Environment Florida today released its federal scorecard evaluating how the Florida congressional delegation has voted when it comes to supporting clean air, clean water and other environmental protections. Absences count against a member’s score. State Director Jennifer Rubiello released the following statement:
“The country is terribly polarized these days on all sorts of issues, including the need to protect our environment. It shouldn’t be this way and it didn’t used to be. Although we do have a number of champs from both political parties, unfortunately more often than not the Florida delegation is no exception.
“Overall, the U.S. Senate scored only 48% and the U.S. House of Representatives scored 45%, which does not bode well for our air or water. The two Florida senators averaged 50% and our representatives averaged 50%, so we are actually just at the national average.
“That said, we in Florida can be proud that 2 members from both branches, U.S. Senator Bill Nelson and U.S. Representative Darren Soto, voted with us 100% of the time.
“Many legislators were out of town in early September because of Hurricane Irma which means they missed votes. Were it not for the hurricane, based on past voting records and other work likely at least ⅓ of the Florida congressional delegation would have scored over 90%, had they been present. We are confident Florida’s environment and families are represented by many real environmental champs. These members include U.S. Representative Kathy Castor, U.S. Representative Charlie Crist, and U.S. Representative Ted Deutch.
“It’s also good news that ⅔ of members were willing to part with their Republican colleagues to protect the environment on a variety of issues. Of this group U.S. Representative Brian Mast, U.S. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and U.S. Representative Carlos Curbelo stand out for their work.
“But, unfortunately Florida also had 6 members, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, U.S. Representative Ted Yoho, U.S. Representative Bill Posey, U.S. Representative Gus Bilirakis, U.S. Representative Dennis Ross, and U.S. Representative Francis Rooney, who voted with us 0% of the time.
“The Florida delegation is a mixed bag when it comes to the environment. Here’s hoping our Congresspeople uniformly start to show the kind of strong and effective leadership we need to reflect the core environmental values so many of us share.”