"Bill McCollum picked up a hefty check from taxpayers Friday -- a financial lifeline for his campaign for governor struggling to keep pace with his free-spending primary opponent Rick Scott. ... The cash infusion is a timely boost for McCollum, the state's attorney general. Fundraising totals released Friday show he was down to about $540,000, about half of the cost of a week's worth of major TV advertising." "Taxpayers give McCollum $1.3 million boost". Related: "Rick Scott's case against Florida's public financing of candidates".
"Not leaving anything to chance"
"It's not often that obscurity is an asset in a high-profile, statewide election. "
But that appears to be the tactic both Democratic candidates in the race for governor are using."Her long-shot opponent, Brian Moore, hopes his anonymity might earn him a surprise victory like South Carolina's Alvin Greene, a virtual stealth candidate who defeated a prominent Democrat there last month."
Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, the frontrunner in the Aug. 24 primary, is biding her time while former Columbia/HCA CEO Rick Scott and state Attorney General Bill McCollum sling mud at one another in the Republican primary.
Both Sink and Moore consider the South Carolina primary an object lesson."Low-profile Alex Sink faces even more obscure opponent Brian Moore in Democratic race for Florida governor".
"I don't take any election lightly," Sink said. "My name will be on the ballot for the primary. All we have to do is look and see what happened in South Carolina. So we're not leaving anything to chance."
Moore, an independent-turned-Socialist-turned-Democrat, said, "It's not as Don Quixote as it seems. My rationale is Alex Sink is actually a relatively unknown person. She's only run for statewide office once. I've been on the ballot twice in Florida. And, she's not that exciting. She's low-keying it. She's not anywhere. A lot of people don't even know who Alex Sink is."
Four years ago, Sink ran for office for the first time as a virtual unknown in the race for chief financial officer.
The best they can do?
"The 11th Congressional District that includes most of Tampa and snakes through St. Petersburg and Bradenton is a Democratic stronghold. But the race for the seat held since 2006 by Kathy Castor, D-Tampa, has drawn four Republicans and one Democrat."
None of the challengers has held office. But one, Eddie Adams Jr., a Republican, twice has lost to Castor."Congress race puts focus on economy".
We were sure this "concerned citizen" would jump into the race.
Does Scott measure up?
"Does Republican gubernatorial candidate Rick Scott measure up to his $25 million television advertising blitz up close and in person?" "Rick Scott: Meeting the man behind the image". Related: "GOP Governor candidate Rick Scott explains space options, jobs plan".
Meek has yet to catch fire among voters
"Senate candidate Kendrick Meek remains question mark to many Democrats". See also "Meek wants muscle in message".
"Tropical Storm Bonnie packed less punch than expected, but it still caused delays in BP's effort to permanently plug the damaged oil well in the Northern Gulf." "Dud of a storm delays BP's fixes".
See also "As ships return to oil spill as 'Bonnie' breezes past, new concerns arise on micro-droplets oil plumes", "Ships head back to oil well, ready to resume work", "Pensacola hotels post gains despite oil spill", "video", "" and "".
"The GOP primary race to succeed term-limited state Senate President Jeff Atwater in District 25 is, at least in part, a contest between styles of leadership. State Rep. Carl Domino of Jupiter trumpets the fact that he has attended all the 'delegation meetings' convened during the past several years where Palm Beach County residents met with local legislators. He says his opponent, state Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff of Fort Lauderdale, attended fewer than half. " "Bogdanoff, Domino vie to succeed Atwater in Senate District 25 GOP race".
"More Corporate Relocation Inquiries Landing in Palm Beach".
RISEP report on economic stimulus investments
From the Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy: "This [.pdf] report is the third in a series that looks at the opportunity landscape in Florida before the recession, and how economic stimulus investments should be targeted towards making quality of life opportunities accessible to all communities, particularly communities of color. This installment focuses on the impact of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) and its efforts to rehabilitate foreclosed and abandoned housing for the benefit of neighborhoods and residents, and the importance of creating job opportunities in local neighborhoods to fully address the economic crisis." "Recovering from Crisis: A review of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program in Florida’s economic recovery".
Boyd makes no apologies
"U.S. Rep. Allen Boyd, who switched his vote on national health care, told Big Bend Democrats on Saturday he makes no apology for supporting the final package." "Democratic voters meet candidates".
"A few of W.'s friends"
TPM: "From reprisals to racist and homophobic slurs, what a few of W.'s friends did with their power."
The Federal Air Marshal office in Orlando has been plagued with scandal over the past few years, most famously for a Jeopardy-style game supervisors played with derogatory categories for African-Americans and people they thought were gay."Scandals Of Orlando's Air Marshal's Office: Racist Games, Rampant Discrimination And Love For W.".
With the special agent in charge of the office, Bill Reese, announcing his retirement this week -- presumably due to allegations of discrimination and impropriety, although TSA officials say it's because of personal reasons -- we thought we'd recap some of what's allegedly been going in the office.
"What the whole appellate court structure is about"
Jac Wilder VerSteeg: "At least two high-profile people recently have been freed from prison after the U.S. Supreme Court weakened the law covering honest services fraud, the same law used to send three former Palm Beach County commissioners to prison."
Conrad Black, the media mogul with a Palm Beach home, was granted bail while he appeals his 2007 conviction. A federal judge also ordered the release of Kevin Geddings, the former North Carolina lottery commissioner convicted in 2006. Geddings is seeking to have his conviction vacated in light of the Supreme Court ruling. Prosecutors actually support his release."Honest look at fraud law: Palm Beach County's felons deserve review.".
In last week's column, I asked whether ex-Commissioners Mary McCarty, Warren Newell and Tony Masilotti had been treated unfairly or "unethically," since they had been imprisoned based on a statute the Supreme Court now has called into question.
Whether what happened to them is unfair or unethical, though, is separate from the question of whether it was legal. The law was fully in force when the three went to prison. Obviously, it was legal to use it.
The fact that people can go to prison for acts that suddenly no longer are crimes is awful but inevitable. At least in this country, we try to perfect our system, which is what the whole appellate court structure is about.
The Sun Sentinel editorial board: "It's another ambitious land purchase that promises to aid the massive restoration of the Florida Everglades. This one, though, seems simpler and more doable. Unlike the state's ongoing efforts to purchase 73,000 acres of U.S. Sugar property south of Lake Okeechobee, the purchase proposed by the federal government appears to pass muster as a more straight-forward deal. It should be pursued to improve both Florida's natural habitat and the water quality flowing into Lake Okeechobee." "New Everglades restoration deal helps Lake Okeechobee".
"Once the friendliest contest around, the Democratic primary race for attorney general is turning negative as the primary nears." "Democratic attorney general contest turns negative".
The "age" thing
"Candidates hope voters look past young age".