Last Call for 3.23.22 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

A digest of the day's politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink.

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

AARP has turned to the public to speak on behalf of nursing home residents and convince Gov. Ron DeSantis to wield his veto pen.

After writing the Governor a letter this month to request he veto an industry-backed bill addressing the nursing home staffing crisis, AARP has launched a campaign to enlist Floridians to call and email the Governor’s Office.

The bill (HB 1239), carried by Sen. Ben Albritton and Rep. Lauren Melo, would require nursing homes to conduct facility assessments to determine the staff needed to provide the necessary type of care for the facility’s resident population. Additionally, it would expand the list of professionals who can contribute to the minimum hours of direct care for residents.

AARP says that would cut nursing care for the most vulnerable residents, replacing CNA nursing staffing hours with workers who are not trained to provide bedside care.

“We know Gov. DeSantis cares about older Floridians,” said AARP Florida State Director Jeff Johnson. “He has embraced ‘Seniors First’ policies through achieving the AARP Age-Friendly designation for our state, fighting to lower the cost of prescription drugs, prioritizing COVID vaccines for older adults and those in the long-term care system, and dedicating funds for Alzheimer’s research.”

The Florida Health Care Association, negotiating on behalf of nursing homes, worked with the Florida Justice Association and trial lawyers to reach the agreements within the bill. Now, AARP says residents need someone in their corner.

“On behalf of our nearly three million members in Florida, AARP is asking the public to contact Gov. DeSantis immediately and request that he veto HB 1239,” Johnson said. “Florida’s nursing home residents need our help to advocate on their behalf and ensure that they receive the quality care they deserve.”

Evening Reads

We’re busy paying attention to gas prices in Florida, ignoring signs about groundwater” via Mark Woods of The Florida Times-Union

U.S. finds Russian troops have committed war crimes in Ukraine” via Matthew Lee of The Associated Press

What’s the likelihood of nuclear war?” via Uri Friedman of The Atlantic

The remarkable bad faith involved in the ‘what is a woman’ attack” via Philip Bump of The Washington Post

How Russia and right-wing Americans converged on war in Ukraine” via Sheera Frenkel and Stuart A. Thompson of The New York Times

Many businesses are quitting Russia. Big French firms are staying put.” via Nick Kostov and Stacy Meichtry of The Wall Street Journal

Republicans, after years of pushing for softer criminal sentences, return to the party’s law-and-order posture in Jackson’s confirmation hearing” via Paul Kane of The Washington Post

Tampa condo the latest to sell as NFT as crypto real estate interest grows” via Bernadette Berdychowski of the Tampa Bay Times

A 100-year-old tree stands in a Miami yard. Is it the ‘granddaddy of all Florida mangoes?’” via Carlos Frías of the Miami Herald

Judge tosses lawsuit seeking to block beach access” via Tristan Wood of Florida Politics

New Jacksonville residents may no longer be part of ‘the 904’” via Wes Wolfe of Florida Politics

Quote of the Day

“I worry about the amount of power that would give someone — an essential authority — to basically be able to shut off access to purchasing certain goods. We’d be in uncharted territories.”

— Gov. Ron DeSantis, advocating for cryptocurrencies over a digital dollar.

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