• 08/15/2018 10:02 AM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)

    Support for Statewide Candidates, Federal and State Legislative Candidates

    Membership Threshold Not Met on Gubernatorial Race

    GAINESVILLE — The Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus, representing the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to the Florida Democratic Party, announces its full list of endorsements for the August 28th primary election. Caucus membership voted on these endorsements at our Summer Conference in West Palm Beach on Saturday, July 28, and includes candidates and Constitutional amendments. The announcement was held to notify candidates.

    In the state’s most watched election — for governor — no candidate received the required two-thirds vote of eligible voting members participating to receive the endorsement. Utilizing a successive voting process whereby the candidate with the least amount of votes was eliminated each round, the final two candidates were Andrew Gillum and Gwen Graham. Neither secured the two-thirds threshold to win endorsement.

    Following is the full list of endorsed candidates this cycle:

    Endorsed July 28, 2018:


    CD-6: Nancy Soderberg

    CD-7: Rep. Stephanie Murphy

    CD-10: Rep. Val Demings

    CD-12: Chris Hunter

    CD-16: David Shapiro

    CD-19: David Holden

    CD-20: Rep. Alcee Hastings

    Gubernatorial & Cabinet

    Governor: No Endorsement

    Attorney General: Sean Shaw

    CFO: State Senator Jeremy Ring

    Commissioner of Agriculture: No Endorsement


    House District 55: Audrey Asciutto

    House District 89: James Bonfiglio

    House District 115: Dr Jeffrey Solomon

    House District 106: Sara McFadden

    Previously endorsed and already announced:


    US Senator Bill Nelson

    CD-3: Yvonne Hayes Hinson

    CD-5: Rep. Al Lawson

    CD-8: Sanjay Patel

    CD-9: Rep. Darren Soto

    CD-13: Rep. Charlie Crist

    CD-15: Andrew Learned

    CD-17: April Freeman

    CD-18: Lauren Baer

    CD-22: Rep. Ted Deutch

    CD-23: Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz

    CD-27: State Representative David Richardson


    House District 28: Lee Mangold

    House District 37: Tammy Garcia

    House District 49: Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith

    In addition, the state Caucus endorsed candidates recommended by local chapters. These include:

    Stonewall Democrats of Alachua County

    Senate District 8: Kayser Enneking

    House District 21: Amol Jethwani

    School Board: Rob Hyatt

    School Board: Tina Certain

    Dolphin Democrats (Broward County)

    Senate District 34: Gary Farmer

    House District 92: Paulette Armstead

    House District 93: Emma Collum

    House District 96: Saima Farooqui

    House District 97: Jared Moscowitz

    House District 98: Andrew Dolberg

    House District 105: Javier Estevez

    Hillsborough County LGBTA Democratic Caucus

    House District 59: Adam Hattersley

    House District 60: Debra Bellanti

    House District 63: Fentrice Driskell

    Commissioner District 4: Andrew Davis Hillsborough

    Lee County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus

    House District 76: David Bogner

    House District 78: Parisima Taeb

    School District Seat 4: Debbie Jordan

    Fort Myers City Council Seat 4: Christopher Pierce

    Pasco LGBTA Democratic Caucus

    County Commission District 2: Kelly Smith

    County Commission District 4: Brandi Geoit

    Stonewall Democrats of Pinellas County

    Senate District 16: Amanda Murphy

    House District 66: Alex Heeren

    House District 69: Jennifer Webb

    County Commission District 6: Amy Kedron

    School Board District 6: Matt Stewart

    Rainbow Ridge LGBTA Democratic Caucus of Polk County

    Senate District 22: Bob Doyel

    Senate District 26: Catherine Price

    House District 42: Barbara Cady

    County Commission District 4: Karen Cooper Welzel

    School Board District 3: Sarah Fortney

    Constitutional amendment positions approved by membership on July 28, 2018 are listed below. The Caucus had voted earlier to support Amendment 4, the Voter Restoration for Felons Initiative.

    The Caucus SUPPORTS:

    Amendment 3: Requires voter approval of casino gambling

    Amendment 9: Bans offshore oil and gas drilling and vaping in enclosed indoor workplaces

    Amendment 13: Prohibits betting on dog races

    The Caucus OPPOSES:

    Amendment 1: Grants an additional $25,000 homestead exemption for homes worth $125,000 or more.

    Amendment 2: Makes permanent what currently is a temporary cap of 10 percent on annual property value increases for vacation homes, apartments and commercial property, effectively limiting increases on tax bills. (2nd homes and commercial) property assessment increases permanent

    Amendment 5: Requires 2/3 vote of legislature to impose or increase tax or fee instead of a simple majority.

