Since 2002, daily Florida political news and commentary


UPDATE: Every morning we review and individually digest Florida political news articles, editorials and punditry. Our sister site, FLA Politics was selected by Campaigns & Elections as one of only ten state blogs in the nation
"every political insider should be reading right now."

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Welcome To Florida Politics

Thanks for visiting. On a semi-daily basis we scan Florida's major daily newspapers for significant Florida political news and punditry. We also review the editorial pages and political columnists/pundits for Florida political commentary. The papers we review include: the Miami Herald, Sun-Sentinel, Palm Beach Post, Naples News, Sarasota Herald Tribune, St Pete Times, Tampa Tribune, Orlando Sentinel, the Daytona Beach News-Journal, Tallahassee Democrat, and, occasionally, the Florida Times Union; we also review the political news blogs associated with these newspapers.

For each story, column, article or editorial we deem significant, we post at least the headline and link to the piece; the linked headline always appears in quotes. We quote the headline for two reasons: first, to allow researchers looking for the cited piece to find it (if the link has expired) by searching for the original title/headline via a commercial research service. Second, quotation of the original headline permits readers to appreciate the spin from the original piece, as opposed to our spin.

Not that we don't provide spin; we do, and plenty of it. Our perspective appears in post headlines, the subtitles within the post (in bold), and the excerpts from the linked stories we select to quote; we also occasionally provide other links and commentary about certain stories. While our bias should be immediately apparent to any reader, we nevertheless attempt to link to every article, column or editorial about Florida politics in every major online Florida newspaper.


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The Blog for Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year

    New Election Laws

    Florida GOP values on parade: "Early-voting hours will be trimmed, and the cap on spending in the race for governor will triple." "New laws governing elections take effect".

    What GOoPers Really Care About

    "The new year launches the latest installment in the slow death of the state's intangibles tax and heralds its likely final demise." "Intangibles tax is slowly dying".

    Voting Integrity

    "Democracy demands integrity":

    It seems so simple, so obvious. Elections should be fair and reliable. Voting machines should be accurate and failsafe. Elections officials should be careful and unbiased. Voters' interests should come first.

    Florida residents watched all these tenets crumble over the past five years. The 2000 election scandal focused at first on flawed recount procedures, with state officials stalling and partisan operatives rioting to stop vote-verifying procedures. Soon, attention turned to the infamous "purge list" that stripped rights from thousands of voters, many by mistake.

    National attention soon died down, but the problems continue. The state abandoned another voter-roll purge attempt in 2004, but the possibility of a repeat remains. Florida still clings to a lifetime voting ban for former felons who have paid their debt to society, refusing to abandon a counterproductive policy.

    New Laws Take Effect

    "New era dawning Jan. 1 in lobbyist-legislator relationship". See also "New law should temper 'in-kind' extravaganzas". Here's the reality:

    A loophole in the state's new law that keeps lawmakers from taking gifts from lobbyists allows them to solicit big money for committees.
    "Donations welcome, but 'gifts' forbidden".

    Looking Back

    "Taxes, elections and land use set to be 2006's biggest stories". See also "2005 was deadliest year on Florida roads".

    Looking Ahead

    "Out with Old, In with New".


    From The Buzz:

    In the Republican campaign for governor, Attorney General Charlie Crist has been leading Tom Gallagher in money-raising and most polls. But in a pointed year-end memo to key Gallagher fundraisers David Browning and Mark Guzzetta, Gallagher's campaign manager, Brett Doster, paints a rosy picture about the state of the race, while ripping Crist as a candidate controlled by lobbyists and fundraisers like " Donald Trump and personal injury lawyers."

    "We have met or exceeded all of our political and strategic goals," Doster reported. "Our candidate is in extremely good spirits, and support for our effort continues to grow daily. ... We cannot rest on our laurels, but I believe that we are beginning to see some panic from our primary opponents."

    Doster on Crist: "Our opponent continues to run an issueless campaign, devoid of substance. His early efforts to claim the role of heir apparent and front-runner have come up short as the public polls have tightened."
    "Gallagher camp paints rosy scene".

    Park Lake Five

    "They are slow, so homely they're cute and their hygiene leaves something to be desired. Yet Florida's gopher tortoises are developing a national following. Credit the Lake Park Five, who gave their lives for the cause. "Growth and the gopher tortoise".


    "The state and federal Everglades restoration effort is facing a growing financial crisis that threatens to doom the 30-year project as it enters its sixth year." "Everglades restoration effort in financial trouble".

    Surely He's Joking

    Troxler sees the governor's race as between Jim Davis and Tom Gallagher and Gallagher will win. He also predicts Katherine Harris beating Bill Nelson. Fortunately he was only 2 for 11 in predictions last year. "This year's crystal ball may provide clearer view" Mike Thomas is a little more sanguine in his predictions:

    Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher beats Charlie Crist in the Republican primary with hard-right, hardball tactics. This costs him the general election against Jim Davis, our next governor.

    Bill Nelson wins re-election after Jeb Bush refuses behind-the-scenes move to get him in the race to save Republicans from Katherine Harris.

    Jeb Bush succeeds in his devious plot to overthrow the class-size amendment.
    "Nostradamus or not, here's how 2006 looks".


    "The recommendation of Thomas Minkoff for a Pinellas judgeship raises the question: Is the process really apolitical?" "Judicial process, politics intersect".


    "Katherine Harris learned quickly how to get things done in D.C. But moving to the Senate may take some convincing." "From infamous to influential".

    Domestic Security and Florida's Economy

    "As Americans increasingly lose patience with the U.S. involvement in Iraq, tolerance also is wearing thin in Florida for domestic security policies that some say inhibit international trade, tourism and global exchange among students, researchers and business leaders." "National security policy creates economic termites in Fla. basement".

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