Florida delegation reacts to passage of Inflation Reduction Act along party lines
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Lawmakers responded predictably to the Democrat-passed bill.

Congress has passed the Inflation Reduction Act, which was greeted with varying levels of enthusiasm or disapproval by members of the Florida delegation.

U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, a St. Petersburg Democrat, released a statement: “Today, House Democrats passed once-in-a-generation legislation to combat the climate crisis, lower healthcare costs, reduce inflation, and invest in our country’s greatest asset — the American people. The Inflation Reduction Act is about making our government work for YOU — not just Big Oil, Big Pharma, and the ultra-wealthy. Democrats have always, and will always, put People Over Politics. I’m thrilled to send the Inflation Reduction Act to the President’s desk and put the American people back in the driver’s seat!”

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, a Tampa Democrat, also issued remarks: “Today, I was proud to take historic action to lower drug costs for Floridians, taking on Big Pharma’s egregious price gouging and instituting an out-of-pocket cap for seniors. We’re also delivering the largest climate and clean energy investment in history, paving the way for reduced pollution, cleaner air, and cost-saving electric vehicles and technologies. All while making a historic down payment on deficit reduction of approximately $300 billion to fight inflation.”

U.S. Rep. Val Demings, an Orlando Democrat, said in a statement: “This is about saving you money and creating new jobs. This bill will reduce the cost of prescription drugs, make health insurance more affordable, cap out of pocket costs, reduce your energy bill, reduce the federal deficit, and bring down inflation. As the daughter of a maid and a janitor every dollar mattered in our household. I’ll always fight to protect working families. Senate Republicans tried and failed to block this legislation because it takes on their biggest backers: prescription drug companies, fossil fuel companies, and billionaire corporations.”

U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, a Boca Raton Democrat, came out with a lengthy statement: “For decades, Americans faced soaring prescription costs, as health systems in our peer nations negotiated needed savings for their citizens. Our communities struggled under the weight of the climate crisis, while partisanship in Washington stifled clean energy innovation and greenhouse gas reduction. And our families worried about making ends meet, as prices ballooned faster than our pocketbooks. But today, we took a major step to end that pattern. Today, Congress voted to make historic investments in reducing healthcare costs, combating climate change, bolstering energy security, and countering inflation. I am proud to have supported the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) in the House, and proud to see it go to President (Joe) Biden’s desk, because of what this legislation means for the future of our community, our state, and our country. The IRA is a win for South Florida:

It will lower the cost of prescription drugs, particularly for America’s seniors. The IRA finally empowers Medicare to negotiate fair drug prices directly with companies. It caps annual out-of-pocket prescription drug spending for seniors at $2,000 and monthly insulin costs for seniors at $35, while also penalizing pharmaceutical companies for unfair price hikes. The bill also extends needed subsidies under the Affordable Care Act for another three years.

It will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 while lowering clean energy costs and creating clean energy jobs. The IRA not only creates a new Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund that invests billions in low- and zero-emissions technology, but it also includes a policy I have championed, putting a price on methane — a greenhouse over 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. The bill establishes a Methane Emissions Reduction Program that will hold big oil and gas companies responsible for excess pollution while driving clean energy innovation. It also offers tax rebates to American families to improve public access to clean energy solutions. This bill marks the single largest investment in climate action in our nation’s history.

It will reduce the deficit and fight inflation, while ensuring large corporations pay their fair share in taxes. The IRA requires billionaire corporations to pay a minimum tax in order to help address climate change and reduce the deficit.

This bill marks a major step toward a cleaner, safer, more prosperous future for our community and for communities around the country. Read the full text of the bill here. I look forward to keeping you informed as additional information is made available about accessing IRA funding.”

U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel, a West Palm Beach Democrat, released a statement: “”Putting people over politics, Democrats have taken bold action to bring down the kitchen table costs – from health care premiums to prescription drug costs to energy prices – while closing tax loopholes and paying down the deficit.”

U.S. Rep. Al Lawson, a Tallahassee Democrat, released a statement: “Today, House Democrats passed the landmark Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). This historic legislation will lower health care costs, cut prescription drug prices, create millions of good-paying jobs, deliver the most significant action on climate in history and drastically reduce the deficit. The high cost of food, gas, and other essential items such as prescription drugs continue to place Floridians and other Americans in tough predicaments where they may have to pick which items their households can afford and that is just wrong. The IRA is designed to lessen that burden for American families. Additionally, this measure is fully paid for by requiring the biggest corporations and the ultra-wealthy citizens pay their fair share in taxes. There are no new taxes on families making $400,000 or less and no new taxes on small businesses. Democrats are constantly working to invest in our communities, economic future, and planet. Now, the House is successfully sending this legislation to President Biden’s desk for his signature. It is always rewarding when we fulfill our duties as lawmakers by making advancements for working families and the middle class.”

U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, a Winter Park Democrat, tweeted: “Today I voted to pass the historic Inflation Reduction Act.   This bill will deliver the largest climate investment in the history of the U.S., make health care more affordable for millions of Americans, and reduce the national deficit. This bill also includes a major provision I helped to negotiate that will finally lower prescription drug prices for American families, without hurting our nation’s ability to develop new medicines. I’m proud of this bill and the positive impacts it will have on my constituents in Florida and people across the country.”