    Amendment 6: Adds a Marsy’s Law (victims’ rights) to state constitution, increases judicial retirement age; prohibits judges from deferring to administrative agencies to interpret law

    Amendment 7: Requires death benefits for first responders and military members, a supermajority vote for college fees, and adds state college system structure to constitution

    Amendment 8: Establishes school board term limits; allows state to operate non-board established schools; requires civic literacy

    Amendment 11: Repeals some obsolete language; repeals a provision saying that changes to a criminal statute are not retroactive

    The Caucus took NO POSITION on:

    Amendment 10: Prohibits counties from abolishing certain local offices, changes start date of legislative sessions, and adds an executive office and executive department to constitution

    Amendment 12: Prohibits public officials from lobbying for compensation while in office and 6 years thereafter.

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  • 07/25/2018 2:41 PM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)

    Fort Myers, FL - The Lee County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus, a Chapter of the Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus, and an arm of the Florida Democratic Party representing lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning and allied Democrats, announced its 2018 primary endorsements.

    'We are humbled by the outpouring of support from all of our candidates. We are very proud to support those campaigns that support the dignity, respect and equality of the LGBTQA community under the law." Caucus President Shawn Williams said "We will work hard to elect our endorsed candidates and look forward to working with them throughout this campaign season."

    Candidates receiving the Caucus endorsements include:

    Fort Myers City Council, Ward 4 - Christopher Pierce

    Lee County School Board, District 4 - Debbie Jordan

    Florida House of Representatives, District 76 - David Bogner

    Florida House of Representatives, District 78 - Parisima Taeb

    Candidates seeking endorsement filled out an extensive questionnaire on a range of issues. Those questionnaires were reviewed by the Campaign Committee, which made its recommendations to the membership. The Caucus’ members then voted to accept or deny the recommendation.

  • 05/31/2018 8:04 AM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)

    Gainesville FL — The Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus, an arm of the Florida Democratic Party representing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Democrats, announced its first round of endorsements for federal elections during the primary season.

    “Florida’s candidates and elected officials know that the LGBT community can be the margin of victory in their races, and that our members work hard to elect our endorsed candidates,” Caucus President Terry Fleming said. “In such a highly charged political year, our involvement has a definitive impact.”

    Candidates receiving the Caucus endorsement in this round include:

    US Senate – Senator Bill Nelson

    District 3 – Yvonne Hayes Hinson

    District 8 – Sanjay Patel

    District 9 – Congressman Darren Soto

    District 13 – Congressman Charlie Crist

    District 15 – Andrew Learned

    District 17 – April Freeman

    District 18 – Lauren Baer

    District 22 – Congressman Ted Deutch

    District 23 – Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz

    District 27 – State Representative David Richardson

    In addition, the Caucus voted to support Amendment 4, the Voting Rights Restoration for Felons Initiative.

    Candidates seeking endorsement filled out an extensive questionnaire on a range of issues. Those questionnaires were reviewed by the Campaign Committee, which made its recommendations to the membership. The Caucus’ members then voted to accept or deny the recommendation.

    “The Caucus also congratulates Congresswomen Kathy Castor and Lois Frankel for their uncontested victories,” Fleming said. “We look forward to working with them and all our endorsed candidates throughout the campaign season.”

  • 02/18/2018 3:27 PM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)


    February 18, 2018


    Stephen Gaskill, Communications Director 




    State Representative David Richardson Provides Florida Keynote At Leadership Dinner

    Fort Myers Meeting is March 9-11

    Presidential Politics on the Agenda

    Gainesville - Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), a rising star and national voice in the Democratic Party, will provide the keynote address at the Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus Winter Conference. The Caucus will hold its winter membership meeting in Fort Myers March 9 though 11, and Castro will provide remarks at the Leadership Dinner on Saturday, March 10.

    State Representative David Richardson, the first openly-gay member of the Florida Legislature, will also address the Leadership Dinner on the 2018 legislative session.

    The working meeting will feature candidates and elected officials from across Florida, GOTV training sessions, and presentations from Florida political and advocacy professionals.

    The conference is being held at the Holiday Inn Fort Myers Airport @ Town Center, 9931 Interstate Commerce Drive, Fort Myers, Florida. The Caucus will hold closed press social events on Friday evening and Sunday morning. The working day on Saturday, March 10 is open press. The full schedule will be released shortly.

    # # #

    The Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus represents the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to the Florida Democratic Party. We are a statewide organization, with more than a dozen local chapters around the state, from Tallahassee to Jacksonville to Miami-Dade -- and most major metropolitan areas in between. Our strength lies in the size of our organization and the ability of our local chapters and their individual members to stand up for equal rights, support candidates who support our community, and lobby for legislation and policies that recognize and strengthen our community. The Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus is chartered by the Florida Democratic Party and many of our members currently serve on Democratic Executive Committees across the state.

    # # #

  • 02/08/2018 6:00 AM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)

    FORT MYERS, FLORIDA (Feb. 8, 2018) — A moderated debate at Florida Gulf Coast University on Monday, February 19, will explore the topics of religious liberty, free speech and public accommodation law, mirroring oral arguments recently made to the U.S. Supreme Court in Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. vs. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. The debate begins at 6:30 pm in Edwards Hall. This event is free and open to the public. 

