This is hopeful:
As head of the Democratic Governors Association, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson sees Florida's gubernatorial race as one of the top five in the country."N.M. governor has eye on Florida".
"We're going to pour a lot of money in here. We're going to pour a lot of visits, polling, poll workers, campaign workers. ... The Republicans have had Florida for a long time, and we sense that Floridians want a change," Richardson said in a TV interview.
"Ms. Harris's fellow Florida Republicans, noting her dismal poll ratings, sound no less scathing than the Democrats in wishing she would go away. "Katherine Harris moves in ways so mysterious that the designs of the creator seem transparent by comparison," one G.O.P. consultant said. But it may be premature to count her out. After all, others have spent more than $10 million from a personal fortune to secure a Senate seat. And others have overcome such negatives as a campaign fund investigation for having had dinner with an influence-shopping contributor who turned out to be corrupt. Stranger things have happened in American politics. Alas." "Tomorrow Is Another Campaign" (via The Buzz ("The New York Times Editorial page weighs in on the Katherine Harris melodrama").
This explains a lot: "Harris tells Christian group she believes God wants her in public service". See also "Harris puts her faith `on the line'". And it is apparently a very forgiving God that wants Katherine in the U.S. Senate, as we are reminded that "Nearly a decade ago, the GOP Senate candidate pleaded ignorance to taking illegal contributions." "Harris' woes mirror those of '97".
Poor Little Rich Girl Tour
"Katherine Harris hopscotched South Florida Saturday, repeating the pledge to put her own $10 million in her Republican U. S. Senate race, but giving few details where the money was coming from or when it would be put in the campaign." "Katherine Harris visits South Florida, reaffirms $10 million pledge". See also "Harris Finds Friendly Crowd".
We Can Expect "Bruising GOP Governor Race"
In "Stock brouhaha may foretell bruising GOP governor race", Brian Crowley writes about how the Gallagher campaign stuck to its game plan in response to the "whisper campaign" about alleged insider trading..
"[W]hen Republican strategist Ed Goeas quit her campaign this week, the congresswoman lost more than an adviser with a knack for deciphering poll numbers. She lost a true believer." "True believer leaves Harris campaign".
"That leaves only one possible explanation: The secretary [of State Sue Cobb] was using the state's police authority to intimidate. It was an outrageous and improper abuse of power, and it should not be ignored." "Closed meeting can't be tolerated".
Bring It On
"Bush may not be on the ballot this year, but Floridians can still expect to see plenty of him this fall. The governor vowed last week to take on U.S. Rep. Jim Davis of Tampa and state Sen. Rod Smith of Alachua, the two leading Democratic candidates for governor, who have been hammering away at the FCAT as they campaign across Florida." "March Madness".
The Good News Is That Developers Appear To Be Doing Well
"Affordable housing crunch hits teachers".
He's Got A Point
After all, Jebbie is perhaps the most hypocritical of the self-proclaimed "personal responsibility" crowd:
Former Department of Corrections Secretary Harry Singletary blasted Gov. Jeb Bush last week for the recent scandals rocking the state's prison system."Blast from past".
In a letter obtained by the Orlando Sentinel, the Chiles appointee wrote, "I believe that the buck stops at the Governor, and he is personally responsible for this mess."
Singletary criticized Bush's corrections secretaries Michael Moore and more recently James Crosby, whom Bush fired last month.
Schultz on Katherine 16
"Katherine Harris shows what happens when you get greedy and reach for that 16th minute of fame."
As President Bush showed with his plan to privatize Social Security, you can spend lots of time and money, but it still comes down to what you're selling. If Katherine Harris really wants to blow $10 million on a vanity campaign for the Senate, she can't do it from the Fox News green room, and she can't do it just by calling Sen. Nelson "liberal" over and over. In the 16th minute, you have to be famous for more than being famous."The Great? No, Katherine The Sixteenth".
"At First Glance"
"At first glance, the HB 7041 Scholarship Program Accountability bill promises a breath of fresh air in Florida's ongoing controversy over using public tax revenues to pay for private-school education." "Legislature".
Promising New Columnist ...
at the Orlando Sentinel of all places. George Diaz writes:
As we mark the third anniversary of the invasion on Iraq this solemn morning, the rallying cry of "spreading freedom" no longer moves Americans to wag their tail and follow their alpha dog into battle."Bush bandwagon".
"Will the Legislature remedy the sins of the past and make Florida elections more accountable?"
It's been proven time and again that these machines are not secure -- and in a close election, rigging one or two terminals could tilt the entire election. Without a paper trail, there is no way to verify voting accuracy."Defending Democracy".
Jebbie Strides World Stage
"Bush called on Latin American government and business leaders Friday to help develop ethanol in an effort to diversify the region's energy sources and reduce reliance on oil from Venezuela and the anti-U.S. influence of its leader Hugo Chavez." "Jeb Bush: Promote Ethanol, Beat Chavez".
"Attorney General Charlie Crist could soon move one step closer to being governor -- thanks to the Florida Legislature. A measure expected to win Senate approval this week would place the attorney general's office right behind the lieutenant governor in order of succession, should the governor leave office or die." "Order of succession may change".
Dem Establishment Embraces Ex-GOoPer
"Faced with the Democratic leadership's embrace of an ex-Republican as its great hope, Palm Beach County teacher David Lutrin dropped out of the race to unseat U.S. Rep. Mark Foley, R-Fort Pierce. Party leaders are gaga for Tim Mahoney, a business executive who's been a Democrat for less than a year. Lutrin said he couldn't compete against the leadership's lust for Mahoney's deep pockets." "Ex-Republican prompts rival to quit U.S. House race".