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Florida Legislature gets high marks from business advocacy group

One of the state's top business advocacy groups (and biggest campaign donors) is clearly very happy with the Florida Legislature.

In their annual report card on the recently completed legislative session, Associated Industries of Florida gave 101 of the 120 Florida House members the equivalent of a "A" grade. According to AIF, those 101 lawmakers voted at least 90 percent of the time with them on issues before the House. That group includes 35 members - all Republicans - who voted 100 percent of the time with AIF. The perfect scores included House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, and House Majority Leader Dana Young, R-Tampa.

"AIF thanks the Governor and the Legislature for once again making decisions that promote a healthy and competitive business climate in the State of Florida, and is proud to work with a Legislature where 35 of the lawmakers voted in favor of the business community 100 percent of the time,” said Tom Feeney, President & CEO of AIF.

The scores come in a year in which AIF and political action committees they control have donated more than $1.7 million to elected officials in state government, the political parties and other political action committees, many of which are affiliated with state legislators.

The average score for House members was 94 percent.

Fifteen House members received the equivalent of a B, voting between 80 to 89 percent of the time with AIF.

The lowest score in the House went to House Minority Leader Mark Pafford, D-West Palm Beach, who voted just 55 percent of the time with AIF.
The Florida Senate wasn't quite as favorable for AIF with only 11 of the 40 members receiving a 90 percent or higher ranking and no perfect scores. The highest score when to Sen. Alan Hays, R-Umatilla, who received a 96 percent ranking from AIF.

Twenty three members received scores between 80 and 89 percent.

The lowest ranked Senator was Sen. Eleanor Sobel, D-Hollywood, who voted 74 percent of the time with AIF.

The average score in the Senate was an 86 percent.