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 Tuesday, December 08, 2009

AFL-CIO pulls rail coup

    Update: Catherine Dolinski: "Senate passes rail bill; now heads to Crist"
    Mike Williams, president of the state AFL-CIO, announced in an email message that a deal had been struck. Though he included no details, Williams said:

    "The Florida AFL-CIO has achieved compromise with the Florida Department of Transportation and South Florida Regional Transportation Authority regarding HB 1B that addresses our serious objections and concerns voiced at the start of special session concerning job preservation and passenger safety on Florida's railways. After long negotiations and discussions with Senate leadership and Senate Democrats, the primary concern of the Florida AFL-CIO, the preservation of the existing high quality rail jobs. Our goal of stopping the displacement of federally-qualified railroad workers from Florida's passenger and freight railroads will not be compromised as experienced rail workers will continue to maintain Florida's railways."
    See also "Fla. Legislature clears way for rail systems", "Rail package crawls through Senate", "Senate saves Tri-Rail" and "Senate passes SunRail, 27-10" ("Following an 11th-hour deal with labor unions, the Senate pushed through a rail package which paves the way for the $1.2 billion SunRail after just a few hours of debate.")

    Jim Saunders: "Setting up a Senate showdown, the Florida House overwhelmingly approved a bill Monday that is pivotal for creating a commuter-rail system in Volusia and three other counties." "Senate divided on area rail bill".

    "A bill fast-tracking Florida rail projects raced out of the House with strong support Monday but slowed to a crawl in the Senate, barely surviving a 5-4 committee vote." "Florida Senate remains close on rail bill". See also: "Florida Senate remains close on rail bill". Related: "Lawmakers switch sides as Senate takes up rail issue" and "Aaron Deslatte: Unions and FDOT are engaged in a mortal struggle for railways".


    "As speaker of the Florida House, Marco Rubio voted for a controversial SunRail commuter rail project and published a book of policy ideas touting investments in rail, highways and transit as huge job creators." "Candidate Marco Rubio takes middle road on Florida rail projects". See also "Rubio declines answer on rail".

    The Orlando Sentinel editorial board: "Rail: The time is now". The Saint Petersburg Times editors: "Senate's turn to improve rail bill".

    "State Sen. Al Lawson, Florida's longest-serving legislator, said Monday he is not interested in switching his political sights to a race for chief financial officer next year." "Lawson won't enter race for CFO".


    "McCollum and Sink, along with Gov. Charlie Crist, make up the board that manages investments for the state. Sink thinks the board should be expanded by at least two members — including one who has investment experience. McCollum opposes the expansion and instead suggested expanding the advisory council that makes recommendations to the board." "Sink, McCollum differ on Fla. investment board".

    Rivera in hot water?

    "Florida House budget Chairman David Rivera may have violated a fund-raising ban during a legislative session by passing out envelopes with suggestions for donations Friday at a campaign event." "Fund-raiser says her event sought money for Miami Rep. Rivera during session".

    Medicaid delays

    "Doctors and advocates suing the state used Florida officials' own words against them during opening arguments of a trial Monday by playing video clips of top health officials lamenting health care delays for Medicaid patients." "Attorneys: Fla. officials lamented Medicaid delays".

    "No hope"?

    The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "Tony Masilotti, Warren Newell and Mary McCarty won't be at the U.S. Supreme Court today, and the court should give them no hope of getting their freedom earlier than expected." "Uphold honest services law".

    "Cleaning polluted surface waters no 'burden' to Florida"

    The Daytona Beach News Journal editorial board: "Too few Floridians are aware of the deadly nutrient overloads in Florida's surface waters. Those nutrients ] primarily nitrogen and phosphorus from lawn and farm fertilizers and sewer plant discharges ] reduce dissolved oxygen and make the water cloudy, preventing sunlight's penetration. This encourages algae blooms harmful to aquatic plants and animals, coral reefs and drinking water supplies. " "Nutrient overload".

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