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, September 26, 2009

More Hasner wingnuttery

    Adam Hasner wants to be "Jeb!2" so badly, he's prepared to sacrifice (yet again) whatever semblance of credibility he ever had, and it never was much to begin with.

    "House Republican Leader Adam Hasner today attacked a program that restores voting rights to most ex-felons in Florida, but ignored the fact that Republican Gov. Charlie Crist proposed it."
    Hasner said the policy to automatically restore some civil rights to most felons should be suspended after learning mistakes were made, and pointed out embattled community organizing group ACORN supports the program. He also cast blame on Democrat Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink for voting for the policy when it was put in place in 2007.
    "What Hasner didn't mention the statement he issued is that it was Crist's idea to restore voting and other civil rights to nonviolent felons who had completed their sentences and paid restitution."
    The statement came a day after Sink raised concerns about an audit that showed 13 felons had their rights restored even though they shouldn't have. She said at a Clemency Board meeting Thursday that rights should be rescinded in at least three cases because they involved convictions for aggravated or sexual battery.

    The board, which is made up of Crist and the three Cabinet members, will review the cases in December. Crist, Sink and Republican Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bronson voted for the automatic restoration of voting rights for most felons. Republican Attorney General Bill McCollum voted against it. Sink and McCollum are candidates for governor in the 2010 election.

    The headline on Hasner's press release read "Felons owe thank you to Alex Sink, ACORN." Reached later Friday, Hasner said he was only trying to point out that Sink supported the rights restoration policy and is now seeking to rescind rights.

    "Anyone who voted in favor of that policy should be held accountable regardless of their political party, and Bill McCollum was wise in voting against it," Hasner said.
    "GOP leader slams Crist-backed felon vote restoration".

    Perhaps Adam can explain himself on the next Mark Foley radio show: "Redemption of Mark Foley: Ex-lawmaker makes a comeback" ("Foley's return is being aided by contacts with party conservatives, including fellow Palm Beach resident Rush Limbaugh.")

    Related: "The inappropriate restoration of civil rights for 13 felons, including two who are still incarcerated and another who raped a minor, turned into an early issue for the 2010 election that could drive a wedge between the top two Republican candidates in two state races. Gov. Charlie Crist and Attorney General Bill McCollum, Republicans running for U.S. Senate and governor respectively, were on opposite sides of one Crist's top priorities in 2007: increasing the number of ex-offenders who could have their rights automatically restored." "Mistaken restoration of rights to felons already bubbling as issue in Florida governor, U.S. Senate races".

    Self-styled "journalist" at work

    "A measure backed by one of Washington's oddest couples — libertarian Republican Ron Paul of Texas and self-styled progressive Democrat[*] Alan Grayson of Orlando — took another step toward becoming law Friday." "Alan Grayson, Ron Paul join for push to audit Fed".

    - - - - - - - - - -
    *Why is the "progressive Democrat" label prefaced with "self-styled" by the dear "reporter", one "Mark K. Matthews", self-styled, "Washington Bureau" reporter.

    "Things can't get much worse"

    Steve Bousquet: "Things can't get much worse for the trial bar and its statewide lobbying arm, the Florida Justice Association." "Things can't get much worse for trial lawyers in Florida".

    "After months of remaining tight-lipped ..."

    The Saint Petersburg Times editorial board: "After months of remaining tight-lipped about health care reform, Sen. Bill Nelson jumped into the debate with both feet this week. The Florida Democrat made national news with two proposed amendments to the legislation being debated by the Senate Finance Committee. One was well-intentioned; the other was more about good politics than good policy. " "Nelson's health care stumble"..

    The latest from Zell: Dubya victim of "scurrilous attacks"?

    The The Orlando Sentinel editorial board laments:

    Former President George W. Bush also knows a thing or two about scurrilous attacks from political enemies.
    Oh really?

    RPOFers desperate to attack Sink ...

    ... and some of Florida's newspaper companies eat it up.

    This apparently qualifies as news: "Alex Sink is Twitter pal with ACORN".

    That so-called "news" should be leavened with a bit 'o this, courtesy of the The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "Thank goodness that Congress cut off money to an organization that works for poor people. We can't have too much of that in Washington when the wealthy need so much help."

    In one way, we're thrilled that Republicans now are so worried about money going to a "corrupt" organization, as they call ACORN. Obviously, the GOP now will get tough on the private companies that get tens of billions each year in contracts, compared with the $53 million ACORN has received over the last decade.

    The real disappointment about what those ACORN employees did is that their actions will result in less advocacy for the poor, who have enough trouble getting attention from a Congress where the social schedule revolves around fund-raisers. The story now will be ACORN's response and the attempt by Republicans to tag anyone who has had contact with the group. The real story should be those overlooked Americans.
    "The ACORN back story".


    "The legal fight over Gov. Charlie Crist's half-billion-dollar Everglades restoration land deal now moves to Florida's highest court. Opponents trying to torpedo the deal for 73,000 acres of U.S. Sugar Corp. farmland this week filed their anticipated notices to appeal, which puts the case in the hands of the Florida Supreme Court."

