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, March 01, 2011

"Merit-pay proposal is moving briskly"

    "A new teacher merit-pay proposal is moving briskly through the Florida Legislature. The Senate proposal, in fact, passed through its last committee stop last week and is ready for a floor vote on the second day of the upcoming session. The very similar House bill is not far behind." "Lawmakers fast-track new teacher merit pay bill". See also "Session to re-examine teacher pay".

    Haridopolos' sweetheart deal

    Fred Grimm: "Few authors in academic publishing have landed a book deal like that enjoyed by the Florida Senate president and celebrated author of an 175-page examination of . . . well . . . legislative history and processes."

    Few authors in academic publishing have landed a book deal like that enjoyed by the Florida Senate president and celebrated author of an 175-page examination of . . . well . . . legislative history and processes.

    Most authors of academic works collect a piddling 15 to 20 percent royalty on their sales, in a segment of the publishing industry that gets excited over the prospect of selling 5,000 copies. “The most I’ve ever made was enough to take my wife and myself to a nice dinner,” lamented Robert Jarvis, Nova Southeastern law prof and the author of 18 academic books, all of them actually published.

    Prof. Mike Haridopolos was paid $152,000 a [single] copy.
    "Despite the book deal, Sen. Haridopolos abandoned Brevard Community College and took his special insights to the University of Florida, where he wrangled an unadvertised, $75,000-a-year part-time job as a lecturer."
    Another remarkable deal. Here’s a fellow with no more than a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas (the Harvard of the Ozarks), who landed a sweet university gig in an era when his very Legislature was committing unspeakable acts upon higher education.

    No one has quite explained how Haridopolos the Senate president has managed to get so much money out of institutions with such desiccated budgets.
    "For Senate president Haridopolos, a sweetheart book deal".

    Opposition to Ricky's cuts

    "A majority of Floridians don't want the state to abandon either restoration of the Everglades or state-regulation of growth, according to a new poll commissioned by an environmental group opposed to budget cuts proposed by Gov. Rick Scott." "Poll shows support for 'Glades, growth management".

    "She insists it was lawful"

    "Miami-Dade prosecutors say the politician illegally solicited a $25,000 "donation" from a prominent developer; she insists the request was lawful." "Lawyers give opening statements in Spence-Jones bribery trial".

    "Classic chamber double-speak"

    Mike Thomas: "Scott went on CNN on Sunday to argue that Florida would be better off using ObamaBucks to expand our ports than build high-speed rail."

    Backing that up, the Florida Chamber of Commerce says better ports could bring us 143,000 new jobs.

    If ports are so great, how come Scott isn't putting any state money or any long-range planning into them? And this is classic chamber double-speak, talking about the need to invest in the future while at the same time glomming on to the latest scheme to slash taxes for its members.
    "Diverting rail cash to ports needs planning Scott hasn't considered".

    Rail dreams

    "Florida's governor joins others at a black-tie affair at the White House on Sunday evening. The Obama administration lobbies Rick Scott on high-speed rail, but Scott remains unmoved." "Gov. Scott goes to White House"

    The Orlando Sentinel editorial board: "The project's key backers must make the case for SunRail to the governor." "Saving commuter rail".

    Public employees at work

    "A wildfire in central Florida has burned more than 13,000 acres, prompted evacuations and destroyed some structures." "Central Fla. wildfire grows to 13,000 acres". Meanwhile, "Thousands expected for fallen officer's funeral".

    Scott can't get his facts straight

    "PolitiFact: Gov. Rick Scott reaches too far to compare state pension problems with Social Security's".

    "A giant step backward"

    The Saint Petersburg Times editorial board: "Attorney General Pam Bondi wants to make it harder for felons to get their civil rights restored. This is a giant step backward and a waste of resources with questionable long-term benefit to public safety." "Step backward on rights".

    Rod Smith's "unenviable task"

    Daniel Ruth: "Consider that you are Rod Smith, the newly minted chairman of the Florida Democratic Party, an unenviable task somewhat akin to being given the reins managing the careers of Mel Gibson, Lindsay Lohan and Amy Winehouse." "Smith finds few stars in Democratic skies".

    Teabaggers go after Alvarez

    "Alvarez’s base is largely supporting a campaign to recall him from office. To defeat the effort, Alvarez will have to rely on the support of county employees and their unions. He will have to court swing Anglo voters and pivotal black voters who have been wary of him in the past." "To win recall, Mayor Alvarez may need to appeal to new groups".

    Ricky's guy

    "Enterprise Florida names new president at Scott's urging".

    "Contest to replace U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson"

    "Tuesday is Election Day in the contest to replace U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson in the Florida Senate. Vying for her post: Democrat Oscar Braynon II and Republican Joe Celestin." "Voting takes place Tuesday in Florida Senate race".

    As Ricky fiddles ...

    "DEA sets up Fla. pill mill hotline".

    Former friends

    "A group of Holocaust survivors, who once considered themselves friends of U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, will be protesting his Miami Beach fundraiser with President Barack Obama on Friday because they say the Florida Democrat has broken a promise to them."

    Their unprecedented protest outside the swank Fontainebleau Hotel will be aimed at Obama, too.

    Three years ago, they say, Sen. Nelson promised South Florida survivors in his Washington office that he would file legislation to allow them to sue European insurers that sold their families millions of dollars in life insurance policies before World War II. During the 2008 presidential campaign, they say, Obama and vice presidential candidate Joe Biden gave their word of support, too.

    Now, a group of survivors, who were children during World War II, say Nelson and Obama have gone back on their word. They accuse them of siding with giant insurance companies over Holocaust survivors.
    "Holocaust survivors to protest Sen. Nelson’s fundraiser".

    First lesson: pay attention to teabaggery

    "Crist will lecture at Stetson law school".

    Tampa voters go to the polls

    "Tampa voters will go to the polls to elect a mayor and seven city council members from a crowded field of candidates ... Political analysts say it's unlikely any of the mayoral candidates - Bob Buckhorn, Dick Greco, Rose Ferlita, Tom Scott and Ed Turanchik - will get more than the 50 percent in Tuesday's citywide contest needed to avoid a runoff." "Tampa residents go to the polls to elect mayor".

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