A screenshot of the anti-Gelber ad (Pic via YouTube)

The latest TV spot by Republican Attorney General candidate Pam Bondi singles out her opponent, state Sen. Dan Gelber of Miami Beach, for having supported a bipartisan adoption bill that overwhelmingly passed the legislature in 2001. The ad highlights the fact that the law contained a provision requiring that parents seeking to give up their children for adoption put their names in the newspaper.

The so-called “scarlet letter law” was eventually repealed in 2003, with Gelber’s help, and in a debate between the attorney general candidates earlier this month, Gelber pointed out that two other Republicans currently running for office, Marco Rubio and Jeff Atwater, also voted for the bill.

The law was also an issue in the 2006 attorney general campaign, in which Bill McCollum defeated Walter “Skip” Campbell, who’d sponsored the bill in the senate.

Gelber’s campaign issued a statement entitled “Women for Gelber Set the Record Straight on Adoption Law”:

In a true act of desperation, Pam Bondi today falsely attacked former federal prosecutor and Democratic nominee for Attorney General Dan Gelber (D-Miami Beach) with a deplorable TV ad that lies about Gelber’s record and attempts to mislead Florida voters. Bondi is attacking Gelber for his vote on a comprehensive, bipartisan adoption bill that streamlined the adoption process, reduced costs and protected adoptive families from frivolous challenges. The bill had some unintended consequences that Gelber helped repeal. Three women legislators from both sides of the aisle who voted for the legislation, as did the overwhelming majority of the Florida Legislature, issued statements to set the record straight.

“It is appalling to me that anyone would ever question Dan’s commitment to standing up for women and protecting Florida families,” said Palm Beach County Tax Collector and former State Representative Ann Gannon. “I served with Dan in the Florida Legislature and he has always been a champion for women. Pam Bondi needs to stop lying to Florida voters.”

HB 141, the bill in question, was sponsored by then-State Representative Evelyn Lynn who is now a State Senator. The bill overwhelmingly passed both chambers of the Florida Legislature in 2001 by a vote of 104-8 in the House and 30-8 in the Senate. The bill was endorsed and supported by the Family Law Section of the Florida Bar and the Florida Catholic Conference. The provision of the bill that created the unintended consequences was repealed in 2003 with Gelber’s help.

“The bill that Pam Bondi is using to distort Dan’s record fixed many of the problems with the adoption process in Florida, and although it had some unintended consequences, we took action to fix the law,” said West Palm Beach Mayor and Former State Representative Lois Frankel. “Dan helped repeal the unintended consequences of the bill, and for Pam Bondi to attack Dan’s character is unfair and misleading.”

“This bipartisan bill was supported by the majority of women in the Florida legislature and passed overwhelmingly with support from both sides of the aisle,” added former Republican State Senator Nancy Argenziano. “Dan has always stood up for women and Florida families, and we need him as our next Attorney General. What we don’t need is someone like Pam Bondi who will continue the political games and false attacks that have become par for the course in Tallahassee.”

View the ad in full below:

0 Shares:
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Progress Energy nuclear plant settlement filed

On Friday, utilities provider Progress Energy filed a comprehensive settlement agreement with the state Public Service Commission — an agreement that specifically addresses outstanding issues with the company's nuclear plant at Crystal River, which was closed for repairs in 2009 and hasn't opened since.

Scott vetoes bill that would have killed Correctional Medical Authority

When he signed the budget on Thursday, Gov. Rick Scott also vetoed a handful of conforming bills, which are technically supposed to help implement the budget but aren't always directly tied to appropriations. State lawmakers from both sides of the aisle had been calling for one of those vetoes — H.B. 5305, a bill that would have eliminated the Correctional Medical Authority, which oversees health care in state prisons.

ICE announces Secure Communities reforms

John Morton, director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, announced Friday changes to the embattled immigration-enforcement program Secure Communities, which allows local law enforcement agencies to check the fingerprints of people they arrest with FBI and Department of Homeland Security databases to make sure they are not undocumented criminals.

Rep. Adams, pushing for health care reform repeal, still receiving public health care: News. Politics. Media

While many Republicans in Congress have come under fire in recent months for railing against federal health care reform while simultaneously accepting government-subsidized health insurance, a handful have moved to more legitimately align themselves with their position by refusing to accept the benefits afforded to federal employees. One such representative is Sandy Adams, R-Oviedo, who calls for the repeal of health care reform and has turned down Congress' health insurance plan. Adams, however, still receives taxpayer-subsidized health insurance through her husband, a Florida judge.