Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has signed a bill designating a section of Cortez Boulevard in Hernando County as Rush Limbaugh Way, honoring the late conservative talk-radio icon. The renaming will take effect on July 1.
The legislation, known as HB 21, includes renaming 22 roads and bridges across the state, paying tribute to various individuals. Among them are Sally Ride, the first American female astronaut to venture into space, and Christa McAuliffe, a teacher and astronaut who tragically lost her life in the 1986 Challenger disaster. The NASA Causeway bridge will be renamed the “Dr. Sally Ride Memorial Bridge,” while the bridge over the Canaveral Barge Canal will be known as the “Christa McAuliffe Bridge.”
The bill passed the House with a vote of 87-25, with most Democrats opposing it, and received Senate approval with a vote of 38-2. Representative Tyler Sirois, a Brevard County House Republican, originally filed the bill, while Central Florida Republican Blaise Ingoglia sponsored the Senate measure.
Limbaugh, a long-time resident of West Palm Beach, Florida, was considered an American icon in conservative talk radio until his passing in 2021.
The decision to honor Limbaugh has sparked controversy, with some Florida Democrats expressing their opposition. Representative Angie Nixon, a Democrat from Jacksonville, criticized the move during the House floor debate, calling Limbaugh a racist.
Previously, when Limbaugh passed away, Governor DeSantis ordered flags to be flown at half-staff in his honor. However, not all jurisdictions complied with the directive. Then-Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, a Democrat who is now the chair of the Florida Democratic Party, refused to lower flags under her control, and local officials in Palm Beach County kept the flags at full height.
The renaming of Cortez Boulevard to Rush Limbaugh Way is set to go forward despite the controversy, highlighting the divided opinions surrounding Limbaugh’s legacy in Florida.