Smith Gaining Ground?
Adam Smith says "Jim Davis, don't look behind you":
U.S. Rep. Jim Davis for months has cast himself as the inevitable Democratic nominee for governor, the guy leading in early polls and fundraising, and winning the backing of Democratic giants like former Sen. Bob Graham.Much more here.
Davis may be the frontrunner, but his mantle of inevitability is looking increasingly thin. All the momentum in recent months has been with state Sen. Rod Smith, whom Davis has been unable to shake. Consider:
Smith is far outpacing Davis in labor endorsements, a potential force in Democratic primaries. By all accounts, Smith would have won full endorsements from the teachers union and state AFL-CIO had those unions not changed their rules to require two-thirds support for an endorsement. Some local affiliates will still push hard for Smith.
Smith so far has nearly kept pace with Davis in money-raising, despite losing crucial fundraising weeks because rules bar lawmakers from raising money during the legislative session. Through March 31, Davis had raised $2.2-million to Smith's $1.9-million.
Along these same lines, "Miami Congressman Kendrick Meek rebuffed a fellow congressman and endorsed state Sen. Rod Smith of Alachua in the Democratic primary for governor Monday, saying Smith is better equipped than his rival, U.S. Rep. Jim Davis of Tampa, to win over voters in a red state controlled by a Republican Legislature." "Meek gives support to Sen. Rod Smith" (However, Davis "has received the support of four other Florida Democrats in Congress: Reps. Alcee Hastings of Miramar, Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Weston, Corrine Brown of Jacksonville and Robert Wexler of Boca Raton.") See also "Reps. Meek, Boyd endorse Smith for governor", "Boyd and Meek for Smith" and "2 lawmakers endorse Smith for governor".
Regarding the labor endorsement: "AFL-CIO won't back Davis, Smith".
"Christ for Crist?"
"A reverend who introduced Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist during a breakfast with other pastors Monday said the Lord came to him in a dream two years ago and told him Crist would be the state's next governor."
The Rev. O'Neal Dozier, pastor of the Worldwide Christian Center in Pompano Beach, said that before the dream he did not know Crist, nor had Crist made known his plans to run for governor."Jeb!" was asked about the grand pronouncement:
"The Lord Jesus spoke to me and he said 'There's something I want you to know,'" Dozier said. "'Charlie Crist will be the next governor of the state of Florida.'" ...
"I introduce to you, as the Lord Jesus has said, the next governor of the state of Florida, Charlie Crist," Dozier said.
Bush, who appointed Dozier to a group that nominates judges in South Florida, didn't directly respond to the remark, but praised Dozier."Christ for Crist?"
"A U.S. Interior Department inspector general's report claims Sen. Bill Nelson went 'condo shopping' with a high-ranking National Park Service employee in 2002 and asked 'if the trees could be cut' near a condominium he was interested in purchasing." "Condo hunt scrutinized". See also "Sen. Nelson says he never asked if trees could be cut".
Stupid Statement of The Week
Troxler's column today:
"Everywhere else in the world," explains state Rep. Joe Pickens, R-Palatka, "people are paid according to their performance, not according to their longevity."Ahem ... Joe, what about the Florida House and Senate; and the Governor as well. In fact, a relatively small number of jobs are paid on so-called "merit".
"He has been eating a lot"
"It's one thing to have someone notice your weight. It's a whole other thing to have your brother, leader of the free world, poke fun at it." "Picking on Little Brother". See also "President notices little brother is still growing".
"The state loses nothing in giving Scripps more time. It only ensures a better formula for success." "Scripps".
"U.S. Rep Alcee Hastings wins eighth term".
Hartage and Stuart have company in the CD 13 Democrratic primary: "The dynamics of the U.S. House District 8 race against incumbent Ric Keller, R-Orlando, were changed at the 11th hour when Democratic candidate Alan Grayson joined the race. Grayson, a millionaire attorney whom The Wall Street Journal described as waging a one-man war against contractor fraud in Iraq, brings a personal fortune that could upset the campaign war chest balance that once had Keller clearly on top financially."
"On the Republican side, Keller can no longer assume he will be the party nominee for the general election, with Republican businesswoman Elizabeth Doran in the race." "A Democrat with big bucks".
Here's an idea
Troxler has an idea:
Every public schoolteacher in the state of Florida should switch to the Republican Party, with the express intent of stacking that party's primary elections with as much pro-public-school bias as possible."If you can't beat 'em, join 'em and change their tune".
After all, what are teachers going to accomplish by staying Democrats? They have no obvious preference between the two Democratic candidates, Jim Davis and Rod Smith. There's no risk of the party nominating somebody the teachers won't like.
On the other hand, there most definitely is the risk that, once again, the Democrats will nominate a nice guy (think Buddy MacKay in 1998 or Bill McBride in 2002) who gets creamed by a better-known Republican in November. In that case, the teachers will once again be on the losing side.
Do you think this is crazy? Sorry. Just trying to think outside the box, as the saying goes. Now, about those labor unions ...
"Jeb!" Suddenly Too Busy to Meet
After the kerfluffle over "Jeb!" scheduling a meeting with incumbent Sen. Alex Villalobos' GOoPer challenger, "Bush didn't meet with Miami-Dade School Board member and Florida Senate candidate Frank Bolanos after all on Monday due to a scheduling change." "Bush-Bolanos Meeting Cancelled". Jebbie's flacks claim it was a scheduling change; let's see if it is rescheduled.
Adams Killed In Accident
"Car crash kills former Lt. Gov. Tom Adams".
Several days ago Adam Smith penned, "Briber paid for 2nd meal for Harris", about Harris' difficulty in being forthright about her gifts from defense contractors for whom she did favors. Today, Jeremey Wallace follows up with "Harris, Wade dined".
Mel Avoids "National Language" Issue
After sidestepping the "the politically thorny, emotionally divisive question of whether to make English the "'national language,'" by getting out of town and avoiding the vote ("Senators Go Own Ways On English Bill"), Mel Martinez found an audience he might be able to handle, seventh graders. "Seventh-graders question Sen. Martinez on immigration". Mel nevertheless continued to sidestep the question:
"Is English going to be the national...?" asked a student named Sean, wearing tousled hair and a blue shirt. Before he could finish, the senator broke in.Notice how Mel cut the kid off, avoiding (yet again) telling us whether he supports the effort "to make English the "'national language'".
"English is the national language," Martinez said.
Perhaps one of Florida's intrepid political reporters will ask the question.
Palm Beach County Dems?
"Democrats outnumber Republicans in Palm Beach County Commission Chairman Tony Masilotti's suddenly up-for-grabs western District 6. But the county GOP has a deeper farm system of upwardly mobile municipal politicians positioned to run for the job." "Commentary: Margolis' vow helps open door to Republicans for Masilotti seat".