Amendment Debate Heats Up in Florida House

The bill sets a two thirds margin for passage rather than just a simple majority, but the committee refused to hear from audience members and opponents were upset they could not speak against the proposal.

The committee chairman says the 12 to two vote proves lawmakers didn’t need to take more time.

Rep. David Simmons (R) Altamonte Springs, says, “It was fully debated last year, this last spring a year ago. Same, almost identical bill, so it was thoroughly vetted. We had limited time today. I went ahead and put it off from the last meeting, so there was every reason to get it through."

Rep. Dan Gelber, (D) Miami, says, “I think this is outrageous. I think they should be ashamed of themselves. I think they ought to think about giving this the time it deserves. This is the judiciary committee. If we don’t examine these things fully and have an open debate, what purpose is it for people to send their legislators here?”

If the measure gets to the ballot, it will take only a simple majority of 50 percent plus one to pass.