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 Saturday, May 23, 2009

McCollum versus Sink "begins right now"

    Steve Bousquet: "Sink put out six media advisories this week; McCollum seven."
    Are these two Cabinet officers using their taxpayer-funded government offices to promote themselves for higher office? (Perish the thought!)

    The answer is, of course they are, though the candidates may insist otherwise.

    From now through the 2010 election, every move McCollum and Sink make will be viewed through the prism of the election.
    "Neither McCollum nor Sink has a primary opponent, so their face-to-face contest begins right now."
    A new Mason-Dixon poll this week has McCollum leading by 40 percent to 34 percent. But among women, Sink, a woman, had only a one-point advantage, 38 percent to 37 percent, which suggests that lots of voters don't even know her gender. (The poll was of 625 registered voters with a margin of error of 4 percentage points.)
    "All politics, all the time".

    Ambler opens mouth, insert foot

    "State Rep. Kevin Ambler, R-Tampa, a friend of indicted former state House Speaker Ray Sansom, charged Friday that Leon County State Attorney Willie Meggs is prosecuting Sansom for political reasons."

    While speaking at the Tampa Tiger Bay Club, Ambler said Sansom did nothing wrong and is "one of the most honorable representatives I've ever served with."

    He said Meggs "is a Democrat who has his own agenda and political aspirations."

    Ambler also confirmed he's considering running for state attorney general.

    Meggs laughed off the accusation. "Does he know how old I am?" said Meggs, who's about to turn 66. "If there's an office he thinks I've got a shot at and it pays more, I hope he'll tell me about it."
    "Rep. Ambler: Politics at play in case".

    No Klein

    "U.S. Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton, will seek a third term in Congress next year rather than pursue a U.S. Senate bid, he announced today." "Rep. Ron Klein rules out Senate bid".

    PBP dance to League of Cities tune

    Them libruls on the The Palm Beach Post editorial board can't abide unions: the job scared ink stained wretches argue that "Crist should veto the Firefighter Layoff Prevention Bill."

    Of course, it isn't called that. It's called Senate Bill 1000. But it's an attempt by the state's politically powerful firefighters to get around any job and benefit losses that other public employees might face because of the budget crunch.

    SB 1000 would let counties, if voters approve, add a penny to the sales tax to pay for fire operations. In Palm Beach County, a 1-cent increase could raise about $200 million a year, close to what is raised from a separate line item on county property tax bills that pays for fire services. Most cities charge indirectly for fire services and don't have the separate item.

    The union worries that because of limitations on property-tax collections and falling home prices, counties will have to lay off firefighters or rework generous contracts.
    "EDITORIAL: No firefighter blank check".

    We've previously bleated about the comical inability of Florida's newspaper editors inability to recognize that Florida's public employees have a fundamental constitutional right to unionize and bargain collectively.

    "National GOP's decision to back Crist could cause blow-back"

    The Tallahassee Democrat editorial board: "For a generation, one of the defining tenets of the Republican Party has been that Washington should interfere as little as possible in local affairs. ... Except, that is, when it comes to choosing Republican candidates."

    Take Gov. Charlie Crist's announcement last week that he was seeking the Senate seat being vacated by fellow Republican Mel Martinez. Within hours, the Republican establishment in Washington — desperate to save its dwindling number of Senate seats — threw its support behind him.

    That puts Crist in position to reap tons of campaign cash, tap into the party's other resources and improve his chances for victory.

    The only problem is that former GOP Speaker of the Florida House Marco Rubio is also running. While Rubio has given no indication of pulling out, it's doubtful other Republicans will jump in. ...

    Ironically, the national GOP's decision to back Crist could cause blow-back.

    Many Republicans dislike Crist's moderate policies and may flock to Rubio, who is billing himself as the true conservative.

    That could make for the tough primary that Republican leaders in Washington want to avoid ....
    "Editorial: Candidate lockout".

    Earth to Charlie

    "Palladino was handed her pink slip on the same day that Gov. Charlie Crist was on a four-city tour touting economic development legislation he says will rev the economy and create thousands of jobs." "Democrat: Pink slips going out to an estimated 600 to 800 state workers". Related: "UF budget holds millions in cuts, layoffs".

    "A glimmer of hope"

    "It may be only a glimmer of hope, but Florida received at least a little bit of good economic news for a change Friday when state officials announced the state's unemployment rate dropped slightly in April." "Fla. jobless rate eases in April to 9.6 percent".

    Laff riot

    "Sharon Day, Florida's national Republican committeewoman, has sent a letter to state committee members firing back at RPOF chair Jim Greer for his recent letter regarding his attempts to avoid a primary in the U.S. Senate and Florida governor races. Among her word choices to describe Greer's assertions:"

    "ludicrous," "patently false," and "unfortunate".
    Read for yourself: "Top Repub Sharon Day fires back at Greer".

    "Engaging Cuba"

    "Further signaling its interest in engaging Cuba, the Obama administration is asking the Castro government to resume migration talks that President George W. Bush suspended in 2004."

    The move comes a month after President Barack Obama lifted travel and gift restrictions for those with relatives on the island and eased restrictions on U.S. telecommunications firms to do business in Cuba. And it comes as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton heads to Honduras for a gathering of the Organization of American States, where the reintegration of Cuba into the hemispheric body promises to be a hot topic.

    The State Department on Friday afternoon delivered a diplomatic note to the Cuban Interests Section in Washington, D.C., asking to resume the biannual migration talks, which were alternately held in the United States and Cuba.
    Florida's one trick ponies ain't impressed:
    [T]he overture was met with swift opposition from Florida's Cuban-American Republican members of Congress who say Havana should first show that it's willing to make a move. ...

    ''The administration should insist on the regime's full compliance with the migration accords before reopening formal talks,'' Sen. Mel Martinez said. 'Otherwise, this will be little more than a concession to the regime and a departure from the president's commitment to make freedom the `lodestone' of our policy toward Cuba.''

    And in a joint statement, Reps. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Mario Diaz-Balart called the move a ''unilateral concession'' to the Cuban government.
    "Obama aims to renew migration talks with Cuba".

    "Dead-end scheme"

    The Tampa Tribune editorial board: "Taxpayers should be glad the state Department of Transportation didn't receive any bids from private interests to lease, operate and collect tolls on Alligator Alley."

    Now it's time for state officials to drop this dead-end scheme.

    Alligator Alley is a 78-mile stretch of Interstate 75 in South Florida that connects the state's two coasts. It is a limited-access toll facility - a public one - which state officials sought to lease to a private firm in exchange for upfront money that could be used for road improvements.

    It is typical of a state always looking for stopgap financing schemes that will allow it to avoid confronting its shaky revenue structure.
    "Keep Alligator Alley in taxpayers' control".


    "President Barack Obama will name former astronaut Charles Bolden as NASA administrator as early as Saturday, according to three congressional sources. If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, the retired Marine Corps general will be the first African-American to head the agency." "Obama picks ex-astronaut Charles Bolden to be new NASA administrator".

    State employee health insurance

    "The state worker's union opposes Gaetz's bill because, based on data from an actuarial firm and Blue Cross, it could cost the state health insurance program up to $18.5 million in 2010-11. Out-of-pocket costs for employees could rise 75 percent. The Department of Management Services predicted in February that the state insurance group is already facing a $450 million deficit by 2011-12." "Gaetz says health bill is good for workers".

<< Home