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Longtime Florida Lobbyist Barbara DeVane Addresses Being Asked To Leave Committee Meeting

Barbara Devane addressing a Roe v. Wade rally on the Capitol steps.
Nick Evans

Longtime lobbyist and familiar face in the Florida Capitol Barbara DeVane has seemingly seen it all during the decades she’s spent in the Process. But until this week, DeVane says she had never been asked to leave a committee meeting.

Ryan Dailey recently spoke with DeVane about an exchange with a legislator that led to her being asked to leave.

On Tuesday, a bill requiring minors to get parental consent before having an abortion was in the House Health Quality Subcommittee. Much of the public testimony was emotional. But it was an assertion by Republican Representative Jennifer Sullivan that prompted DeVane to speak out – breaking decorum rules. Committee chairwoman Colleen Burton then demanded she leave:

Sullivan: The majority of opposition we’ve heard today is from those who stand to financially benefit from these children moving forward with this procedure.

DeVane: That is not true

Burton: Excuse me, ma'am, I’m going to have to ask you to leave the committee room.

DeVane: You should ask her not to disparage –

Burton: Excuse me, sergeant, please remove the woman who’s speaking from the committee room.

Dailey caught up with DeVane on Thursday and asked her to recount the experience.

Ryan Dailey is a reporter/producer for WFSU/Florida Public Radio. After graduating from Florida State University, Ryan went into print journalism working for the Tallahassee Democrat for five years. At the Democrat, he worked as a copy editor, general assignment and K-12 education reporter.