Since 2002, daily Florida political news and commentary


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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 Friday, November 13, 2009

RPOFer "'emergency' meeting"

    William March: "In another political blow to Gov. Charlie Crist, dissension in the state Republican Party broke open Thursday as a group of party officials demanded an 'emergency' meeting to discuss party problems, apparently including grievances against Chairman Jim Greer."
    The demand for the meeting is the strongest sign so far of internal fractiousness in the party, which has been linked mainly to the U.S. Senate primary between Crist and former House Speaker Marco Rubio. ...

    Rubio, appealing to conservatives, has mounted an unexpectedly strong challenge to Crist, a moderate, for the Senate nomination. Among Rubio's supporters are party activists and officials who are often more conservative and ideological than rank-and-file Republicans.

    Crist supporters denied that the demand for a meeting, contained in a letter sent to Greer by members of a party governing committee, was caused by dissatisfaction with Greer.
    "GOP fight wounds Crist ally Greer".

    "Greer and his main benefactor, Gov. Charlie Crist, are fending off a near-mutiny among party activists, elected officials and fundraisers fed up with what they see as inept political operations, dirty campaign tactics, unfair treatment of candidates (such as U.S. Senate hopeful Marco Rubio of Miami), dubious fundraising practices and lavish spending." "Some Republicans see state GOP chief as burden"

    "Brevard Republican Party Chairman Jason Steele has a message for the state chairman of his party: Quit now."
    "I am calling for the governor of the state of Florida to ask our chairman, Jim Greer, to resign," Steele announced during a Thursday afternoon news conference in Viera.

    "I think it's in the best interest of the Republican Party of Florida," he said. "I think it's in the best interest of all of the people that are involved in Republican politics. And I think it's very imperative that it be done as quickly as possible."

    Steele said he believes Greer and other state-level party leaders secretly orchestrated the "Twittergate" scandal. Earlier this year, an imposter using the Twitter account JasonSteele31 issued derogatory messages about torpedoing the GOP, bankrupting the Brevard Republican Executive Committee, drinking alcohol during morning hours and other topics.
    "Brevard GOP chief calls for state head to quit".

    Isaac ... you're out

    Paul Flemming: "Erin Isaac, communications director for Gov. Charlie Crist, is leaving her six-figure job to pursue the ever-popular 'other interests.'"

    She took the job in June 2007 as a 29-year-old who'd worked as press secretary in the governor's office and before that on Crist's gubernatorial campaign.

    The job description includes a bright, red target that must be worn on the back at all times, and Isaac has had her share of arrows slung her way. I had only a couple of differences with Isaac that escalated to full-scale antagonism.
    "A communications director's job ends about 3 a.m.".

    "Crist has embarrassed himself"

    The Tampa Tribune editorial board asks "What's with Charlie Crist?" "The self-styled 'people's governor,' one of Florida's most popular political figures and certainly one of its most likeable, seems to have lost his touch."

    Polls show him still leading in his campaign for U.S. Senate, but he's losing ground to rival Marco Rubio, the former House speaker, who has picked up grass-roots Republican support from party activists most likely to vote in the primary.

    And so Crist, who has governed from the center to the frustration of his party's conservative base, is now lurching to the right - trying to prove his conservative bonafides and making a spectacle of himself doing it.

    In the last few weeks Crist has embarrassed himself by being less than honest with constituents.
    "Crist has lost his invincible touch".

    Five gears in reverse: "Crist: I'd have supported "different form" of stimulus bill in U.S. Senate".

    Daily Rothstein

    "FBI doubts Rothstein's scheme a 'one-man show'".


    The Tallahassee Democrat editorial board: "More 'robust' is the aim of the energy goals that the Public Service Commission is expecting now."

    For some time, the PSC has been stalling in the matter of getting electric utilities to reward customers for using less energy through incentives such as rebates on purchasing solar water heaters, and through more education.

