Gwen Graham Condemns Affordable Care Act Repeal Vote
Following the Senate’s procedural vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement plan, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gwen Graham released the following statement:
“Senate Republicans’ new repeal shell bill is a dangerous step in the wrong direction that will result in drastic cuts to Florida seniors on Medicaid, higher costs for working families and less coverage for millions of Americans. It is heartless partisan politics at its worst.
“From the first day of my first campaign, I have said Republicans need to work with Democrats to strengthen the law. In Congress, every time Republicans tried to repeal ObamaCare, I stood up to protect the gains we have made. We can improve upon those gains by expanding access and lowering costs — but no one in Washington or anywhere in America actually believes repealing the Affordable Care Act will achieve those goals. Senator Marco Rubio and his Republican colleagues have voted to take away insurance purely to deliver on an ill-conceived campaign promise.
“As Republicans in Washington move forward with repeal, we must continue to fight back. As governor, I will fight the Trump administration tooth and nail to protect KidCare, increase access to insurance and lower costs in our state. We will expand Medicaid, protect pre-existing conditions, preserve mandatory coverage for preventative care like mammograms, and create a Florida public option.”
Just this month, Graham has performed Workdays at the Sulzbacher Center, a federally qualified health center in Jacksonville, and Shepherd’s Hope, a free and charitable clinic in Seminole County, to highlight the importance of the Affordable Care Act and the need to expand Medicaid in Florida.
In her 2014 House race and throughout her service in Congress, Graham opposed repealing the Affordable Care Act, voted against repeal eight times, and called on Republicans to work with Democrats to improve the legislation. As governor, she will fight for Florida to expand Medicaid, protect pre-existing conditions and create a public option to increase access to insurance, improve care and lower costs.
Today, Gwen Graham announced House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer is endorsing her campaign for governor. Hoyer said Graham is the best candidate. Hoyer is the U.S. Representative for Maryland’s 5th congressional district, serving since 1981. The district includes a large swath of rural and suburban territory southeast of Washington, D.C.
Hoyer said the following about his endorsement of Graham “After raising three children as a working mom, PTA president and public school official, Gwen Graham ran for office to get things done for hardworking families. She stood up for every Floridian and every American by fighting for commonsense reforms, and always put her constituents first, including returning more than $2.5 million to Florida seniors, families and veterans. Just like Washington, Tallahassee badly needs Gwen’s voice of reason, and I’m proud to enthusiastically support her campaign for governor,” Hoyer said. “Gwen is smart, disciplined, tough, caring and compassionate. She is the best candidate to win this race and the best qualified to serve the people of Florida as their next governor.”
In Congress, Graham fought to defend the Affordable Care Act, participated in the House sit in for commonsense gun safety, and was a strong advocate for women’s rights and equality. She sponsored bipartisan legislation to prevent government shutdowns and ban congressional perks, and she prioritized constituent services, returning more than $2.5 million in benefits owed to Floridians — all while cutting her office’s operating budget by 15 percent.
“After a life full of experiences, raising a family and working for my local school district, I decided to run for office to make a difference for Floridians. In just two years, we had many great accomplishments — from expanding the USDA’s StrikeForce against poverty to fighting to protect Florida from fracking and oil drilling,” Graham said. “Whip Hoyer’s friendship and support were an incredible help in my first race and throughout my service in the House. I’m honored to have his support again as we fight to repair the damage from the last twenty years of neglect and failed leadership coming out of Tallahassee.”
Kissimmee State Representative John Cortes was part of a group of lawmakers that on Thursday formally endorsed former Congresswoman Gwen Graham in the Florida Governor’s race.
“Gwen’s momentum in Central Florida is growing as fast as our region’s population.” said Cortes “From fighting for our environment to working in public education, Gwen Graham has dedicated her life to the issues we care most about. I look forward to working with her as our next governor.”
Cortes is the second Osceola County endorsement Graham has earned this week. On Monday, State Senator Victor Torres also endorsed her campaign.
Other lawmakers in the group included Former House Democratic Leader Mark Pafford, Sunrise Representative Katie Edwards, Former Jacksonville Mayor and City Councilman Tommy Hazouri and Duval Soil and Water Chair Shannon Blankinship.
“This isn’t just about the next election. After almost twenty years of Republican rule, we are out of time. Our future and our very way of life are at stake,” said Graham “I’m proud to have the support of these elected officials. Together, we will renew our promise to public schools, protect our environment and build an economy that works for everyone.”
Other candidates in the Democratic primary include Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and Orlando Businessman Chris King. Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam is running on the Republican side.
Former Congresswoman and candidate for Florida Governor, Gwen Graham, is calling for a special session to resolve the impasse regarding implementation over the state’s medical marijuana policy.
