A disdain for democracy.

Just two days prior to signing a sweeping legislative package that sharply restricts voting rights in Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis found another way to stifle Floridians’ participation in democracy. ICYMI – on Tuesday, the Governor announced that the special election to fill the seat of Rep. Alcee Hastings, who passed away in April, will be held in January. Nope, that wasn’t a typo. While past vacancies in Florida have been filled in a matter of months, DeSantis has set a November primary date and a January general election, going against the advice of local election officials and denying the residents of Florida’s 20th District a chance to have their voice heard in the House of Representatives for almost a year.  

The Washington Post editorial board has some thoughts for Gov. DeSantis:

…[T]hanks to the cynical calculations of Florida’s Republican governor, voters in the state’s 20th Congressional District — primarily Black, primarily Democraticwill have to wait until next year to be represented in Congress. Rep. Alcee L. Hastings (D) died last month, but Gov. Ron DeSantis has set the general election for Jan. 11, with primaries in November.

“Please. It would be less insulting if he just came out and said he believes in democracy, but only for Republicans. It is clear from the experience of other states that it doesn’t take months and months for candidates to emerge and qualify for the ballot. Some local Florida election officials had urged a timely special election with primaries in September and the general election in November, but Florida law pretty much gives the governor a free hand.”
“The winner of the Democratic primary in the district that Mr. Hastings had represented since 1993 almost certainly will go on to win the general election. Mr. DeSantis clearly sees no reason to help House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) bolster the Democrats’ slim 218-212 majority. That about 800,000 Floridians will be deprived of representation for nine months apparently worries him not one bit. In fact, it meshes neatly with his larger agenda of suppressing the vote whenever possible for anyone but Republican voters. The thread running throughout is a disdain for democracy.”