REP. RANDY FINE: Gibson Must Be Held Accountable For Remarks In Opposition To Anti-Semitism Bill
By Space Coast Daily // April 9, 2019
Fine introduced HB 741 which would create a legal definition of anti-Semitism
TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA – District 53 Florida State Representative Randy Fine (R-Palm Bay) demanded on Tuesday the Senate Democrats and the Democrat Party hold Senate Democrat Leader Audrey Gibson accountable for remarks Senator Gibson made during a Judiciary Committee hearing on the companion bill to Fine’s HB 741, Senator Joe Gruters’ 1272.
Fine introduced HB 741 in February, which would create a legal definition of anti-Semitism and require that all educational institutions in Florida treat anti-Semitism in an identical fashion as racism.
“Fighting anti-Semitism is something that used to bring all Floridians together,” said Fine.
“But it is comments like these by the Democrat Leader of the Senate that creates divisiveness – not legislation that will reduce it,” said Fine.
During debate on SB 1272, Gibson said, in regards to the legislation and before voting in opposition, “This kind of thing is what creates divisiveness in this country where we can all coexist… I just feel like this is an intentional piece of legislation to divide.”
Gibson is a Democratic member of the Florida Senate, representing the 6th district, which includes sections of downtown Jacksonville in Duval County, since 2016.
She previously represented the 9th district from 2012 to 2016 and the 1st district from 2011 to 2012.
“It is sad that in the world propagated by Washington Democrats like Congresswomen Ihlan Omar and Rashida Tlaib and Tallahassee Democrats like Audrey Gibson, fighting anti-Semitism is ‘divisive,’ ” said Fine.
“In this time of rising anti-Semitism around both the country and globe, it is unconscionable that the most powerful Democrat in the Florida Senate would vote against banning discrimination based on anti-Semitism. I would strongly encourage the Senate Democrat Caucus to hold Leader Gibson accountable for these statements.
“It was my hope that Florida would take a united stand against the anti-Semitism coming out of Washington; while that hope is now dashed, I am still optimistic that our Republican legislature and Governor DeSantis will repudiate the Omar/Tlaib/Gibson position and make that statement loud and clear.”
Fine has been a leader in tackling anti-Semitism in Florida.
He successfully sponsored legislation to create a zero tolerance policy for Florida governments to do business with those boycotting Israel and a House resolution condemning the United Nations for its anti-Semitic stances on Israel.
Fine also sponsored another resolution in which the Florida House endorsed the movement of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and the first-in-the-nation security funding to ensure that Jewish children are safe from anti-Semitic attacks while at Jewish Day Schools.
District 53 is comprised of the southern portion of Brevard County and includes the entirety of Palm Bay, Malabar, and Grant-Valkaria, and portions of Melbourne, West Melbourne, and unincorporated Brevard.
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