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, December 03, 2011

Country clubs bring in foreigners to work on temporary H-2B work visas

    The Palm Beach Post editorial board: "In 2010, as The Post's John Lantigua revealed six months ago, Palm Beach County hotels and country clubs brought in more than 1,500 foreigners on temporary H-2B work visas to wash dishes, wait tables, clean hotel rooms and perform other duties that could easily be done by locals in need of work. In theory, the country clubs and resorts must advertise these jobs locally before hiring abroad, but they post the jobs months before the work begins and appear to do little to recruit." "Finish the job on jobs".

    Rubio's sex-trafficking law hits a GOP-bump

    "U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio is pushing for a tough anti-sex-trafficking law, but it's partly being held up due to concerns about abetting illegal immigration."


    the Trafficking Victims Protection Act would give victims temporary residency status to help catch the bad guys ... that could be a pathway to a perverse type of amnesty.

    And that's a problem in a nation where Congress has been unable to comprehensively address illegal immigration — a central issue in the Republican race for president where the word "amnesty" is a slur [at least for the GOP].
    "Immigration amnesty issue slows Sen. Marco Rubio's push for sex-trafficking legislation".

    Bondi, Atwater soft on foreclosure mills

    "Senate Democrats published a video Thursday heavily criticizing Attorney General Pam Bondi’s handling of foreclosure fraud cases in the state."

    The video contrasts Bondi’s approach with that of California Attorney General Kamala Harris. They contend Bondi is soft on big lenders implicated in the “robo-signing” controversy in which law firms acted as “foreclosure mills” by pushing through foreclosures with faulty paperwork. Harris, however, recently withdrew from a 50-state group working toward a settlement with the banks because she feared any deal at all would be too lenient on the banks. ...

    Sen. Eleanor Sobel, D-Hollywood, is also featured in the video, complaining of the lack of information surrounding an investigation into two state lawyers investigating foreclosure fraud who were pushed out by Bondi’s office in June – five months after she took office.

    June Clarkson and Theresa Edwards had recently reached a settlement with one of the foreclosure mills, but were forced to resign despite stellar performance reviews. Bondi asked for Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater’s inspector general to look into the matter, and an investigation began Aug. 8.

    But nearly four months after the investigation began it is yet to be completed, and Sobel says a public records request submitted to Atwater’s office for information surrounding the firings and the investigation has not been answered.
    "Senate Democrats hound Bondi on foreclosure fraud".

    Mack draws heavy fire from Republican rivals

    "U.S. Rep. Connie Mack officially entered the U.S. Senate race this week -- and drew heavy fire from Republican rivals as well as from liberal activists. In a move that had been widely expected for weeks, Mack announced that he was entering the crowded Republican primary field looking to challenge Democrat incumbent U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson in 2012." "Senate Hopeful Connie Mack Draws Fire From All Sides".

    "Orlando is a success story"

    "Bill Clinton to PBS: Barack Obama will be re-elected; Orlando is a success story".

    Logrolling in our time

    "Florida House and Senate redistricting panels will work off the other's map for its own chamber. House Reapportionment Committee Chairman Will Weatherford said Friday that he'd follow the Senate's example." "Fla. House, Senate cooperating on redistricting".

    'Ya reckon?

    "Web an increasing tool to link campaigns, voters".

    "Extra" unemployment benefits to expire Dec. 31

    "Nearly 82,000 Orlando-area residents are waiting to see whether Congress will extend extra unemployment benefits into 2012. The federal benefits — beyond the 26weeks now paid by the state — are set to expire Dec.31. A total of 384,000 Floridians receive unemployment benefits." "'Extra' jobless benefits may expire Dec. 31".

    Theme parks in a dither

    "Two-thirds to three-quarters of those expected to visit mega-casinos being proposed for Southeast Florida will likely have diverted their time -- and their money -- from other destinations in the region, state economists projected Friday afternoon." "Casinos to Attract Majority of Current Tourist Dollars Wherever They Open". Related: "State economists struggle to pin down casino bill revenue impact".

    The Orlando Sentinel editors: "Details too thin on gambling measure".

    Challenge to state water pollution proposal

    "The Florida Independent spoke with both the St. Johns Riverkeeper, one of the plaintiffs in the suit, and Earthjustice attorney David Guest, who is representing the plaintiffs, to discuss the potential effects of the petition." "Earthjustice, Riverkeeper discuss challenge to state water pollution proposal".


    "Barrel-racing foes win another round".


    "The veteran Tallahassee lobbyist is setting up his own firm, Barney Bishop Consulting LLC, with a website, a blog and a Twitter presence, the Naked Politics blog reports." "Barney Bishop returning to lobbying".

    Occupy Orlando given deadline

    "Occupy Orlando given deadline to move".

    Feds condemn conditions

    "Federal civil rights investigators said two Florida youth prisons were harsh and dangerous — and likely are indicative of conditions statewide." "Feds condemn conditions at Florida youth prisons".

    Happy holidays!

    Jeremy Wallace: "Southwest Florida’s political power players Bill Galvano and Nancy Detert are nearly assured of retaining their influence for the next decade, thanks to newly proposed redistricting maps. While the process of redrawing Florida’s political boundaries is just beginning in earnest, most experts agree that new maps released this week favor the two Republicans in both the short and long term." "Detert and Galvano are redistricting winners".

    GOPers' offer same old "circular arguments"

    Aaron Deslatte: "Some of the nation's most high-profile first-year GOP governors sat on a stage in Orlando at the Republican Governors Association conference last week and had an interesting discussion about job-creation."

    But it was tempered by the same circular arguments that overlook the inter-connected nature of education, government outlays and economic-development. Ohio Gov. John Kasich, like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Florida Gov. Rick Scott, has battled to diminish the political power of public-employee unions and teachers. He's beefed up incentives for businesses and cut regulations that slow down business deals, declaring, "I once saw a race between a statute and a glacier, and the glacier won."
    "Are voters souring on GOP tax-cut, 'job creation' strategy?".

    "Category 4 stimulus"

    Paul Flemming: "The answer might be a Category 4 stimulus".

    Charges of favoritism

    "In the midst of Florida's housing crisis, some state lawmakers want to move legal notices of foreclosures from newspapers to the Internet, sparking a debate over access to information and charges of favoritism." "Tampa firm wants foreclosure notices moved to the Web".

    "Bachmann tees off"

    "In South Florida, Bachmann tees off on rivals". See also "GOP contender Bachmann, in South Florida, calls for English to be official language of U.S. government".

    Head of the Miami-Dade Republican Party faces IRS lien

    "State Rep. Erik Fresen, R-Miami, who faced a foreclosure lawsuit in 2008 over his home mortgage, is facing another financial problem: a lien from the Internal Revenue Service. According to an IRS notice filed in Miami-Dade Circuit Court in May, Fresen owes $29,199 in unpaid taxes from 2004 and 2007. The lien was first reported by the Eye on Miami blog. Fresen, the head of the Miami-Dade Republican Party, said last week that he was unaware of the IRS notice." "IRS lien filed against state lawmaker".

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