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."

E-Mail Florida Politics

This is our Main Page
Our Sister Site
On FaceBook
Follow us on Twitter
Our Google+ Page
Contact [E-Mail Florida Politics]
Site Feed
...and other resources


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.


Older posts [back to 2002]

Previous Articles by Derek Newton: Ten Things Fox on Line 1 Stem Cells are Intelligent Design Katrina Spin No Can't Win Perhaps the Most Important Race Senate Outlook The Nelson Thing Deep, Dark Secret Smart Boy Bringing Guns to a Knife Fight Playing to our Strength  

The Blog for Friday, July 18, 2008

Charlie strides world stage ... Florida in crisis

    "Crist capped a four-day trade mission to Britain Wednesday with speculation about his vice presidential chances, hopes that cheap Florida real estate would entice foreign buyers and a private meeting with Prince Charles." "Crist fields VP queries on Europe trade trip".

    "As a beaming Gov. Charlie Crist and his fiancee Carole Rome posed for pictures in London Wednesday with the Prince of Wales, state economists were wailing about the latest signs of Florida's deteriorating condition."

    "Governor Crist discusses climate change with His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales," headlined the news release from the governor's office. It was one of three distributed Wednesday with Internet links to pictures of Crist enjoying a midsummer visit to four European nations.

    In Tallahassee, economists predicted Florida's economy will keep tanking until at least the first half of 2010 (when Crist runs for re-election).
    It is refreshing to see the media that propped up this empty suit at every turn now ask: "what's the 'people's governor' thinking? Is it politically astute to stay in $1,800-a-night hotel suites when your constituents can barely afford gasoline at $4 a gallon to reach a Red Roof Inn? It's why Crist is starting to wear very thin in places."
    Taking stock of it all, one wonders if we've reached a pivot point in Crist's term, a moment when voters will look back six or eight months from now and realize that what looked like optimism was in fact cluelessness.

    This is the week that Time magazine chronicled the litany of all that's gone wrong in the Sunshine State.
    "Crist: Out of town, out of touch". See also "State's financial forecast: bad and worse".

    The Time piece mentioned above asks: "Is Florida the Sunset State?", and begins with this:
    Water Crisis Mortgage Fraud Political Dysfunction Algae Polluted Beaches Declining Crops Failing Public Schools Foreclosures
    read the lengthy piece here.

    Jebbite retribution

    The Jebbites may have to bide their time, but they always get their payback: "The state official whose critical report halted expansion of Florida's Medicaid changes has been fired by her boss, a former legislator who helped write the law implementing the changes."

    Linda Keen had served as inspector general of the Agency for Health Care Administration. Her report in September cited major problems with a pilot program championed by former Gov. Jeb Bush to privatize Medicaid services. She cited a rushed implementation and a lack of data to determine whether the program saved any money.

    Keen was dismissed earlier this month by AHCA Secretary Holly Benson, a former Pensacola lawmaker whom Gov. Charlie Crist appointed in February. Benson said Keen's findings played no role in her dismissal.
    "Author of report critical of Florida's Medicaid changes fired".

    Allen gets a pass

    "A judicial panel has recommended that First District Court of Appeal Judge Michael Allen be reprimanded for a written opinion that suggested a colleague improperly voted to acquit former Senate President W.D. Childers of Pensacola of bribery charges."

    The review panel found that Allen's written opinion was "reckless" and "had no objectively reasonable factual basis."

    However, the panel cleared Allen of charges that he deliberately misled investigators and recommended a relatively light punishment.
    Let's see if the Supreme Court takes a closer look, since the "Supreme Court doesn't have to follow the recommendation."

    "Panel recommends reprimand for Judge Allen".

    "Pollution-fueled algae blooms"

    "Five environmentalist organizations sued the federal government Thursday, demanding new measurable standards for pollution-fueled algae blooms in Florida waterways." "Environmental groups file suit against EPA".

    "Use It or Lose It"

    "The U.S. House of Representatives killed a bill Thursday that Democrats, including Kathy Castor, had pushed as a way to spur drilling on 68 million acres of government land already leased by oil and gas companies in Alaska, the West and the western Gulf of Mexico."

    The measure was a response to Republican calls to lift a long-standing drilling ban on most offshore U.S. waters, including off Florida's coasts.

    Opposition to that idea has put Democrats who control the House on the defensive as gas prices remain above $4 a gallon.

    To counter that, the bill sponsored Thursday by West Virginia Democratic Rep. Nick Rahall contained what Democrats called "Use It or Lose It" legislation, requiring oil producers to drill on the leases they have or relinquish them.

    Tampa Rep. Kathy Castor was one of 18 Democrats to co-sponsor the measure and the only Floridian to do so.
    "Tribune: Democrat-Backed Drilling Bill Falls Short In House".

    Fat kids

    The Daytona Beach News-Journal editorial board:

    A year ago Gov. Charlie Crist signed into law a requirement that children in elementary school get at least 30 minutes a day of physical education, five days a week. He and the Legislature were responding to an alarming trend. Children are getting fatter, fast. The percentage of boys and girls between the ages of 6 and 19 who are overweight has tripled since 1980, according to the 2006 "Shape of the Nation" report by the National Association for Sport and Physical Education.

    The trend isn't improving.
    "Bring back phys-ed".


    "With help from shills in the audience who asked questions about controversial aspects of individual candidates' backgrounds, some of the candidates attacked each other. The mudslinging shows that the Democrats -- none of whom are well known countywide nor have served elected office in Broward -- are eager to differentiate themselves in a crowded field." "Mud flies as Dem hopefuls for Broward sheriff debate".


    The Palm Beach Post editorial Board: "The euphoria over Florida's proposed $1.75 billion deal to buy U.S. Sugar Corp. land for Everglades restoration is evaporating as hard realities become apparent." "Consider tax increase with U.S. Sugar deal".

    "Florida could save about $1 billion within five years"

    "For every dollar invested to keep people fit and healthy in Florida, nearly $7 could be saved within a decade."

    A new report Thursday estimates that Florida could save about $1 billion within five years even after investing $173 million annually into programs to prevent disease.
    "Sentinel: Florida could spend a buck on prevention to save $7 in health costs".

    The root of all evil

    The St. Petersburg Times editorial board wants you to know that it is always about spineless politicians seeking "to mollify the police union." "Tampa police gas bills out of line".

    In the fight

    "Obama not giving up on Florida".


    "It's likely that State Farm won't be the last property insurer to ask Florida for a new rate hike, an industry spokesman said Thursday." "More insurance rate hike requests predicted".

    "Obama a feminist"

    "Barack Obama's half-sister is campaigning for the Democratic presidential hopeful for the first time in Florida, hoping to persuade Hillary Clinton supporters to switch their allegiance." "Obama a feminist, his half-sister tells women".

    "They've got things backward"

    The Orlando Sentinel editorial board: "They've got things backward at the St. Johns River Water Management District. Managers there are charged by law to determine the minimum water levels in rivers and lakes, below which the fragile ecosystems around them would suffer. Those levels are supposed to then guide the managers in determining whether it's safe for them to hand out permits to governments and others wanting to draw down the waterways." "Before allowing withdrawals, water managers must ensure they're safe".

    Varn out

    "Without comment, an appeals court today upheld the removal of former School Board member Fred Varn from the ballot for a seat in the Florida House."

    "Appeals court upholds exclusion of Varn from ballot".

    Florida gold

    "In the presidential race for campaign cash, Florida was especially generous to John McCain last month and gave even more to Barack Obama." "Florida a multimillion-dollar gold mine for presidential hopefuls".

<< Home