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 Monday, October 24, 2011

"All that’s missing is flecks of spittle on his lips"

    Carl Hiaasen: "Every time Florida starts to fade from the national spotlight, somebody like Brad Drake comes along and gets everybody laughing at us again."
    Drake is the state representative who is sponsoring a bill to give Death Row inmates the choice between the electric chair or a firing squad – “a lead cocktail,” in Drake’s words.

    Not even Clint Eastwood could say the phrase, “lead cocktail,” with a straight face, but Drake claims to be serious. He says he’s frustrated by the questions about whether lethal injection, Florida’s current method of execution, is actually painless.
    "Drake is a Republican and proud Baptist from the Panhandle community of Eucheeanna. At the tender age of 36, he has already been named one of the World’s Worst Humans by TV commentator Keith Olbermann."
    Says Drake: “Don’t tell me I have to be sympathetic and humane to people who do something so heinous that a judge orders them to be executed.”

    You can see why death-penalty opponents are secretly elated to have this guy spouting off. All that’s missing is flecks of spittle on his lips.
    "A ‘lead cocktail’ or Old Sparky not...".

    Judges show no indication of easing off

    The Palm Beach Post editors: "If Gov. Scott deserves credit for proposing a new Everglades rescue plan, two other people deserve more credit."

    Alan Gold and Federico Moreno are federal judges in Miami supervising lawsuits against the state for failing to clean water that flows into the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge and Everglades National Park. Judges Gold and Moreno show no indication of easing off. We don't know how much Gov. Scott loves the Everglades, but we know that he hates lawsuits.
    "Scott pledges to come clean".

    "Huge problem for Florida Team Democrat"

    Nancy Smith: "Huge problem for Florida Team Democrat looking toward the 2012 elections: There's no sign of a miracle likely to come dancing out of the locker room later this week. What state Dems have now is a squad of 125-pound linebackers with the bench strength of the 1976 Tampa Bay Bucs, no viable game plan and a shrinking donor list propped up mostly by labor unions and trial lawyers." "Florida Democrats Need a Big Swig of Energy Boost".

    Is Vern Buchanan "Crazy? Self-defeating?"

    Jeremy Wallace: "It is not often that a member of Congress tips off reporters to a confidential federal investigation about himself. But that is essentially what U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan did last week when he instructed his campaign to tell select members of the media that the Justice Department was investigating his campaign."

    Crazy? Self-defeating?

    Hardly, said Michael R. Shannon, a political consultant based in Virginia who specializes in crisis management.

    He said Buchanan, R-Longboat Key, may be following one of the oldest rules in the political crisis management playbook.

    “Control the release of the information,” said Shannon, president of Mandate: Message, Media & Public Relations. “By releasing the information now he avoids having to react to someone else releasing it later.”

    Shannon said once a campaign begins reacting to an investigation, it looks defensive, which can translate into appearing suspicious to voters. By raising the issue himself, Buchanan can give the appearance he took responsibility for the story, even though he has refused to personally talk to reporters.

    Just as important, Shannon said, Buchanan puts the information out more than a year before the election. By doing so, he can claim it is old news if it arises later during his campaign against Democrat Keith Fitzgerald.
    "Rep. Buchanan gets the jump on Justice Department".

    "Nuclear socialism"

    "Despite critics' cries of "nuclear socialism," the Florida Public Service Commission is expected to approve $337 million in utility rate hikes on Monday." "PSC Set to OK $337 Million Rate Hike For New Nuclear Plants, Upgrades". The Sarasota Herald Tribune editorial board: "Nuclear power is a bad bet".

    Monday Morning Reads

    "Monday Morning Reads: Rick Scott's priorities and Genting's vision".

    Imagine the backlash

    "GOP legislators ponder easing Florida drug laws, adding treatment".

    Global warning to have disastrous effects on SoFla

    Fred Grimm: "The rising sea will wash across great swaths of South Florida. Salt water will contaminate the well fields. Roads and farmland and low-lying neighborhoods will be inundated. The soil will no longer absorb the kind of heavy rainfalls that drenched South Florida last weekend. Septic tanks will fail. Drainage canals won’t drain. Sewers will back up. Intense storms will pummel the beachfront. Mighty rainfalls, in between droughts, will bring more floods."

    The economic losses and the mitigation costs associated with the effects of global warming over the next few decades will be overwhelming. It will cost a medium-sized town like Pompano Beach hundreds of millions just to salvage its water and sewage systems.

    A sobering study released by Florida Atlantic University contemplated the effects of global warming in specific terms, particularly for South Florida, considered one of the more vulnerable metropolitan areas in the world, with six million residents clustered by the ocean, living barely above sea level.

    The study from FAU’s Center for Urban and Environmental Solutions, adding to an overwhelming scientific consensus about the disastrous effects of global warming, and along with growing hard evidence that temperature changes are already altering the environment, ought to have sent tremors through the halls of government.

    Except it didn’t.
    "Sea levels will rise, washing away climate deniers".

    Immigration minefield for GOPers

    "Perhaps more than any other issue, illegal immigration is a tricky topic for the GOP contenders. Each time they speak, candidates risk offending someone — Republicans who want a crackdown or the growing number of Hispanic voters who are U.S. citizens." "Immigration issue a minefield in Republican race". Related: "Medical help for illegal immigrants could haunt Mitt Romney".

    Florida's finest

    "While on vacation 3 Manatee firefighters helped save a life".

    "Ethnic gamesmanship"

    The Saint Petersburg Times editorial board: "Republican state Sen. Alan Hays of Umatilla is either woefully ignorant or suffers from a befuddled anti-Hispanic bias, or both." "Ethnic gamesmanship has no place in reapportionment".

    Tuition rates of U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants

    "U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants must pay out-of-state tuition in Florida. A lawsuit has been filed to overturn the policy." "U.S.-citizen children of immigrants protest higher tuition rates". See also "Legislator wants to change law that denies in-state tuition to students with undocumented parents".

    "Scott is aiming higher"

    "Months after making controversial changes in the public school system, Gov. Rick Scott is aiming higher - at state colleges and universities, which he wants on the front lines of his fight to create jobs in Florida." "Gov. Scott shifts focus to colleges' role in creating jobs".

    On anthropology

    "Is anthropology considered a STEM field?".

    "Central Florida road projects could be postponed"

    "As much as $500 million worth of Central Florida road projects could be postponed in coming years as the state tries to find money to pay for its share of the Wekiva Parkway." "State could delay $500M in road projects to pay for Wekiva Parkway".

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