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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Florida lawmakers react to Gadhafi's death



Florida lawmakers react to the reported death of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lethinen, R-Miami: “Tyranny, oppression, and violence defined Qaddafi’s time in power. In addition to his brutal treatment of the Libyan people, he is also responsible for attacks that killed Americans and led to Libya’s designation as a state sponsor of terrorism by the U.S. State Department. ... Libya’s future must be marked by the establishment of a democratic government which is tolerant, inclusive, and free from extremist influence. The Libyan people must seize this opportunity to realize their democratic aspirations and not squander it through factional fighting over the political spoils. The new leaders must demonstrate a commitment to working with the U.S., and to securing control over dangerous weapons and rooting out extremist groups. "

Sen. Marco Rubio: "Justice has been done today. For decades, Muammar Gaddafi terrorized the Libyan people, bankrolled international terrorism and spread instability among its neighbors. He masterminded numerous terrorist attacks that resulted in the death of hundreds of fellow Americans. We are impressed with the tenacity of the Libyan people in reclaiming their freedoms and honor the service of American and NATO forces that courageously assisted on this endeavor.  Gaddafi has now joined the list of failed and disgraced tyrants that have faced justice from their own people. We still have a long and arduous road ahead as we partner with the free Libyan people to build a more prosperous and democratic future."

Rubio had a different tone with FOX News, saying credit should got to the French and British.

Sen. Bill Nelson: "With Libya’s dictator reported dead, it’s very important that we help the transitional government secure and destroy weapons stockpiles." (from Twitter)

Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar: “After forty-two years of repression and violence, justice has finally been served.  Qaddafi’s regime of intimidation, violence, and lack of respect for human life was reprehensible, and cheated generations of Libyans out of their basic human rights. The international community must remain vigilant against dictators such as Qaddafi. I hope that his demise will send a strong message to all others employing such violence and repression that good will always prevail over evil. Now the Libyan people can continue to transition their nation to one that embraces freedom and peace and protects the rights of all people. We must continue to stand with the people of Libya as they move forward in a post-Qaddafi era.”

Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor: “Many Libyans and innocent citizens world-wide suffered greatly because of Gadhafi, so it is a relief to hear that this tyrant can no longer perpetrate acts of terrorism against his own people and that the oppressive Gadhafi regime is no more. Now, the world community should be focused on ensuring that Libya transforms into a free and democratic state absent of the extremist and hostile elements that it has been plagued by for so long."

Rep. Steve Southerland, R-Panama City: “While I have serious concerns about the Obama Administration’s decision to launch Libyan air strikes without seeking the constitutionally-mandated approval of Congress, there is no denying that Qaddafi was a tyrant and a terrorist.  His death marks a new beginning for the Libyan people and I am hopeful that Libya’s transitional council will dedicate itself to increasing freedom and seeking peace.”

[Last modified: Thursday, October 20, 2011 5:56pm]


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