus, Chairman
CC: Florida Chamber of Commerce Board Members