FCV is appalled that Governor DeSantis would sign Senate Bill 90, a voter suppression bill, into law. Voters expect their elected lawmakers, including the Governor, to make voting more accessible for Floridians, but this bill creates barriers that will effectively silence many workers, voters of color, and voters with disabilities and mobility impairments. FCV will always stand with Florida voters. When voters exercise their rights – whether in person at the ballot box, by mail, or at early voting locations – our environment and our communities win. DeSantis’ support for anti-voter bills is in direct opposition to the health of our democracy.
On Thursday, May 6, Gov. DeSantis signed SB 90 into law during a closed-to-the-press event. Barring members of the press, and giving “exclusive access” only to Fox News highlights the Governor’s continued and unchecked assault on our democracy.
Supervisors of Elections in nearly all of Florida’s 67 counties have spoken against this bill. Stopping this voter suppression bill was one of FCV’s priorities this legislative session, and we stand in strong opposition to this bill with partners like American Civil Liberties Union of Florida, Southern Poverty Law Center, League of Women Voters, Black Voters Matter, Florida Rising, and others.
“Nothing about Florida’s elections has shown a need for this law,” said ACLU of Florida Legislative Director Kara Gross. “In fact, legislators should be encouraged that Floridians turned out in record numbers to participate in their democracy. It should prompt our legislators to seek ways to improve voter access by streamlining voter signature-matching procedures and ensuring uniformity across all counties, or encouraging more equitable polling places.”
Earlier this year, Gov. DeSantis called Florida’s elections the “most transparent and efficient election anywhere in the country.” Yet, SB 90 rolls back many of the effective and secure systems that helped Floridians vote during the COVID-19 pandemic: vote by mail drop boxes, signature verification processes, and vote by mail request requirements and timelines.
“These changes are deliberately designed to affect mostly people of color and are being enacted at the direction of Gov. Ron DeSantis,” said Domingo Garcia, national president of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC). “Voter suppression aimed at American citizens just because they are brown or black is disgraceful, un-American, and frankly unprincipled.”
Just minutes after Gov. DeSantis signed SB 90 into law, the League of Women Voters of Florida, Black Voters Matter, and the Florida Alliance For Retired Americans filed a lawsuit challenging the controversial new voting restrictions.
FCV will continue to monitor voting rights rollbacks and work to make democracy accessible for all.