Here is a running compilation of Independence Day messages from Florida’s elected officials and politicians:
U.S. Senator Marco Rubio offers this video.
Former Governor Charlie Crist:
“Today we celebrate our Founders’ historic step towards the creation of a nation unlike any the world had seen – one founded on the promise of liberty, equality, and opportunity for all Americans.
“Nowhere does this promise shine brighter than Florida, which for generations has been a beacon to people from other nations looking to start a new life. As we celebrate, we must also remember the men and women of the Armed Forces who risk their lives every day to ensure our continued freedom, as well as Florida’s thousands of veterans who have served our country with honor and courage.
“I hope all Floridians – particularly our veterans and their families – enjoy a wonderful Fourth of July in the greatest state in the greatest nation in the world.”
Gubernatorial candidate Nan Rich:
“Happy Independence Day to you, and to Americans celebrating all over the world.
“Like many of you, I’ll be spending part of today participating in a parade, enjoying the company of friends and family, and celebrating our independence with fireworks tonight!
“But I hope we also spend at least a moment today thinking not just about the freedoms our founders fought so hard for, but also what they expected in return.
“The principle that launched the American Revolution was simply this – the people should have a say in how and by whom they are governed. For 238 years, people around the world have looked to the Declaration of Independence for inspiration, and they continue to find it.
“The obligation that comes with our right to choose our government is that we actually make a choice – that we vote. The strength of our democracy depends on our willingness to participate in it.
“Have a safe and happy 4th. I hope to see you on election day!”
Florida Democratic Party chairwoman Allison Tant:
“Today, families, friends, and neighbors come together to celebrate the founding of our nation and the birth of a new form of government — of the people, by the people, for the people. America is a promise handed down by each generation since the Founding Fathers, that we all have the freedom to pursue our dreams and the responsibility to help others achieve theirs.
“As we celebrate, let us remember the brave men and women of our nation’s Armed Forces — those who have fought for our rights, those who have been wounded in war, and those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. We honor them all.
“I hope all Floridians — and all Americans — enjoy this Forth of July in the greatest democracy the world has ever known.”
Attorney General Pam Bondi:
“Let us celebrate this Independence Day by appreciating the values of our Founding Fathers who built this great country that we live in. As Americans, we must always appreciate the freedom, opportunities, equality and justice that we enjoy each day. These liberties were established and defended by generations of brave men and women. As we celebrate our independence, let us all reflect on the military members who have served and continue to serve in our Armed Forces. Their tremendous courage and sacrifice has given us freedom.”
Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater:
“As we approach Independence Day, let us remember and appreciate all that was sacrificed 238 years ago so that America could escape religious and economic oppression and be able to experience the freedom to which we’ve become accustomed as a nation. John Adams envisioned that this anniversary would forever be “solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with shews, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other from this time forward forever more.”
“It is my wish that all Floridians have a safe and happy Independence Day filled with joy and appreciation for our great nation and its freedom.”
Congressman Ander Crenshaw:
“On Independence Day, we will fly flags, watch fireworks displays, and gather with friends and family for cookouts to commemorate the birth of a great nation. In these festivities, let us not forget that the United States of America’s freedoms are the envy of the world, earned for us by our men and women in uniform.
“Godspeed to the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines who have served, fought, and given their lives so we may enjoy the liberties and values of the greatest country on earth. They deserve our thanks and praise for a selfless devotion to country.
“As one of 15 Members and the only Floridian on the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, my commitment to them is an unwavering fight to provide the resources they need to protect our national security at First Coast military bases and around the world. It’s an honor to serve them on the Fourth of July and every day!”
Congressman Ron DeSantis:
“Many countries celebrate the day marking their independence as a nation, but no nation’s declared independence rivals the significance of July 4, 1776.
“Writing in 1792, then-Congressman James Madison explained the importance of American independence to the cause of liberty:
“In Europe, charters of liberty have been granted by power. America has set the example . . . of charters of power granted by liberty. This revolution in the practice of the world, may, with an honest praise, be pronounced the most triumphant epoch of its history, and the most consoling presage of its happiness.”
“Prior to the American Revolution, the supremacy of the state was the default condition of political life. Some individuals enjoyed certain liberties, but such liberties were granted as a courtesy of the ruling class, not possessed as a matter of right. The prerogatives of the rulers trumped the liberty of the people.
“The American revolutionaries turned this firmly established practice on it head. Under the philosophy of the Declaration of Independence, political power ultimately resides with the people, who enjoy natural rights endowed by God and superior to the authority claimed by self-selected civil authorities. Legitimate governments derive their authority from the consent of the governed; the people loan government authority so as to safeguard the liberty they already possess. This means government is the servant, not the master, of the people.
“Happy Independence Day!”
Congressman David Jolly:
“This weekend, as you gather with your loved ones to celebrate the anniversary of our nation’s independence, let us remember just how lucky we are to live in the home of the free because of the brave.”
Congressman Dan Webster:
“Within the Declaration of Independence, our forefathers based the birth of our country on principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. These rights, granted by our Creator, form the foundation for our freedoms and the heritage that has made us the greatest nation on earth.
“The American story is one of resilience, strength, and grace. As we celebrate Independence Day, we remember the generations of men and women who have endured hardships and struggles to protect our freedom. We honor their memory, hold fast to their principles, and aspire to continue their legacy.”
Congressman Ted Yoho:
“Carolyn and I would like to wish everyone a happy and healthy Independence Day. Thanks to the bravery, blood and sacrifice of those who came before us we now live in the greatest nation on earth. Thank you to all who have, do, and will serve for preserving the legacy of freedom started on this day in 1776.”
