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Florida Democratic Senate candidate Val Demings appeared to try to convince voters not to think too much about inflation during a recent speaking engagement, claiming constitutional issues like abortion are more important.
During a virtual program hosted by the Florida Democratic Party Jewish Caucus, Demimgs was asked what “the number one issue” was that she wants to focus on. While inflation was not at the top of her list, she did begin her answer by referencing it.
“Give me a little while to go around the fence here to answer your question, because what we’re seeing with inflation, what we’re seeing with the price of goods and services, gas at the pumps- of course, people are feeling that every day. But let’s kind of tuck this away over here,” said Demings, who will face incumbent Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., in November.
The Senate hopeful and current House member then pointed to the Inflation Reduction Act, claiming that it “will help tremendously with some of those issues,” even though studies and even far-left Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., have said it will not do much of anything to solve the problem of inflation.
Having set the inflation issue aside, Demings then answered the question by saying that her big focus is “the threat to constitutional rights,” citing the Supreme Court’s recent decision overturning Roe v. Wade,. The ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization reversed the Court’s previous position that abortion was a constitutional right.
“What I see, this former police chief, as the biggest threat facing our nation right now is the threat to constitutional rights. And along with that comes this effort to divide us, not to unite us, when we see, for example, Roe v. Wade that passed 49 years ago, and then see the efforts – effortlessly – to just overturn that ruling, to take away a woman’s constitutional right to choose, constitutional right to privacy.”
U.S. Rep. Val Demings, asked what her number one issue is, pointed to constitutional rights and abortion, not inflation. (John McCall/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP) (Associated Press)
To those who may say they are not concerned about abortion, Demings said they should be.
“Don’t do that,” she said. “Discrimination of any kind, we have to call it out. We can never tolerate it. Because it might be on somebody else’s street today, but if we create a belief that discrimination over here is okay, believe me, it’ll be on your street tomorrow.” Demings then pointed to Justice Clarence Thomas’s concurring opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, in which he supported reviewing other cases that recognized other rights not specified in the Constitution, such as gay marriage, the right to engage in private, consensual sex acts, and the right of married couples to get contraceptives.
Fox News reached out to the Demings campaign about why she framed her answer the way she did. In a response, a campaign spokesperson did not address that question, but they did stress that Demings is concerned about both inflation and abortion.
In a statement, the spokesperson noted that Demings is “the daughter of a maid and a janitor,” and this “knows inflation is an important issue.” The statement went on to tout legislation Demings supported “to help lower the price of goods, create American jobs, and lower energy and healthcare costs,” which the spokesperson said Rubio opposed.
A Fox News poll released earlier this month showed that inflation remains voters’ number one issue, with 41% citing it as the most important for their vote. Abortion was a distant second with 14% saying it was their top concern.