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 Saturday, July 18, 2009

"What's going on with the long-mighty Florida GOP?"

    Adam C. Smith writes about "A few recent Florida political developments:
    • 1,740 people contributed to the Florida Democratic Party in the three months that ended June 30, compared to 224 to the Florida GOP. It's the first time since 1996 that Democrats outraised Republicans in that fundraising period.

    • The latest voter registration statistics show that Democrats accounted for 39 percent of the new voter registrations in Florida since the last election, while Republicans accounted for 25 percent.

    • Mini rebellions against the state Republican leadership are popping up in local parties across the state. For months, vocal party activists have bashed state Republican Party chairman Jim Greer over spending, over his effort to muscle Marco Rubio out of the Republican Senate primary, and for allegedly "purging" conservative activists and Ron Paul acolytes from local parties. A "Recall Jim Greer" group recently formed on Facebook.

    What's going on with the long-mighty Florida GOP?
    "Florida Republican Party looking more like old, dysfunctional Democrats"

    RPOFer "Quitter"

    If anything, this is too polite:

    More: "Crist, Palin are “quitters” according to new Democratic web ad".

    Bushco's Florida legacy

    "Florida jobless rate jumps again" "". See also "Big Bend unemployment rises", "Marion unemployment rises to 12.6 percent" and "Jobless rate surges in Miami-Dade".

    More: "State economists predict six months more of recession", "State economists say turnaround will take longer" and "State economists consider possibility of 12 percent unemployment next year".

    Time to say "no"

    The Saint Petersburg Times editorial board: "It is bad enough that Gov. Charlie Crist and the Legislature let developers off the hook in the future for paying for road improvements to handle the traffic their projects generate. Now the developers want to wiggle out of agreements they've made to pay for road projects. It's up to local governments to say no." "Make developers pay". Related: Tim Nickens: "The strangulation of Florida".

    Raw political courage

    "Sen. Martinez to support Sotomayor for Supreme Court".


    The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "Federal money is beginning to flow and projects stalled for years are moving. Only now a bureaucratic snafu threatens to stop the work before it begins." "Work out Everglades glitch".

    Ahem ..., he's presumed innocent

    "The images still haunt James Richardson. It's been more than 40 years since his seven children died from insecticide poisoning and he's spent more than 20 of them in prison, charged in their deaths."

    He still tears up anytime the children are mentioned. So much time has passed. Witnesses have recanted their story against him and a baby sitter confessed to nurses before her death. Two subsequent investigations still couldn't say whether Richardson is guilty. A 1989 investigation commissioned by then-Miami state attorney Janet Reno said Richardson was "probably wrongfully accused" and ruled not to retry the case.
    Check out this passage, which may be one of the dumbest things ever penned by an alleged "journalist" (and that's saying a lot):
    Yet the 73-year-old Richardson has never been found innocent either.
    "Wrongly jailed Fla. inmate seeks compensation". Ahem, last time I looked, no one in this country has to be "found innocent". You see, in the United States of America, you're kinda, sorta presumed innocent, unless proven otherwise.

    Back in bidness

    "Fla. defense contractor reopens after federal raid".

    A little context, please

    Douglas C. Lyons: "Somewhere deep, deep, deep in the bowels of the nation's capital, [frothing at the mouth wingnut] Grover Norquist is doing a slow burn. Florida recently hiked its tobacco taxes, a feat some political observers are calling the biggest tax increase enacted in the state in quite some time."

    It wasn't supposed to happen. Norquist, the founder of the influential [radical right wing] Americans for Tax Reform, thought he had a deal — if not a promise. On Feb. 16, 2009, 32 of Florida's [Republican] elected officials joined other state leaders from across the country to throw their lot in with Norquist by pledging to oppose and vote against "... any and all efforts to increase taxes."

    Gov. [Republican] Charlie Crist heads the list. Attorney General [Republican] Bill McCollum signed the pledge, too, as did House Speaker [Republican] Larry Cretul and Senate President [Republican] Jeff Atwater.

    The others who have pledged allegiance to oppose taxes include state Rep. Dean Cannon, R-Winter Park, the next likely House Speaker, and state Sen. Mike Haridopolos, R-Melbourne, the next in line to lead the Florida Senate. I can't forget the 14 [Republican] lawmakers who chair major legislative committees that influence everything from child welfare services to highway construction.
    "Pols take the pledge to serve two masters".

    For some reason, Sun Sentinel Senior editorial writer Lyons couldn't bring himself to mention that each and every one of these geniuses is a Republican.


    The Miami Herald editors: "This new project isn't off the drawing board yet, but already it's estimated to cost $11 billion overall -- almost double what the fast train in 1999 was projected to cost. There are promises that private partners will be found to cover the costs of operation and maintenance. All of this may work this time around -- but taxpayers should not be stuck with a project if ridership estimates are irrationally overzealous (as they were in 1999) -- or if the deal hits taxpayers for operations and maintenance. The decade-old rail deal began as a partnership that morphed into a taxpayer burden." "Bullet train risk".

    The best we can do?

    "FAU President Brogan, previously the state's lieutenant governor, will be the Florida university system's new chancellor." "FAU president named Florida university system's new chancellor". See also yesterday's "The fix appears to be in" (scroll down).


    William March:

    Crist said earlier this week that he might take a position by the time the confirmation hearings ended Thursday. Then on Thursday, he said he wasn’t ready to say whether he would or wouldn’t vote to confirm her, and said he felt no pressure to do so. Some members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, he noted, are still undecided even after spending weeks studying the question and sitting through the hearings.

    That wasn’t good enough for Crist’s opponent in the GOP Senate primary, Marco Rubio, who announced Thursday on MOP that he opposes Sotomayor.

    “If you want to serve as U.S. senator, people deserve to know where you stand on the issues,” Rubio said in a news story his campaign distributed, which reported that Rubio had taken a stand and Crist hadn’t.

    Democrats jumped in, too.

    “Why won’t Crist say where he stands on Sotomayor?” asked state party spokesman Eric Jotkoff. “One only has to look at his schedule to see that Crist is focused on everything but governing Florida.”
    "Crist takes heat for no stance".

    Getting them brown people fighting each other

    "Are immigrants to blame for black unemployment?"

    "Targeting Florida"

    "The volunteers, now known as Organizing for America, are once again targeting Florida as a battleground. The group has held several meetings hoping to persuade neighbors to call their congressmen and urge their support for healthcare changes." "Obama group targets Fla. to push health care reform".

    Dead firefighter
    "Firefighter case could cost Orlando $1 million or more".

    "Howdy Doody" rakes it in

    "The Republican Party of Florida so far this year has spent over $146,000 on staffing, phones, fundraising mailers, office supplies and other campaign expenses on behalf of U.S. Rep. Adam Putnam's campaign for state agriculture commissioner. The only problem: He has a primary challenger who hasn't gotten nearly as much party help." "Florida GOP comes to Putnam's aid in primary with Baker".


    Daytona Beach News Journal editorial board: "Many Floridians -- many Volusia County voters -- who approved a constitutional amendment to reduce government revenue and supported lawmakers who rained tax cuts on constituents are likely among those now complaining about the $75 fee they'll have to pay for their child to play sports. But the fee is a direct consequence of some of the same voters' decisions." "Pay to play".

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