Congressional candidate Gwen Graham:
“We’re taught from a young age about the historical significance of our country’s struggle for independence, but it’s hard to understand just how incredible it was.
“From a young age I’ve seen up close how our democracy has thrived, but we are reaching a crossroads. People are having trouble getting along and working together for the common good. Even at the beginning of our country’s history, there were differing opinions on how things should be done, but our Founding Fathers came together and made the United States what it is today.
“It is our job to rekindle that flame of cooperation and trust. As President Kennedy once said ‘Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.’ We are that future, and on our Independence Day as we enjoy our time with friends and family, we should think on what we can do to take on the responsibility of the direction of our country.”
State Senator Thad Altman, via Twitter:
“Thank you to all of the brave service men and women who defend our country and freedom. #“
State Senator Lizbeth Benacquisto offers this well-done, well-written video.
State Representative Larry Ahern:
We are truly blessed to live in the United States of America, a nation that celebrates and loves freedom. The voices of the governed operate the levers of democracy, overseeing and responding to the events everywhere – from City Hall to the White House. The rest of the world marvels at the peaceful transition of power at every level, through the consent of the governed.The founders of our country fought a grueling battle for freedom, risking everything they had, especially their lives, when they declared our independence from Great Britain 238 years ago. To rise in revolution against the preeminent military power of the world, in search of liberty and the exercise of rights handed down from God alone, it took extreme courage and conviction in these fundamental beliefs. In the preamble of the Declaration of Independence, it says it straight from the heart where it is eloquently declared:We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.While today’s society is much different from that of two centuries ago, there are reasons why the United States Constitution is the world’s longest enduring written constitution in history. The vision of our founders and their concepts of freedom, a representative government, and opportunity for all citizens continues. Our country has stood strong and defended our rights and our freedom when Lady Liberty calls.This holiday weekend, we will celebrate the birth of our nation with fireworks, food, friends and family. There are many who have sacrificed and continue to sacrifice in defense of our beliefs and way of life. Our gratitude goes to those serving in harm’s way and to all those who have worn the red, white and blue. Please take a few moments to reflect on what does freedom mean to you.
Happy Independence Day! God bless you and may God bless America!
State Representative Eric Eisnaugle, via Twitter:
“Happy Birthday America! I feel so blessed to live in a country founded upon freedom, opportunity, and personal responsibility.”
State Representative Matt Hudson:
“Happy Independence Day! Today we celebrate our exceptional republic that was founded 238 years ago and pay tribute to the patriots that fought for our nation’s Independence. Thank you to our veterans and military service members for securing the freedoms and liberties that we enjoy today.
“I hope that you enjoy today’s festivities with your family! Stay safe!”
State Representative Kathleen Peters:
“I just wanted to take a brief moment on the day we celebrate the birth of our great nation, to encourage you to spend time remembering those who stood firm and built a solid foundation for our country. The brave founders of our country risked their lives for values we often take for granted – liberty, equality, and representative government.“And most certainly, we can never forget our military families who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom.“I wish you and your family a safe and very happy 4th of July.”
“I will like to wish everyone a Happy 4th. Please keep safe and enjoy your time with your friends and family. I will also like to salute those who fought to give us this freedom. As an Army veteran it gives me great pride to celebrate this day. Thank you!”
State House candidate David Kearns:
“This Fourth of July we need to remember our freedoms.“Particularly, we need to remember we have the freedom to do what is right, a freedom which is seldom exploited to the fullest in this state or this country. Doing what is right involves removing the specter of endless war, and endless dependence on fossil fuel.“These fuels pollute the environment, destroy our amicable relations with other nations, and – owing to their nature – have a limited future. Peak oil is here.“In my district, we have the perfect opportunity to blend industry, government and education for the purpose of creating an alternative-energy-based researched triangle. Something I am very interested in pursuing as a future member of the legislature.“The current suite of legislators from my area have no interest in pursuing such a worthwhile goal. Florida is the Sunshine State, for a reason: plenty of sunshine.“We need to take advantage of it. We will be opening up a new industry which is sorely needed in this economy.“Independence hard fought, hard won, should mean independence from all forms of tyranny. We must never forget their sacrifice. We must put that opportunity into action.”
State House candidate Chris Latvala on “The 56 Men Who Committed Treason” here.
State House candidate Scott Sturgill with “Today, I toast Kyle Carpenter” here.
State House candidate Bill Young:
“The 4th of July is a great American holiday for many reasons. It is a time for families to join together in remembrance of past times and it is a time for friends and neighbors to celebrate over a backyard BBQ. It is also a time where we pay thanks to our forefathers who founded this country with a vision of liberty, freedom, and prosperity for generations to come. Now here we are 238 years later with a storied history and the greatest nation on earth.
“We are blessed to have the liberties we do in this country and we must remember those liberties do not come free. This is why we honor those who have served this country. Our uniformed service members and our veterans have dedicated their lives to protecting the freedoms we enjoy at any cost and they should be forever thanked.
“Without their bravery we would not have the opportunities we have today.
“There are plenty of activities for you and your family in the community this extended holiday weekend. Bay News 9 has put together a list of great events throughout the Bay Area, and News Channel 8 has a great list of locations where you see fireworks as well.
“While you are out enjoying the long weekend please take a moment to patronize a small business, thank a veteran for their service, and cherish your friends and family.
“We should always remember that freedom is the chance to do better and I hope that we all aspire to do so.”
Pinellas GOP chairman Michael Guju:
“Let us all salute the spirit of America as we celebrate the birthday of our nation and thank God for our wonderful gift of freedom.”