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Florida lawmakers support presidential candidates, but forgot to vote in primary

Florida legislators may have publicly backed a presidential candidate, but new research finds that several lawmakers failed to vote in the state’s primary election.

Noah Pransky of WTSP reports that a number of lawmakers — just like in 2012 – simply did not take part in Florida’s March 15 presidential preference primary, including four from Miami-Dade County: Republican Rep. Erik Fresen, Democratic Reps. Daphne Campbell, Cynthia Stafford, and State Sen. Gwen Margolis.

Fresen had endorsed Marco Rubio, who lost Florida and ended his campaign soon afterward. Stafford and Margolis endorsed Hillary Clinton, the winner of the Democratic primary.

Although failing to vote in the primary were Republican Reps. Ben Albritton and Halsey Beshears as well as Democrat Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda, Pransky writes.

State lawmaker’s 96 percent voting rate was much higher than four years earlier, with a 90 percent recorded voting rate – the 2012 primary had only Republican participation.

As for the state’s top leaders, each one voted in the PPP: Gov. Rick Scott, Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, Attorney General Pam Bondi, Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam, and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater.

In response, Pransky notes that Rehwinkel Vasilinda explained in a tweet she didn’t vote as a protest over “closed primaries.”

Written By

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist, editor and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing, reporting and management experience, Phil produced content for both print and online, in addition to founding several specialty websites, including HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range included covering news, local government and entertainment reviews for Patch.com, technical articles, and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine as well as advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as editor and production manager for Extensive Enterprises Media since 2013 and lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul. He can be reached at phil.ammann@gmail.com.

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Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

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