    Crist proposes that South Florida taxpayers pay $536 million to buy land that could be used to build reservoirs and treatment areas to restore water flows from Lake Okeechobee to the Everglades.

    The Miccosukee Tribe and sugar producer Florida Crystals are fighting the deal, arguing it costs taxpayers too much with no guaranteed results and that it takes money away from other stalled Everglades restoration projects.

    The legal fight centers on the South Florida Water Management District's ability to borrow the money to pay for the land. The district leads Everglades restoration and South Florida property taxpayers would end up paying off the long-term debt.
    "Fight over deal to buy U.S. Sugar land goes to Florida Supreme Court".

    George Will writes that Rubio "probably will" win

    George Will: "Leading national Republicans rushed to endorse Crist. In tennis, such decisions are called unforced errors."

    Because so many companies do business with state governments, governors are fundraising dynamos, so a Crist nomination would not burden the national party, which helps explain why party leaders like him. But that is myopic reasoning.
    Will writes that, among other things,
    Crist expanded, and vetoed reform of, the state's reckless version of a property insurance "public option." It is government-run insurance that, by offering rates lower than rational assessments of risk would dictate, has driven private insurers to limit their business or even stop doing business in the state. When a huge hurricane hits, Florida -- and U.S. -- taxpayers might have to foot the bill, by which time Crist plans to be in Washington.
    Will continues:
    Crist, says Rubio, "never thought he'd have to run in a Republican primary again." Probably only about 20 percent of Florida's 4 million registered Republicans will vote in the closed primary in late August in a nonpresidential year. So, about 450,000 votes might win it. That many can come from Republicans who are attentive to politics even in late summer because they are ideologically driven.

    As is Rubio, which is why National Review, the bimonthly encyclical of the church of conservatism, had him on a recent cover and why the Club for Growth, a group that contributes to Republicans friendly to free markets, should support him. Crist has a large lead in name recognition, and hence in polls. But where Rubio and he are both known, they are neck and neck. ...

    In January 2011, one Floridian will leave for the U.S. Senate. He is unlikely to be a former governor at odds with his party's nominating electorate, or the probable Democratic nominee, Kendrick Meek, a hyper-liberal congressman. Rubio intends to prove that "in the most important swing state, you can run successfully as a principled conservative." He probably will.
    "A Ripe Time For Florida's Marco Rubio" (via The Buzz's "George Will likes Marco Rubio's odds against Charlie Crist".)

    $1.588 billion of construction work on the horizon

    "Florida Power & Light's proposal to build a $1.588 billion natural-gas pipeline through 14 counties will be discussed at a public meeting Monday in Volusia County." "FPL natural-gas pipeline would run through 14 Florida counties".

    I am shocked, shocked ...

    "State House Rules Committee Chairman Bill Galvano Thursday dismissed a complaint filed by Rep. J.C. Planas, R-Miami, earlier this month alleging that House Speaker Larry Cretul broke House rules by reshuffling committees without a vote of the full chamber." "Complaint against Florida House speaker dismissed".

    Another Chiles

    "Ledger: Bud Chiles May Seek CFO Post".

    "Dirt cheap prices"

    The Miami Herald editorial board: "Three Broward County public figures -- two office holders and one former elected official -- are charged with engaging in fraudulent acts, apparently with such minuscule rewards that it makes you wonder:"

    Is this just the tip of the iceberg for their alleged kickbacks and other illegal activity -- or did they think so little of their public jobs that they sold them out for dirt cheap prices? What are Broward voters to make of such casual disregard for the law, for the public trust, for the oath of office these three took?

    County Commissioner Josephus Eggelletion Jr. laundered money collected from a Ponzi scheme that netted him all of $15,000, according to acting U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Sloman.

    School Board member Beverly Gallagher allegedly agreed to secure a $71 million contract for a school construction project in exchange for a $12,500 payoff from the would-be bidder.

    Former Miramar city commissioner Fitzroy Salesman, according to a federal indictment, collected $5,840 for helping contractors bid for city projects.
    "Selling out".

    A related story from Douglas Lyons:
    "WWMD?!" What would Marco do?

    The question now looms large, stretching all the way from the seat once held by now-suspended Broward County Commissioner Josephus Eggelletion to the governor's mansion in Tallahassee. Who would have imagined that a conservative Republican from West Miami would have such an impact on the politics of Florida's biggest Democratic stronghold?

    That's the harsh reality, though, as the dust settles from this week's arrests of Eggelletion, Broward County School Board member Beverly Gallagher and former Miramar City Commissioner Fitzroy Salesman. What would have been a simple matter of selecting the best candidate now becomes a potential political risk.

    Clearly, no one knows that better than Gov. Charlie Crist, who finds himself embroiled in a real fight in the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate against former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio.
    "Crist faces risks in replacing Eggelletion" "Douglas C. Lyons: Crist faces risks in replacing Eggelletion".


    "Although Public Service Commissioner Lisa Edgar was cleared of ethics charges that she improperly communicated with a utility lobbyist about a pending case, the man who filed the complaint says her recollection doesn't match the audiotape and transcript of the hearing." "Probe of cleared PSC commissioner called incomplete".

    Related: "FPL to implement $900 million rate hike before PSC vote".

<< Home