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 Saturday, March 14, 2009

"Florida's recession-stricken budget"

    "Florida's recession-stricken budget outlook got worse Friday as economists forecast a revenue shortage of more than $1 billion this year — and more than double that in the next fiscal year. "
    The panel of economic and policy analysts from the executive and legislative branches spent more than five hours examining every source of state revenues, from sales taxes and building permits to driver license fees and various fines or penalties. There were hardly any bright spots.

    They wound up shaving $1.1 billion off of this year's already-reduced revenue estimate and lowered expectations by $2.3 billion for the fiscal year starting July 1.
    "State revenue woes worse than expected". See also "Economists Forecast Further Drop In State Revenue", "Recession costs Florida another $1.1 billion, leaders say" and "Friday the 13th brings some slashing: $1 billion budget hole this year".

    "It's become an all-too-familiar scene in the Capitol."
    As Florida's economy continues to sink, analysts crunch financial data and make increasingly dreary projections about how much money the state will have on hand to pay for schools, health care and other needs.

    That scene repeated itself Friday as economists said the state will bring in $3.44 billion less in taxes over two years than they had projected in November.
    "New tax-revenue predictions dire". See also "Early numbers overwhelm Crist's budget projections".

    International Idiot

    Shiny new Florida Congressman Bill Posey, R-Wingnut, "wouldn't say if he thinks Obama is a citizen". "Posey doubting Obama's citizenship?".

    "The cheapest state in the nation — and it shows"

    The Tallahassee Democrat editorial board recognizes that the Florida House is ideologically brain dead:

    It may be that in the Florida Senate there is some wisdom to be found about increasing state revenues to end the bragging rights that Florida is the cheapest state in the nation — and it shows.

    Senators, who have served longer and seen more and have less ideological stubbornness, seem to have a deeper appreciation for reality.
    "Stop Digging". See also "State lawmakers weigh tax hikes as revenues continue to drop" and "".

    No twofers

    "Speaker's action stirs up Dade".

    How 'bout lobbyist and mayor?

    "A judge has ruled that Teresa Zemaitis, who won Kenneth City's mayoral election with 70.5 percent of the vote, can be either a public school teacher or mayor of the town. But she can't be both ...". "Judge: Woman can't teach, be mayor".

    The Legislature digs up a lawyer from SoCal ...

    ... to tell them what they want to hear: "A top gambling lawyer from California has advised Florida legislators that Seminole gambling is not only illegal, but the state has ample ammunition including laws aimed at organized crime rings to shut down the tribe's operations." "Attorney: Legislature can act against Indian casinos". See also "Legislators at odds over Seminole blackjack games".


    "Carol Carter, who resigned from her post as state committeewoman for the Hillsborough County Republican Party over an e-mail some considered racially offensive, is dropping out of the race to regain the position."

    "Some"? Here's what she communicated:

    "How can 2,000,000 blacks get into Washington, DC in 1 day in sub zero temps [for Obama's inauguration] when 200,000 couldn't get out of New Orleans in 85 degree temps with four days notice?"
    "Ex-GOP Committeewoman Ends Bid To Regain The Seat"

    Why is it so hard for our alleged journalists to concede that this statement is ipso facto "racially offensive", as opposed to writing that "some" might consider it "racially offensive"?

    Moreover, is it not clear that the assertion is not merely "racially offensive" (a watered down phrase if there ever was one), but rather is "racist".

    See generally "After All, He Is Black"

    Speaking of Black People

    "Greer's message is the latest salvo in the ideological battle within the party – in effect, whether it's the party of conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh or moderates such as Greer and Gov. Charlie Crist." "Florida GOP Chairman: Stop Slamming Steele".

    "Tons of debris fouling Earth's life-support system"

    The Daytona Beach News Journal
    editorial board: ""

    The valiant rescue of a right whale entangled in hundreds of feet of rope off the Volusia County coast last week brings into sharp focus the hazard human trash poses to marine life. Five right whales that we're aware of have been similarly entangled in their annual southern migration to Georgia and Florida waters this year. Ocean debris is a pervasive hazard but it is readily preventable, as pointed out in the annual report released Tuesday by the Ocean Conservancy -- a global index of trash collected in the world's oceans and marine waterways.
    "Adrift in the ocean".

    Is Charlie high?

    Steve Bousquet thinks "[m]ost people require the assistance of controlled substances to achieve the level of euphoria expressed by Gov. Charlie Crist."

    Tax revenues in Florida will drop by $3.5 billion more, this year and next.

    The public employee pension fund has lost billions and may require a bailout.

    The unemployment compensation fund has shrunk by half in five months.

    I could go on, but you get the point. It was just another week in paradise.

    All of this news would sound pretty depressing if Charlie Crist were not governor. Spend a few minutes in Sunshine Charlie's midst, and all of the state's problems seem to magically melt away.
    "For Gov. Crist, darkest days are always sunny in Florida".

    Florida's delightful economy

    The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "Victor Vasquez left Atlanta a couple of months ago because he no longer could find work in construction. He moved his family to Palm Beach County, hoping that he would fare better. He hasn't."

    Mr. Vasquez was among nearly two dozen mostly Guatemalan immigrants outside the Home Depot on Lake Worth Road on a recent afternoon, hoping to snag a job from a contractor or homeowner. At sunup, as many as 200 - a number that has swelled with the recession - gather at entrances to the parking lot and swarm the arriving cars.

    As The Post reported Monday, Home Depot blames them for causing accidents and driving away customers. The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office has done undercover stings, but law enforcement alone is not the long-term solution to a problem that is less about loitering than about illegal immigration. Yet immigration reform is not likely to be a priority for President Obama or Congress until 2011. Economic relief and health care are the priorities this year, and 2010 is an election year. In the meantime, Palm Beach County must do what cities have done and offer a short-term solution while waiting for Washington.

    "The existence of day laborers is beyond our control," said Home Depot spokesman Craig Fishel. "It is a complex community matter that requires the leadership of federal and local government in cooperation with civic groups, law enforcement and businesses."
    "Don't loiter on the laborers".

    "Shortcut" abuse

    The St. Petersburg Times editorial board: "The consent agenda that government boards once used to quickly dispatch inconsequential items is now so abused by some local governments that it is time to place limits on its use. " "Cities abuse vote shortcut".

    Truer words were never spoken

    Surely the Florida Chamber didn't get all honest on us? This from the Orlando Sentinel this morning:

    "We're confident that employers nationally and across the state are trying to do what's best for employers," said Kirsten Borman of the Florida Chamber of Commerce. "We hope the government doesn't get into mandating the employer-employee relationship."
    "No notice given before layoffs? It could be illegal".

    Might this be another Sentinel gaffe? What is it with the Orlando Sentinel, anyway? On January 1, 2008, the Sentinel actually identified Jebbie as a staff writer in a story:
    The Orlando Sentinel has an article this morning attributed to "Jeb!", with the following byline:
    "Gov. Jeb Bush | Sentinel Staff Writer"
    "Jebbie takes a job as a staff writer with the Orlando Sentinel".

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