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
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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 Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Serial bar flunker Crist says Sotomayor unfit for SCOTUS

    "After avoiding the question for weeks," Chain Gang Charlie Crist, who flunked the florida bar exam twice after graduating from Cumberland School of Law in Birmingham, Alabama, "said he opposes the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor."
    Crist, whose embrace of President Barack Obama's stimulus plan cost him support among some conservative Republicans, echoed their objections to Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor in a statement Tuesday.

    Crist had brushed off questions about Sotomayor's nomination for weeks, drawing criticism from his opponents in the U.S. Senate race. Sen. Mel Martinez, the Republican whose retirement in 2010 opened the door for Crist, said last week that he supports Sotomayor.

    Without warning, Crist took a stand on her nomination on a day when he had no public appearances scheduled. ``I have strong concerns that Judge Sotomayor would not strictly and objectively construe the Constitution and lacks respect for the fundamental right to keep and bear arms,'' Crist said.
    "Crist says he opposes Sotomayor". See also "Florida governor opposes Sotomayor nomination" and "Florida governor opposes Sotomayor nomination".

    The best they can do?

    "After the Barack Obama-John McCain presidential campaign, in which Obama excited droves of younger voters, Republican Party leaders figure they need to do offer something to attract 18- to 35-year-olds. So who is the Florida Republican Party turning to? Carrie Prejean, the California model and fired Miss California USA who generated a massive amount of publicity with her opposition to same-sex marriage during the 2009 Miss USA pageant."

    Using Prejean at a big August gathering of under 35-year-old voters to discuss the future of the party isn’t a bad idea, said Anna Alexopoulos, 24, president of the Broward Young Republicans and secretary of the Florida Federation of Young Republicans.

    Alexopoulos said some Young Republican members, especially in liberal Broward County, don’t agree with Prejean on gay marriage, she said she and many others admire her for standing up for what she believes despite withering criticism.

    And, Alexopoulos acknowledged, celebrity sells in today’s culture – maybe more than the speech-giving politicians typical of political conferences. And, given the somewhat limited supply of conservative young celebrities, Prejean isn’t a bad choice.
    "State GOP using former Miss California Carrie Prejean to attract new voters".

    "'Join the winning team!'"

    "The biggest check a donor can legally write to Gov. Charlie Crist's campaign for the U.S. Senate is for $2,400."

    But Jacksonville-area lobbyist Marty Fiorentino, who represents AT&T, Fidelity National Financial and CSX Transportation, has delivered $139,250 to Crist. Tallahassee lobbyist James Eaton, whose healthcare industry clients face a major overhaul out of Washington, collected $50,700 for the Republican governor.

    These lobbyists and other big campaign donors get around the $2,400 limit by hitting up their clients, friends and relatives for checks -- a practice known as ``bundling.'' It has become as traditional as bumper stickers. What's new is a federal law that requires candidates to identify federal lobbyists who bundle at least $16,000 -- providing a window into Crist's record-setting campaign account.

    Crist -- whose $4.3 million in donations from April to June led Senate candidates nationwide -- was in Washington Tuesday at a fundraiser hosted by federal lobbyists for the second day in a row.

    "Join the winning team!'' reads the invitation to Tuesday's reception at the private Capitol Hill Club, which was co-hosted by lobbyists T.J. Petrizzo, Omar Franco and Pat Raffaniello....

    Little is known about his contributors so far, since he retreated last week on a offer to provide a database of his donors to the press.
    "Lobbyists generous to Crist campaign".

    Consultants raking it in

    "They are consultants, the behind-the-scenes players who mold a candidate's message, dig up dirt on opponents and perfect a politician's pitch." "Spending on political consultants in Florida skyrockets".

    Grayson smiling this morning

    "For months, Orange County Mayor Rich Crotty has considered running against rookie U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, but he has gotten little recent encouragement from national Republicans."

    A newly released poll could explain why.

    About 300 voters questioned in a mid-March survey commissioned by the National Republican Congressional Committee were as likely to disapprove of Crotty's performance as approve of it. The poll was provided to the Orlando Sentinel by a state GOP party operative on the condition of anonymity....

    It's not clear what effect the poll results have had on Crotty, who's term-limited as mayor next year and had promised a decision by July 4 on whether to run against Grayson, D-Orlando. But neither he nor another potential candidate, former state Sen. Dan Webster, R- Winter Garden, have said what they intend to do.
    "Voters evenly split on Crotty, GOP poll finds".


    "FDLE: Gulfstream casino owes taxes after fraudulent play discovered".

    Sans mustache

    "Florida witnesses the reemergence of a political figure as Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, a former lawmaker from North Fort Myers, officially begins his campaign for attorney general." "Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp officially begins run for attorney general".

    Luv 4 sale

    "Rep. Rick Kriseman wants Plant City Republican Rich Glorioso removed from the panel that will look at Ray Sansom and his dealings with a Panhandle college."

    "I know him to be a decent man and a quality lawmaker who has served both our state and our country with honor," Kriseman, D-St. Petersburg, writes in a letter to House Speaker Larry Cretul. "My concern is the perception following reports that he received campaign contributions from Mr. Jay Odom via Rep. Ray Sansom.
    "Rep. Kriseman wants Glorioso off Sansom panel".

    Meantime, "Meggs details Sansom-Richburg-Odom charges".

    While Charlie sleeps

    "Florida economists said the state's economic recovery could start later and move more slowly than had been predicted previously." "Later Florida recovery seen".

    "That's right, you"

    Scott Maxwell:

    "Development interests are gearing up for a fight, stocking their war chests with millions of dollars to do battle against the people they fear most in the world:" You.

    That's right, you.

    Sure, you might not feel so powerful right now. (Or look it, sitting there in that coffee-stained pajama top.) But you are the very thing that developers fear most.

    Why? Because, unlike many of our campaign-cash-craving politicians, you aren't afraid to tell developers "no."

    Not if a proposed development would overcrowd your child's school. Or further clog your road. Or increase your taxes to provide services to a big development in some far-flung locale.

    You're capable of making that decision. And that is the philosophy at the root of Hometown Democracy — that the people can be trusted.

    Florida voters will get the chance to approve Hometown Democracy in the form of a constitutional amendment next year. But this bare-knuckles campaign has already begun.

    So today we are going to look at who's funding the campaigns — and one of the most bogus arguments you will hear against it.
    "Want sensible growth? Take matters into your own hands".

    Sorry, Georgia

    The Tampa Tribune editorial board: "A federal judge has correctly called the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on the carpet for illegally placing Florida's coastal ecosystem and marine economy in harm's way to quench the thirst of Georgia communities that failed to plan for their future." "Water ruling protects Florida". See also The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "Flow, judge, go with Florida".

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