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 Sunday, September 07, 2014

Scott "retreats into squishy equivocation" and "contradictory gibberish"

    Fred Grimm"You can hear it in Rick Scott’s answers, as the onetime champion of Florida's Definition of Marriage Amendment retreats into squishy equivocation."
    The governor now mumbles that while he “supports traditional marriage, consistent with the amendment approved by Florida voters in 2008,” he also “does not believe that anyone should be discriminated against for any reason.”

    As a policy statement, Scott was uttering contradictory gibberish, but as a gubernatorial candidate, he gave perfect voice to a new political reality: There’s no going back to 2008.

    "Certain politicians fear reality of same-sex rights." See also "Pam Bondi says opposition to gay marriage not personal vendetta."

    Scott an "environmental disaster"

    The Tampa Bay Times editors think Rick Scott's record is "an environmental disaster."

    Judicial candidates exchange outrage

    "Accusations of underhanded tactics, attack mailers and mutually exchanged outrage: These are all fixtures of the late-summer months during election years in Central Florida. But their appearance in the race for a seat on the Orange-Osceola circuit-court bench riled the local legal community this election season. And now The Florida Bar is investigating a complaint against the winning candidate's tactics." "Fiery judicial campaign riled legal community, sparked Bar probe."

    Expect Scott to go after public pensions

    Lloyd Dunkelberger: "Riding a strong stock market, the Florida pension fund had a robust year, earning 17.4 percent in returns and rising to $149 billion."

    But big changes may loom ahead for the nation's fourth-largest public pension fund, impacting the more than 1 million state workers, school employees, county workers and retirees who rely on the Florida retirement system.

    The direction those changes take will depend on the outcome of the governor's race.

    If Rick Scott is re-elected, you can expect a renewed push to move more public workers out of the traditional pension plan and into a 401(k)-type plan — which is currently an optional plan in the retirement system. . . .

    If Charlie Crist wins, he is more likely to side with major labor unions that are supporting his campaign, including the Florida Education Association, which argue that Florida's pension plan should not be changed.

    "Pension for state workers looms big in governor's race."

    "Other lobbyists consider him a rat"

    "Michael Kesti, who helped the FBI in a corruption sting that led to three convictions, says he doesn’t care that some other lobbyists consider him a rat." "Was Miami-Dade lobbyist a ‘patriot’ or ‘snitch’ in FBI sting of local politicians?."

    "Growing insurgency over excessive testing"

    The Orlando Sentinel editors write that the Lee County School "board's brief revolt against giving state-mandated standardized tests — including the new Common Core-aligned Florida Standards Assessment exams set to roll out in 2015 — was a first in the state. Members were proxies for a growing insurgency over excessive testing and reliance on the results for school grades, student graduation and teacher evaluations and pay." "Board's revolt signals need for testing timeout." See also "‘Opt out’ policy on state tests urged."

    Jebbie laff riot

    "As he mulls a presidential run in 2016, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush's friends and associates are urging top Republican fundraisers and strategists to avoid throwing their lot in with another candidate until Bush makes a decision." "Jeb Bush's team signals possible 2016 presidential run." Meanwhile, "Rubio tries to regain conservatives on immigration."

    “None of the above”

    "With thousands of voters skipping races on last month's primary ballot, some are privately wondering whether it's time to just put a 'none of the above' option on Florida ballots." "Is it time to let voters pick “none of the above”?."

    But I'm a lobbyist!

    "Students and Faculty Don’t Want Him, But Sen. John Thrasher Makes FSU Presidency’s Short List."

    "Who’s up for another tax cut?"

    Rick Christie: "Who’s up for another tax cut? Or better yet, who isn’t?"

    Apparently, Gov. Rick Scott — now promising $1 billion in tax and fee cuts over the next two years — is once again banking on that sentiment to help him retain the governor’s seat come November. He just hasn’t shared yet how he will make this happen, other than “with the input of the Legislature.”
    "Scott’s tax-, fee-cut promise will be hard to keep."

    "Many private charter schools are opening one day and closing the next"

    The Sun Sentinel editors: "To hear the charter schools people tell it, something is wrong with the administration of Broward County Public Schools that so many private charter schools are opening one day and closing the next." "Dueling visions of the crisis in charter schools."

    "Workers must decide whether to skip the water bill"

    John Romano: "The minimum wage debate is not a simple one. Neither side has a monopoly on the facts."

    Supporters of raising the minimum wage could cite studies from California-Berkeley and MIT that suggest higher pay means a healthier economy. Critics could produce their own studies that warn a higher minimum wage could result in a smaller workforce.

    Meanwhile, a generation of workers tries to decide whether it's better to skip the electric or water bill this month.

    "Minimum wage debate isn't simple, but the realities are stark."

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