Editorial: Silvers’ freshman record merits another term in state House

Updated Aug 02, 2018
  • By The Palm Beach Post Editorial Board
David Silvers

It’s not easy for a freshman legislator from the minority party to get a bill passed. But in his first stint in the Florida House of Representatives, David Silvers did just that. More than once.

He sponsored a bill to cut down on the inhumane practice of sending children to psychiatric facilities via the Baker Act; incorporated into another bill, it was signed by Gov. Rick Scott into law in 2017.

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He co-sponsored a bill that requires a pharmacist to register the filling of an opioid prescription by the end of the business day in which the medication is provided so people can’t go pharmacy shopping; that bill, too, was approved by the governor in 2017.

And he sponsored another bill, signed by the governor this year, that allows high school students to receive credit for pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs that prepare them for the workforce.

If only for these successes, Silvers deserves another term. The Post endorses him in the Democratic primary for House District 87, a jigsaw-puzzle shaped square of central Palm Beach County stretching from the southwest section of West Palm Beach down to the suburbs west of Lake Worth.

Silvers is challenged by Edgardo Hernandez, 32, an attorney who runs his own practice in Palm Springs. Campaigning, in English and Spanish, he is trying to reach voters whom he says have been neglected.

“It feels like if you don’t have money and you’re not wealthy, you’re ignored, and that’s how a lot of people in my community feel,” he told the Post Editorial Board.

Hernandez’ platform includes abolishing private prisons, raising the minimum wage, expanding access to health care, boosting solar energy, fighting for affordable housing, tightening gun regulations and increasing education funding.

Silvers, 39, president of a Boca Raton book development and licensing business, is outspending Hernandez by nearly 20-to-1 and has amassed a daunting list of endorsements.

If given a second term, he says he would concentrate on mental health issues, particularly those affecting children, which, if left unaddressed, can create serious problems in adulthood. He pledges to push for funds to put a full-time mental health counselor in every Florida school and to mandate a mental-health curriculum.

Silvers also lists affordable housing and education reform as key issues. Saying he was powerfully affected by meeting with parents of slain students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, he backs strengthening the state’s gun laws.

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Read all of The Post’s endorsements online at www.MyPalmBeachPost.com/2018-endorsements.