State lawmakers were unable to find a compromise on the number of dispensaries in the state which could be stood up before the scheduled end of the legislative session. The responsibility will now fall on the department of health to put in place the constitutional amendment that received over 70% of the vote last November.
“I watched my husband battle cancer and the sickening effects of chemotherapy.” Graham said. “Floridians spent years begging the legislature to take action before taking their case to the voters, but once again, the legislature is ignoring them. If the people of Florida give me the honor of serving as governor, their voices will be heard.”
The impasse has lead to finger pointing between legislators in Tallahassee, with concerns that the Department of Health could potentially botch the roll out of medical marijuana, with many patients currently waiting for relief.
“If my kids acted like the legislature when I told them to clean their rooms, they’d still be grounded,” Graham said. “As governor, I will force the legislature to fulfill their responsibilities, including calling them into special session if needed, to enact medical marijuana legalization.”
Graham is one of four candidates officially running for governor including fellow Democrats Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and Orlando Businessman Chris King. Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam is running on the Republican side.
Former Congresswoman and the newest candidate in the 2018 race for Florida Governor, Gwen Graham, was in Orlando on Wednesday afternoon to promote the use of renewable energy in the state. The event was Graham’s first visit to the City Beautiful as a gubernatorial hopeful.
Graham was flipping over solar panels and drilling them on to the roof of a home in the Christmas area with members from the ESA Renewables team. ESA renewables was selected to lead the solar co-op in Orange County to encourage the use of solar energy in the region. Before her climb, Graham met with officials from the city of Orlando to learn more about their operations and standing as one of the “greenest” cities in the country.
“We need Florida to be the solar capitol of the world.” said Graham “We need to be encouraging the use of renewable energy sources. We are the Sunshine State and we should be using the sun that Florida receives to cut down on our need for other energy sources.”
The daughter of former Governor Bob Graham announced her campaign on Tuesday morning and will be holding similar “work days”, like the ones she held during her time in Congress, throughout her campaign.
She joins the Democratic primary to succeed incumbent Rick Scott along with Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and Orlando Businessman Chris King. Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam became the first major Republican to jump into the race after filing on Monday. The GOP has already targeted both Graham and Gillum early on with negative email campaigns.
“It has been incredibly wonderful and very meaningful” said Graham about her first day and a half as a candidate “I’m honored to talk about what I am committed to doing for the state of Florida, and not just rhetoric but specifically how we’re going to get it done.”
On Tuesday morning, former Congresswoman Gwen Graham officially announced her intentions to run for Governor next year, making her the second major candidate to jump into the contest in less than 24 hours.
The daughter of former Governor Bob Graham made her announcement in Miami Gardens surrounded by friends and supporters.
“I’m so proud of Dad, but I stand on my own two feet.” said Graham “I’ve certainly learned from him, but I would never expect anyone to support me simply because I am Dad’s daughter. I will be a governor that does focus on what he focused on, which is making the right decisions for Florida again.”
She also slammed current Governor Rick Scott’s policies during her announcement.
“Instead of passing commonsense economic policies, like raising the minimum wage and paid sick leave, Rick Scott repeats, jobs, jobs, jobs.. As in you’ll need three jobs just to get by” she added.
Graham’s entrance officially makes it a three way Democratic primary. She joins Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and Orlando Businessman Chris King in the contest. Fellow Democrats, Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine and Orlando Attorney John Morgan are also considering a run.
On Monday, Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam filed to run for Governor next year, making him the first major Republican to jump in the race. He’ll be making his formal announcement on May 10th in Bartow and has been leading in early polling.
The Andrew Gillum campaign is welcoming it’s two newest rivals in next year’s race for Florida Governor. Republican Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam filed to run Monday and former Congresswoman Gwen Graham is expected to announce her candidacy on Tuesday morning.
Gillum’s campaign makes on subtle jab at Graham’s former position in the unpopular congress.
“The Gillum for Governor campaign welcomes two former Members of Congress to this race – Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and former Congresswoman Gwen Graham. We’re excited to offer our different approach to solving the challenges Florida faces on healthcare, the economy, public education, protecting our environment, and commonsense gun safety reforms. At this critical time, Florida needs a new, fresh direction and we look forward to debating the best way to achieve that.”
The campaign for the Tallahassee Mayor is less subtle addressing Putnam’s experience, connecting his policies to current Governor Rick Scott
“In fact, we’re especially excited to contrast our ideas with Mr. Putnam, who is essentially running to continue Governor Rick Scott’s seven years of failed policies that have hurt Florida families and created an economy that has left too many behind.”
The Democratic Gubernatorial primary field will be three deep tomorrow with Gillum, Graham, and Orlando Businessman Chris King already in the contest. Putnam is the first major Republican candidate and has been leading in early polling.