"New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson touted Palm Beach County on Saturday as an important gateway for Democrats looking to win Florida in November."
"Where Florida goes, goes America and where Palm Beach County goes, so goes Florida," the onetime presidential candidate said at the county's Democratic Party dinner at the Palm Beach County Convention Center."Bill Richardson says Palm Beach County key for Obama".
Richardson, considered on the short list to be Sen. Barack Obama's Democratic presidential running mate, said the party needs to focus on the state, especially Cuban Americans.
"We've got a lot of work to do here," said Richardson, the featured speaker at the event.
Not exactly free speech
"Two dozen cars were vandalized in a downtown parking lot Saturday, causing more than $10,000 in damage, with some of it appearing to be politically motivated." "Vandals in Orlando tag 60 cars with anti-Obama messages".
"A one-time political apprentice of former Gov. Jeb Bush has earned her way to the top job in Sen. John McCain's Florida campaign, where she'll have to prove her stripes in a must-win state."
DiBenigno, 40, who lives in Tallahassee, is the consummate insider. She's been on the inside of two successful Jeb Bush campaigns for governor and one defeat. She helped orchestrate Crist's victory over Tom Gallagher in the 2006 governor's race. She was schooled in Miami-Dade politics, learned fundraising from the late Alec Courtelis -- who raised millions for Republicans -- worked on four presidential campaigns and served a stint in the White House. Her political Rolodex is among the most extensive in Florida."Cuban-American woman leads McCain's Florida campaign".
"Homeowners Defense Act"
The Palm Beach Post editorial Board: "In November, the Homeowners Defense Act passed the U.S. House 258-155. There is a Senate version of the bill, which would create a national disaster insurance program. The bill has faced resistance from, among others, Midwesterners. But that was before this summer. Along the Mississippi River, especially in such Midwestern states as Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Missouri, the flooding has been near-biblical. It has brought back memories of 1993, when months of flooding caused $15 billion in damage." "Why disaster insurance is the responsible policy".
"Save Our Homes created inequities"
The South Florida Sun-Sentinel editorial board: "Florida's tax system needs to gradually ease the inequity while preserving Save Our Homes' core objective. But changing or repealing this amendment is politically impossible because many voters fear losing Save Our Homes will mean spiraling, unaffordable tax increases." "Popular Save Our Homes amendment also created inequities".
A man among men
"McAndrew said he supported the death penalty during his 20-plus years with the Department of Corrections. 'One day I just sat down and said, 'This is wrong. This is wrong. We have no business killing people,'he said, except in self-defense, in defense of someone else or in defense of the nation."
"Warden on death penalty: 'This is wrong'".
"High-speed train flip-flop"
The South Florida Sun-Sentinel editorial board: "In 2004, more than 60 percent of voters repealed the amendment. Now, the high-speed train flip-flop is the poster child for what's wrong with the citizen initiative amendment process. Millions were spent to place it on the ballot. Millions were spent to remove it from the constitution." "High-speed train got off track".
More crazy government regulation of the private sector
"For dozens of Florida-based travel agencies that book flights to Cuba, the future of their livelihood is, well, up in the air. On Monday, a coalition of 16 Miami-based travel agencies specializing in trips to Cuba plan to file a lawsuit against the state, hoping that a judge will halt a recently approved law aimed at increasing state regulation of their trade." "Cuba travel law stirs debate".
Randy Schultz: "When U.S. Sugar said last week that the company had agreed to be bought out by the state, many in the company's hometown of Clewiston and all along the rim towns of Lake Okeechobee felt betrayed." "No way to sugarcoat Glades anger".
More: "Political pluck, power dovetailed in state-U.S. Sugar deal".osThe Orlando Sentinel editorial board: "With apologies to Thomas Jefferson, the government that governs best doesn't always govern least." "Crist needs strong follow-through on Everglades blockbuster"
She's a Dem? Who knew?
"One of the more popular parlor games for Tampa Bay political junkies is plotting the future of some of our more ambitious and high-profile mayors."
There's Republican St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker, surely rooting for Democrat Alex Sink to vacate her chief financial officer perch to run for governor or U.S. Senate. And Republican Clearwater Mayor Frank Hibbard, who is among those wondering if C.W. Bill Young will ever retire from Congress."Iorio steers clear of partisanship".
Then there's Democratic Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio, whose term ends in 2011 and whose profile as a brainy, thoroughly competent leader from Florida's most important battleground — and a woman to boot — gets her mentioned frequently as an attractive statewide candidate in the mold of Sink. The problem? Unlike Sink and most other potential statewide candidates, Iorio would have to explain in a primary why she almost never lifts a finger to help fellow Democrats.
When a dove cries
"Wildlife officials are trying to figure out what's causing dozens of doves to die in the Florida Keys." "Bird illness spreading in the Florida Keys".
"Don't count Gov. Charlie Crist among those Republicans predicting Florida is a lock for John McCain: 'I think it's going to be tight,' he told Buzz. "These are two strong candidates, and I don't know which way it goes." Obama campaign manager David Plouffe agreed. " "The fight for Florida".
"One might never realize"
The Orlando Sentinel editorial board: "Looking at the list of candidates for the 140 state legislative races on this year's ballot, one might never realize there are roughly the same number of registered Democrats and Republicans in Florida. In more than a quarter of those races -- 39 -- candidates are running without opposition. They won their seats just by meeting the filing deadline. That's bound to keep happening as long as legislators are free after every 10-year census to draw districts with a clear majority of voters inclined to support incumbents or their parties." "An effort to reduce predictability in political districts deserves support".
The Tampa Tribune editorial board: "The high price of fuel is a huge threat to Florida tourism and the state's overall economic growth." "Big Investment In Rail Will Help State's Economy Keep Rolling".
"An award-winning example of political folly"
The Tallahassee Democrat editorial board: "This November, Florida voters will see nine constitutional amendments on the ballot, and this newspaper and countless organizations and citizens will be examining the pros and cons of each in the coming months. But one amendment, No. 5, is so great a threat to the long-term fiscal stability of our counties, schools and state — such an award-winning example of political folly — that we urge voters to reject it soundly." "A big thumbs down: Amendment 5 makes bad situation worse".
The Miami Herald editorial board: "Anti-immigrant fever grips the nation".
"Florida's Ethics in Education Act"
"School districts around the state await instructions to implement Florida's Ethics in Education Act, which officially goes into effect Tuesday. Some fear it may force them to fire good employees, impose a burdensome bureaucracy and lead to lawsuits. " "Ethics in Education Act takes effect on Tuesday".