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As many communities were preparing for Tea Party Rallies, a group of 30 FreedomWorks activists in Florida under the leadership of Field Coordinator John Hallman, decided to take it a step further by travelling to Tallahassee to meet with legislators in person. FreedomWorks activists came from all over Florida to deliver a message to legislators in person; "lower taxes, reduce regulations, and let the free market work!" The day started with activists being briefed on the most crucial issues facing Florida, including property insurance, telecom reform, tax hikes on everything from cigarettes to the internet, spending caps, property tax reductions, and judicial reforms. House Majority Leader Adam Hasner also spoke to the group to thank them for taking time to lobby legislators face-to-face. Majority Leader Hasner stressed the importance of citizen action to drive policy, and the effectiveness of activists taking time to come to Tallahassee. He also told the group that conservative House members were united to stop all tax hikes and bring consumer choices to property insurance and telecom.
After the briefing, activists took the limited government message to their individual representatives and senators, also visiting Leadership and their staff. The group met with the Legislative Director for Senate President Jeff Atwater for a 30 minute meeting, where one at a time each activist expressed their concerns with issues such as the government take-over of the property insurance industry, egrigious tax hikes, and opening up the state's telecom marketplace. By the end of the meeting, the staffer commented; "I have heard you loud and clear and will take your concerns to President Atwater". She also commented that it was good to hear from citizens who believe in freedom as opposed to the daily assault they see every day from special interests groups wanting bigger government. The group focused on visiting key leadership in the Senate, and met with legislative directors for Senator Mike Fasano and Finance and Tax Chairman Thad Altman. Senator Ronda Storms took time from a committee meeting to come out and meet with activists and hear their concerns as well.
FreedomWork's activists personally delivered leave-behind forms detailing FreedomWorks top issue priorities in Florida to all 40 Senate offices and many of the 120 Representatives' offices during a day where legislators heard from the limited government movement loud and clear.
Check-out some fo the great pictures from the day's activities!