Incumbent Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto is focusing on newly enacted legislation in a new advertisement.
The 30-second spot — dubbed “Good Samaritan” — concentrates on a bill signed into law earlier this year. The measure, sponsored by Benacquisto in the Senate, allows people to break into a vehicle to rescue a distressed person or an animal left unattended.
The bill was signed into law on March 8. It went into effect immediately.
“Florida sunshine, it can be beautiful, but it can also be deadly. In Florida, every year people and pets die when guardians inadvertently leave them in sweltering heat,” the Fort Myers Republican says in the new campaign advertisement. “And since government can be short on common sense, it used to be a crime for good Samaritans to rescue people and pets they saw trapped in the heat. But I fixed that — because common sense solutions save lives and protect our families.”
Under the Good Samaritan Act, a person can’t be held liable if they forcibly enter a car to remove a child, elderly person, disabled adult or pet from danger.
“This law helps prevent senseless tragedies when children and pets are left in a car in the sweltering heat,” she said in a statement Tuesday. “Now Good Samaritans can act without fear of being sued for doing the right thing to save lives, and I am proud to bring this message to the people of Southwest Florida.”
Benacquisto is running for re-election in Senate District 27. She’ll face Republican Jason Revel Maughan in the Aug. 30 Republican primary. No Democrat has filed to run for the seat.