    The Supreme Court case centers on a Colorado cakeshop owner who refused to make a cake for the wedding ceremony of a same-sex couple, citing religious objections. The case will determine if the state’s public accommodations law can be applied to compel the cake maker to create expression that violates a sincerely-held religious belief.

    Bob Levy, chairman of the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank, will argue on behalf of the cakeshop owner’s First Amendment right to free speech and exercise of religion as a defense to refuse service to the same-sex couple. David Millstein, a volunteer attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union, will argue on behalf of the Colorado Civil Rights Commission and the protected civil rights of the same-sex couple.

    The outcome of this case will be among the most intensely monitored Supreme Court decisions to be delivered this session. Some legal experts see the potential for a decision in favor of the cakeshop owner to have broader implications beyond cake-making, including the scope to which other businesses, medical professionals and government agencies can refuse public accommodation or service to any legally protected class of persons based on a religious objection.

    The debate is sponsored by the LGBTQA Democratic Caucus of Lee County, Log Cabin Republicans of SWFL, FGCU Office of Multicultural Leadership and Development, Students for Liberty, SWFL Harmony Chamber of Commerce, Visuality, and Young Americans for Liberty. 

  • 09/21/2017 6:26 PM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)

    FORT MYERS, FL, September 21, 2017 — As a kick-off to LGBT Pride week in Southwest Florida, Greg Baird, a national lecturer on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights and equality, will present a lecture Sunday, October 1, titled “Disarming Hate & Bigotry: Building an Accepting & Inclusive Community.” The lecture is from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the theater at the Calusa Nature Center & Planetarium, 3450 Ortiz Avenue, Fort Myers.

    Baird is an acclaimed lecturer, writer and filmmaker who speaks to audiences across the country to promote understanding and acceptance for LGBTQ people, including addressing anti-LGBTQ bullying and violence. Baird will share stories about his experience coming out and living openly as a gay person, as well as discuss the current state of civil rights for LGBTQ people in the United States.

    The lecture will also include a short film directed and produced by Baird, “2:02 AM,” inspired by the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando last year that killed 49 people and injured 53 others, a majority of whom were LGBTQ young people. The film examines the impact of violence targeted at members of the LGBTQ community and how to respond by encouraging a more inclusive and accepting society.

    General admission is $20. Tickets to attend the lecture followed by a reception with wine and hors d’oeuvres from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. is $50. This event is hosted by the Lee County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus.

    To purchase tickets, visit

    For more information about Greg Baird, visit


  • 08/22/2017 8:30 PM | Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus (Administrator)

    August 22, 2017 – Fort Myers, Lee County, Florida - Whereas the Lee County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus was formed in 2017 to promote human rights, diversity, inclusion, and the respect of Florida's LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community;

    Whereas, as an arm of the Florida Democratic Party, the Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus declares its vision is to be "a voice that seeks to instill awareness of the freedoms of a democratic society, educate future leaders, support the community at large, and maintain an ongoing rapport and increasing viability with political entities"; 

    Whereas President Donald J. Trump's administration has taken actions intended to harm and minimize the contributions and participation of the LGBT community, including:

    announcing a reinstatement of the ban on transgender military personnel;

    filing a legal brief at a federal appeals court arguing that anti-gay discrimination is legal under federal law;

    reversing guidance from the Obama administration that protected transgender children from discrimination in public schools;

    appointing a Supreme Court justice, Neil Gorsuch, who opposes LGBT rights;

    failing to recognize Pride Month in June 2017;

    signaling that he would support the First Amendment Defense Act which would allow discrimination against LGBT people on a religious basis; and

    nominating Gov, Sam Brownback of Kansas, a vocal opponent of gay rights, as ambassador at large for international religious freedom;

    Whereas the president's erratic behavior and misguided, inaccurate and misleading statements create an environment of uncertainty for American leadership on the world stage; and

    Whereas the president's vocal support for white supremacist groups, organizations and individuals in the wake of the violence in Charlottesville represents a shameful stain on the presidency and makes all Americans less safe; now, therefore be it 

    Resolved by the Lee County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus

    1. urges Florida Members of Congress - Democrats and Republicans - to sign onto, support and push for passage of a Congressional motion to censure the President of the United States; 

    2. demands that Florida Members of Congress continue to forcefully speak out in opposition to the divisive words and actions of the Trump administration as a way to shine a light on and counter the dangerous environment being fostered; and

    3. demands that Florida Members of Congress introduce and support legislation requiring that transgender service members be allowed to serve openly in the military.

    Passed unanimously by the Lee County LGBTQA Democratic Caucus August 22, 2017

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"Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus" is a Section 527 Political Organization.

Lee County LGBTQ+ Democratic Caucus

27499 Riverview Center Blvd, Ste 137

Bonita Springs, FL  34134

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