On the Republican side, U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, a Naples Republican, tweeted: “Seniors lost because Dems cut $280 BILLION from Medicare.  Job creators lost because Dems just raised taxes – again. Drivers lost because Dems just raised gas taxes. Who won? The IRS that got another $80 billion and 87,000 more armed agents to go after your money.”

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio used the passage as a chance to attack opponent Demings.

“Val Demings once again put party politics over Floridians today, signing off on more audits and tax increases for working class Floridians as families are struggling to get by,” Elizabeth Gregory, communications director for Rubio’s Senate campaign, said in a statement. “This bill will do nothing to reduce costs of living, and Val Demings doesn’t seem to care.”

U.S. Rep. Michael Waltz of St. Augustine had this to say: “Democrats have yet again failed the American people by unleashing new tax and spend legislation that will ultimately target middle class Americans and small businesses with tax hikes during a recession and record inflation, hundreds of thousands of new IRS audits, and subsidies for favored energy interests. The laundry list of horrible measures includes spending $80 billion to allow the IRS to hire 87,000 new agents resulting 710,000 audits on Americans making less than $75,000, raises $700 billion in new taxes including tax increases on millions of families and Main Street businesses, subsidizing $350 million in ‘Green New Deal’ initiatives, increasing an excise tax on crude oil and imported petroleum products while Americans continue to struggle at the gas pump, and expanding Obamacare subsidies by $64 billion. To make matters worse, the Congressional Budget Office projects this so-called ‘Inflation Reduction Act’ will not reduce the current inflation crisis and record high prices as Democrats are purporting. Any deficit reductions seen by this bill, which are unlikely, would be realized years down the line. Under President Biden and Democratic leadership, the federal government has spent nearly $10 trillion in just over a year and a half. Americans deserve better leadership from our elected officials, and I will continue to pursue policies with my Republican colleagues that will ease the burden on Americans by reducing spending and lowering taxes — not raising taxes on Americans during a recession.”

Elizabeth Gregory, communications director for Marco Rubio for Senate, released a statement criticizing U.S. Rep. Val Demings’ vote: “Val Demings once again put party politics over Floridians today, signing off on more audits and tax increases for working class Floridians as families are struggling to get by. This bill will do nothing to reduce costs of living, and Val Demings doesn’t seem to care.”

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected]


8 comments

  • PeterH

    August 12, 2022 at 7:00 pm

    Marco Rubio has no interest in Medicare’s ability to negotiate lower drug prices for seniors or limiting out of pocket drug expenses to $2000.

    Complaining Republicans can’t point to a single Republican controlled state as a model for fiscal responsibility.

    Vote all Republicans out of office.

    • Ocean Joe

      August 12, 2022 at 7:04 pm

      Can we keep Louie Gohmert? Please?

  • Just a comment

    August 12, 2022 at 8:14 pm

    But these programs are being busted. Because someone don’t like the Boomer’s.
    In 5 year’s that looks to be obsolete so Florida’s people better look into there county insurance.
    If they want better other countries are nicer to there peeps

    • Elliott Offen

      August 12, 2022 at 9:30 pm

      ^ Judging by this man’s spelling and grammar…his family is the victim of decades of Republican malfeasance, neglect, and non-governance in some piss poor county. They’ve grifted him to a husk psychologically and financially.

  • Just a comment

    August 12, 2022 at 8:42 pm

    And if you into a pickle better get on tictoc and get 400,000 no much taxes for the adverage

  • Joe Corsin

    August 12, 2022 at 9:07 pm

    Of course people like Fraud Scott don’t want to be taxed. Their companies are their authoritarian slave plantations, grift games, and they don’t give a shit about the nation as a whole or even the people that they grift off of. All the other bullshit that the others said was just more fear mongering and lies. All the GOP does is represent the rich and try to scare everyone else into thinking that what happens to the rich will also happen to everyone else. It’s a bunch of lies and intimidation by puppets of the rich. By the way, they are anti federal government. If it was up to them there would only be states making all the rules. A corrupt grifters paradise where they can do whatever they want. This is why these people should not even be in Congress at all.

    • Jerry

      August 12, 2022 at 10:18 pm

      They are not hiring 87,000 IRS agents to audit a few rich people.

      And yes, the federal government is massively corrupt and way more massive than the founders ever intended it to be.

      The federal government is $30 trillion in debt, bro. It needs to be cut.

  • Joe Corsin

    August 13, 2022 at 10:30 am

    Partially agree…but IRS is unfortunately needed because Wall Street psychos scam and don’t want to pay taxes. It’s not just “a few rich people” who don’t pay taxes. Pay your taxes and you have nothing to worry about…easy. However, Department of Homeland Security needs to be eliminated and a few other Fed agencies could go bye bye as well. Even if people agree on things that should be done… guess what…they won’t be because this nation is not a democracy! It’s actually becoming more and more of a plutocracy and laws need to be written to stop it relating to campaign finance and taxes. TRUMP made things worse with those tax breaks for the super rich. Money doesn’t trickle down..that’s a myth. And the Federal government can be trimmed along with tax increases. It doesn’t have to be one way or the other.

Comments are closed.


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