Voting can be a daunting challenge so I've put together a helpful list to make your decisions easier. These are my personal recommendations and how I voted with my mail in ballot and I hope that you will follow my lead as I've already done the research to make your life easier. I have also provided a list from the Florida Democratic Progressive caucus on the proposed amendments on the ballot. This list was compiled by the caucus and republished here for your convenience. I agree 100% with their recommendations and research on these important amendments and encourage you to follow the same.
Vote for Governor: Andrew Gillum
I've had the pleasure of speaking with Andrew Gillum multiple times and I can proudly say that I endorse his candidacy for Governor. I voted for him in the Primaries because I felt he was the absolute best choice for Governor. I wasn't sure he was going to beat Levine or Graham, but he pulled it off. Andrew has a very charismatic and down to earth personality which will take him far. I support what Andrew is trying to do to help Floridians, he truly has their best interest at heart. Some of his positions are bold compared to middle of the road Democrats but if he can pull them off, everyone who lives in Florida will be winner.
Andrew Gillum has partnered up with Chris King and I think they will make a great team together. Chris has spent a good portion of his time helping to build affordable housing for people who really need it. The first time I met Chris, I knew he really loves to help people succeed, just like myself, so I knew we had a winner. Chris is very easy to talk with and a good listener too. Every time I've met with him, I felt a positive vibe. I have no doubt that he will boost the value that Andrew Gillum brings to Florida. It's time to bring Florida out of the Dark Republican Ages and into a new era where Citizens come before big business.
Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida’s Recommendations on the Proposed Amendments to the Florida Constitution
After weeks of research, endless hours of discussion, and a membership vote, the Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida has determined positions on the 13 Constitutional Amendments that will be on the November ballot.
A huge thanks to former State Senator Arthenia Joyner for sharing background information on the Constitution Revision Commission amendments (6-13). Those were particularly challenging because multiple issues (good and bad) were bundled together with confusing results.
A summary of each proposed amendment can be found below, with DPCF’s summary in parenthesis.
Please note — these will appear on all Florida ballots. Local municipalities may have additional questions.
2018 Ballot Amendments Recommendations
#1 – NO
Increases the amount of a home’s value exempted from property tax (Will force local governments to cut public services or raise local taxes)
#2 – NO
Makes the cap on non-homestead (2nd homes and commercial) property assessment increases permanent (Will continue to limit resources available for public services)
#3 – YES
Requires voter approval of casino gambling (Removes authority to expand gambling from the legislature and returns it to voters) - Comments by Jeff Fandl: Don't be fooled by ChooseMeNot3.com which falsely claims schools will lose money if you vote Yes. Floridians were scammed years ago to support the Florida lottery claiming that the money went to schools which was not true. The money goes to the Florida General fund and was used for anything and everything, it as never dedicated for schools. Do not let them deceive you a second time, vote Yes for amendment 3. ChooseMeNot3 is an organization sponsored by Las Vegas based MGM International Resorts, Jacksonville Greyhound Racing and South Florida Racing association. It has no interest in Florida's education system but rather self serving to protect their interest to bypass public approval of new gambling opportunities.
#4 – YES
Restores right to vote for most people with felony convictions upon completion of sentences (Gives 1.5 million Floridians the right to vote after paying their debt to society)
#5 – NO
Requires 2/3 vote of legislature to impose or increase tax or fee (Will tie the hands of future legislatures making it nearly impossible to address budget needs, such as teacher raises and natural catastrophes)
#6 – NO
Adds a Marsy’s Law (victims’ rights) to state constitution, increases judicial retirement age; prohibits judges from deferring to admin agencies to interpret law (Victims’ rights already protected in the Constitution; Eliminates an existing provision that protects the constitutional rights of the accused)
#7 – NO
Requires death benefits for first responders and military members, a supermajority vote for college fees, and adds state college system structure to constitution (3/4 majority vote to increase fees makes it very difficult to meet university needs)
#8 – NO
Establishes school board term limits; allows state to operate non-board established schools; requires civic literacy (DPCF opposes term limits; amendment takes authority for charter school approval and oversight from local school boards and gives it to Tallahassee politicians)
#9 – YES
Bans offshore oil and gas drilling and vaping in enclosed indoor workplaces (Concern for the environment overrides concern about putting vaping in the Constitution.)
#10 – NO
Prohibits counties from abolishing certain local offices, changes start date of legislative sessions, and adds an executive office and executive department to constitution (Takes away control granted to charter counties limiting ability to respond to local conditions)
#11 – NO
Repeals some obsolete language; repeals a provision saying that changes to a criminal statute are not retroactive (Impact of criminal statute portion is unclear and disputed. Other repealed provisions are already unenforceable or expired)
#12 – NO
Prohibits public officials from lobbying for compensation while in office and 6 years thereafter (Applied too broadly at local level; will not solve problems of money and influence in politics)
#13 – YES
Prohibits betting on dog races (Ends legal wagering on inhumane dog racing)