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 Saturday, November 19, 2011

"The governor is following the wrong syllabus"

    The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "Gov. Scott is taking Florida Higher Ed 101, amassing information on the state university system as part of his push for an overhaul during the 2012 legislative session."
    Unfortunately, the governor is following the wrong syllabus. Though he is right to focus on steering more students into science, technology, engineering and math fields - an effort that began before he took office - his focus on professor salaries and tuition won't help make Florida become the jobs engine the governor envisions.
    "Going cheap is no bargain".

    The best medical system in the world

    "Boca Raton retiree's hospital bill: $71.28 for her 3-cent pill".

    Florida's job growth is in restaurants and bars

    "Florida's unemployment rate fell to 10.3 percent in October — the lowest rate in more than two years — as the state added about 9,500 jobs since the September report."

    Growth [in central Florida] and elsewhere has largely been driven by hiring in the leisure and hospitality industry, especially at restaurants and bars. Statewide, the sector is now adding more jobs than any other. Over the year, it has grown by 39,400 positions, a 4.2 percent increase.
    "Florida jobless rate dips to 10.3 percent".

    "A very dangerous thing"

    "HB 639 also declares that so-called 'reclaimed' water is not 'waters of the state' as defined in law until it has been discharged into a waterway. 'That is a very dangerous thing,' Audubon of Florida's Eric Draper said. But bill sponsor Rep. Dana D. Young said utilities need to be encouraged to build reclaimed water systems so water customers can use it." "Concern meets bill exempting treated wastewater from consumptive-use permitting".

    New Medicaid deputy secretary

    "Florida hires new Medicaid deputy secretary".

    "Crist OK'd Greer to be paid extra"

    "Depositions in the case of ousted Florida GOP Chairman Jim Greer yielded testimony on Thursday that then-Gov. Charlie Crist OK'd Greer to be paid extra for taking over party fundraising, the Orlando Sentinel reports." "Lobbyist tells attorneys Greer took over GOP fundraising with Crist OK".

    Week in Review

    "The Week in Review for Nov. 14-18".

    Good luck with that

    "South Florida Congressman Ted Deutch on Friday took up one cause of the Occupiers who are protesting across the country by introducing a constitutional amendment that would ban corporate money from the electoral process." "Deutch proposes to ban corporate money from elections".

    TeaBaggers hot for Newt

    "On the defense at the same time his position is rising in polls, GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich wooed a friendly Florida tea party crowd Thursday with sharp criticism of President Obama in his history professor style." "Gingrich defends consulting fees with historical style to friendly Jacksonville crowd".

    "Canals - some of the state's most polluted waterways"

    "After years of legal ink-slinging, missed deadlines and countless hours of mind-numbing scientific testimony, Florida's Department of Environmental Protection and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency tentatively agreed this month on pollution rules to protect Florida's lakes, rivers, estuaries, streams and springs."

    As for canals - some of the state's most polluted waterways - the deal is off if the state decides to exempt all canals in the state from the pollution rules, a move being pushed by some of the state's most powerful industries. If the state doesn't earn the EPA's approval by March, the EPA will impose its own rules - stricter than those the state now proposes - and could take over permitting altogether.
    "EPA tells Florida: Enforce rules on fertilizer in canals".

    "Confusing and contradictory results"

    "Florida has been grading its public schools A-to-F for more than a decade, using a system most educators and parents find easy to understand. During much of that time, many Florida schools also have been judged by the complicated federal No Child Left Behind act, resulting in sometimes confusing and contradictory results." "Trying to clarify school grading system, Florida seeks waiver from No Child Left Behind law".

    "Gambling decision requires public buy-in"

    The Miami Herald editorial board: "The sudden possibility that one or more full-scale gambling resorts may be coming to South Florida is an exciting prospect, but also a challenging one." "Betting on the future".

    Entrepreneurs in action

    "The top watchdog for Gov. Rick Scott’s administration has initiated an investigation into controversial contracts between juvenile justice administrators and a Miami-based program that offers services to delinquent girls at the detention center."

    The probe by Scott’s Chief Inspector General follows two related investigations by the Department of Juvenile Justice’s Inspector General and the Department of Financial Services’ Office of Fiscal Integrity — both of which concluded that the Girls Advocacy Project had misspent tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars. ...

    The Miami Herald reported Friday that the juvenile justice inspector general concluded an investigation into GAP’s contracting practices last June, finding the group misspent at least $111,000 meant to provide services for delinquent girls. The expenditures, a 20-page report said, included meals at expensive restaurants, hotel lodging, tickets to a film festival, gifts and flowers.

    The fiscal integrity office had recommended that DJJ seek a refund of the questioned expenditures.

    Though the report was formally released on June 23, Department of Juvenile Justice Secretary Wansley Walters did not seek a refund of the questioned expenses. Indeed, the agency signed a new contract with GAP a week later.
    "Scott’s office will review spending by juvenile program".

    "Good-government voters"

    Randy Schultz: "Palm Beach County cities ignore good-government voters".

    "The Sybil of Pinellas County"

    Daniel Ruth: "Perhaps when he awakens in the morning and preoccupies himself with which tin foil hat to wear to work, Pinellas County Commissioner Norm Roche looks into the mirror and sees a man of mystery staring back."

    After all, the commissioner is a man of many identities. Sometimes he is Roche, Norm Roche, crusading public servant inveighing against the evils of that Marxist/Fifth Columnist/Jane Fonda-inspired conspiracy to put zombie-inducing fluoride in the water.

    At other moments he is "Reality," a sort of online version of a Guy Fawkes mask, anonymously posting diatribes against his commission colleagues, gays in the military and race. V is for vainglory.

    And Roche is also the virtual impresario behind YRTTNRTT, which also has posted unavowed diatribes.

    Think of this guy as the Sybil of Pinellas County.
    "Norm Roche's anonymous rants are latest dance with daftness".

    Quarter horse barrel racing

    "Florida regulators on Friday rejected requests for administrative hearings lodged by opponents of a new form of pari-mutuel gambling: quarter horse barrel racing. Two associations representing flat-track quarter horse racing interests contend the barrel racing facility in Gretna, just west of Tallahassee, is an attempt to bypass state racing regulations to get a card game room and possibly slot machines." "Fla. dismisses barrel racing opponents' petitions".

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