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~ The James Madison Institute hosts luncheon in Pensacola, Fla. with more than
100 community members, businesses owners and elected officials in attendance ~
TALLAHASSEE — More than 100 attendees gathered in Pensacola, Fla. to hear from the Speaker-Designate of the Florida House Steve Crisafulli and Florida Representative Mike Hill (R-Pensacola) at a luncheon hosted by The James Madison Institute (JMI) on Wednesday, Aug. 20. Dr. Bob McClure, JMI president and CEO, gave the opening remarks and both Speaker-Designate Crisafulli and Rep. Hill gave comments centered on the opportunities and obstacles facing Florida to increase economic prosperity in the state. They also shared moments from their personal stories that led them to pursue elected office.
“We’re extremely honored to have with us today two well-respected leaders that understand the importance of protecting freedom in Florida. What happens in Tallahassee is extremely important and as everyone in this room realizes, being involved with the issues they care about is critical,” said Dr. McClure in his opening comments to the crowd. “Truly, Florida demographically represents the entire country and everyone is watching what Florida does. It’s not an accident that Florida has become a land of the free.”
Dr. McClure then introduced Rep. Hill who discussed the importance of upholding American values and the oath he took in the military to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. He reminded the audience that they have a great responsibility to guide what comes out of Florida.
“When we limit the size of government that is less that the ever-growing entity needs to feed itself. The result? More hard earned money that we keep for ourselves, more personal freedom that we have. However, with that freedom comes individual responsibility to make sure the principles that guide us to make the right decisions are passed down to the next generation. If we do this, the less we need government to be the safety net. It’s all connected and all works together. Florida is the example that the nation is watching. We need to be a shining light piercing the darkness of deception coming out of Washington, D.C. Florida is going to be that state. We’re not taking our country back, but taking our country forward.”
Following Rep. Hill, Speaker-Designate Steve Crisafulli addressed the crowd and told of his background in agriculture and, as an eighth generation Floridian and a fourth generation resident of Brevard County, his dedication to doing what is right for Florida. He also spoke about how government can either stifle or encourage opportunities for individuals to succeed.
“I learned my work ethic from working in agriculture – specifically from talks with my dad in the front seat of his truck. I firmly believe the American Dream is still alive and that the best days of our country are yet to come because of states like Florida that understand how opportunity is created. It’s really the Florida Dream — everything we’ve put in place has helped Floridians pursue their passions and be successful. But, it doesn’t happen on its own.”
Audience members followed up with questions regarding the incoming leadership member’s initiatives, redistricting, the upcoming election, health care and education. Dr. McClure closed the luncheon encouraging attendees to stay updated on the policy issues impacting Florida through the efforts of JMI.
For more information on JMI visit
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Trusted Solutions for a Better Florida: Founded in 1987, The James Madison Institute (JMI) is one of Florida’s oldest and largest nonpartisan, nonprofit research and educational organizations. JMI is dedicated to advancing such ideals as economic freedom, limited government, federalism, traditional values, the rule of law, and individual liberty coupled with individual responsibility. All JMI publications are available online at Twitter: @JmsMadisonInst – Facebook: