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Florida Democratic leader Fentrice Driskell meets with VP Harris

Driskell was one of five state legislators invited to the White House to talk about the future of abortion access
State Rep. Fentrice Driskell is seen at the site of the erased St. Joseph Aid Society Cemetery, also known as the Montana City Cemetery, on Thursday, April 7, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. She hears what the state can do about property owners who learn they live on a cemetery. Her erased cemetery bill died in the state senate but she hopes this new discovery can give her bill new life.
State Rep. Fentrice Driskell is seen at the site of the erased St. Joseph Aid Society Cemetery, also known as the Montana City Cemetery, on Thursday, April 7, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. She hears what the state can do about property owners who learn they live on a cemetery. Her erased cemetery bill died in the state senate but she hopes this new discovery can give her bill new life. [ ARIELLE BADER | Special to the Times ]
Published Jul. 8|Updated Jul. 8

Fentrice Driskell, the recently-elected leader of the Florida House Democrats, will be one of a handful of state legislators to meet with Vice President Kamala Harris this afternoon to discuss the future of abortion.

Driskell, a Tampa state representative, is the only legislator from Florida attending the meeting.

The roundtable with Harris will follow President Joe Biden signing an executive order protecting access to abortion.

The future of abortion in Florida is still up in the air. After a short-lived temporary injunction that was overturned by an appeal, Florida’s recently-passed 15-week abortion cutoff is the current law, but the lawsuit against it is ongoing. Gov. Ron DeSantis has remained quiet on what could be next for the state.

Driskell said she hopes to talk about Florida’s 15-week law, and the lack of exceptions for rape or incest, with the vice president this afternoon. She said she also hopes to discuss a broader national strategy about what the White House can do to protect patients who will travel to other states for abortions or who receive abortion medication in the mail.

”We want to make sure she doesn’t suffer any civil or criminal penalties for exercising her choice over such a personal and private decision,” Driskell said.

Along with Driskell, state legislators from Indiana, Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska will join Harris for the discussion, which can be viewed at 4 p.m. at whitehouse.gov/live/.

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