The past Saturday, Florida House Representative Anna Eskamani endorsed a divisive Independence Day email message sent out by the City of Orlando. Eskamani’s approval of the message came after the City of Orlando apologized for the original message, which was critical of the United States.
The original email published on July 1 – which has since been deleted from Orlando’s official Twitter account – stated, “A lot of people probably do not want to celebrate our nation right now, and we can’t blame them. When there is so much division, hate, and unrest, why on earth would you want to have a party celebrating any of it?”
Christina Pushaw, the spokesperson for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, replied to the message. Pushaw tweeted, “Yikes. City of Orlando, is this your official position on our country and on 4th of July?”
On July 2, the City of Orlando deleted the divisive message and apologized in a tweet. The apology stated, in part, “The City of Orlando sincerely regrets the negative impact our words have had on some in our community. We understand these words offended some of our residents, which was not our intent. … ”
However, Rep. Anna Eskamani – who represents part of Orlando in the Florida House – took the opportunity to endorse the original message. Eskamani replied to the City of Orlando apology by tweeting, “Y’all do not need to apologize – your first email captured the tone of how many Americans (and Orlandoans) are feeling right now. It’s ok not to be ok.”
Eskamani is one of the most progressive members of the Florida House and pushes an aggressive agenda related to LGBTQ+ and abortion issues. During the debate over the Parental Rights in Education bill this past legislative session, Eskamani called supporters of the legislation homophobic.
Eskamani’s sentiment related to the July 4th holiday comes days after President Biden was critical of the U.S. Supreme Court while speaking at the NATO summit in Madrid, Spain.
Biden stated that the “outrageous behavior” of the Supreme Court – referring to the Court’s recent decision related to Roe v. Wade– is “the one thing that has been destabilizing” for the United States.
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Steve Stewart is a senior contributor at The Florida Capital Star.