    The board, an independent quasi-judicial appointed body, has been putting off a decision on updating the Energy Efficiency Conservation Act even in the face of the Legislature's uncharacteristically requiring much stronger energy efficiency standards to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    The stalling this time — the official postponement of its vote until Dec. 1 — was a good thing, however.
    "This time, the PSC's delay is smart".

    Herald says union endorsements "problematic"

    "There will be a runoff Tuesday for the next commissioner to serve Miami's District 4, a seat held by Tomás Regalado before he was elected mayor ... Mr. Suarez is right to point to Mr. Reyes' union endorsements as problematic." "Miami runoff".

    Oh really? Support from working people speaking through their duly elected unions is "problematic"? This "editorial" statement from an anti-union editorial board that never fails to bring us corporate journalism at its worst? Recall when The Herald's endorsement "of President Reagan for a second term prompted the newspaper's editor to resign because The Herald's publisher had overruled an editorial board decision to endorse Walter F. Mondale"?

    Not a lot of resigning going on these days. The editors know their place.

    More anti-union garbage from The Herald

    The Miami Herald editorial board: "That Mr. Timoney's leadership produced a vote of no confidence from the police union speaks to the chief's wise focus of putting public safety ahead of any union-run popularity contest." "Miami's new mayor signals a new day".

    Rubio in Seminole County

    Scott Maxwell reports that Seminole County was "the scene of a Marco Rubio fundraiser this week. Among those who attended the event Tuesday night at the Oviedo home of lawyer Ben Newman (who estimated a haul of more than $15,000): State Reps. Sandy Adams and Scott Plakon, Orange Property Appraiser Bill Donegan and former U.S. Rep. Tom Feeney.".

    Eating their own

    "Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Karen Thurman has dumped the head of the party in Miami-Dade, claiming he tried to shake down local candidates for money and browbeat staff members and elected officials."

    Thurman immediately replaced B.J. Chiszar with Miami attorney Richard Lydecker, who served as Manny Diaz's finance chairman during his 2001 mayoral campaign in Miami. Lydecker has not been active in the local party and said he was sworn in as a member of the executive committee less than one week ago.

    Chiszar's ouster came just days after he called for Thurman's resignation in a widely circulated screed against the party's leadership.
    "Miami-Dade Democrats' new chairman was Diaz fundraiser in 2001".

    2012 dreaming

    "Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is on course to tick all but one of the Gulf Coast states off his travel list between this Friday and next April. Pawlenty traveled to the seaside Florida city of Naples for a speech Friday." "Pawlenty checks more states off his travel list".

    How many wingnuts can you fit in a band shell?

    "Conservatives jammed Lake Eola Park on Thursday night as the Tea Party Express ended its national tour in Orlando. They repeated familiar themes: Higher spending, government intervention and President Barack Obama's health-care overhaul are an affront to American values."

    On the last stop of a national bus tour that began Oct. 25 in San Diego, more than a dozen speakers excoriated Obama's policies. It was at least the fourth time this year that frustrated taxpayers have staged a tea-party event in Orlando. ...

    "Homemade signs bobbed in the sea of an estimated 4,000 enthusiasts*, including "This change is unconstitutional," "We are not your ATM," "Stop socialism," "Cash for clunkers — Trade in your congressman" and " Glenn Beck for President."
    "Tea Party Express ends tour in Orlando". See also "Thousands Protest ‘Wasteful’ Washington Spending At Orlando Tea Party ".

    Cruel and unusual punishment?

    "Does the Constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment mean the state can't imprison someone with psychiatric problems when mental treatment is available?" "D'Alemberte argues for mental-health treatment".

    Water conservation

    The Sun-Sentinel editorial board: "Recent years of rain-stingy skies have taught Florida a vital lesson: No longer can the Sunshine State afford to indulge its water guzzling ways. We've found out the hard way that water is not the infinite resource we've long treated it as, so conservation is the best way to ensure adequate supplies for future generations." "Water conservation a must in Florida".

    Promises, promises ...

    "Orlando tech firm predicts bonanza of high-paying jobs".

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