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 27, 2014

Grubbing for wingnuts

    "Cuba has allowed Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio to reclaim the national spotlight that recently had focused on Jeb Bush."
    Bush’s Dec. 16 announcement that he will “actively” explore a presidential bid had cast a shadow over Rubio’s own future as a likely 2016 White House candidate. Pundits quickly branded Rubio a loser in the presidential sweepstakes because both he and Bush claim the same political base, and most say Bush has the stronger hold.

    Key Florida donors declared their support for Bush, the former Florida governor and scion of a political dynasty. Some even suggested Rubio run another time. Media interest in Rubio, one of the Senate’s most charismatic and eloquent members, started to dry up.

    "That changed in less than 24 hours when President Barack Obama said he would move toward normalizing relations with Cuba."
    Rubio’s vigorous opposition to the president’s Cuba policy instantly made him a top get for CNN and other news networks, forcing skeptics to re-evaluate his presidential chances. . . .

    In interview after interview, Rubio, the 43-year-old son of Cuban immigrants [not 'exiles,' mind you,] passionately defended the former U.S. policy of isolating Cuba diplomatically and economically, and vowed to block anyone Obama nominates as ambassador to the communist country. Bush offered similar criticisms, but Rubio quickly became the face of the opposition to the president’s stunning move. . . .

    But simply opposing the president's decision appears unlikely to score many political points among voters nationwide. A Washington Post-ABC News poll conducted last week, after Obama's announcement, found 64 percent of Americans support establishing ties with Cuba.

    Miami lawyer Al Cardenas, a former Florida Republican Party chairman who mentored Rubio and is close to Bush, said Bush’s potential candidacy certainly complicates Rubio’s decision-making.

    That observation was confirmed by a Tampa Bay Times survey, conducted after Bush's announcement last week, of more than 150 of the state's most plugged-in political players — veteran campaign professionals, lobbyists, fundraisers and political scientists.

    Eight in 10 said Bush would be stronger than Rubio in the Republican presidential primary, while nine in 10 said the former governor would be stronger in the general election. Most also doubted Rubio would be able to raise enough to be competitive if Bush were also in the race. Rubio doesn’t need to run for the White House to speak out on Cuba, Cardenas said. The senator will get that platform starting next month, when he becomes chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere.

    "Cuba shift puts spotlight on Rubio."


    "The Florida Legislature will have to balance privacy and openness in 2015 as members again have filed bills creating exemptions to the state’s public records law, still considered the nation’s best." "Lawmakers will again consider loopholes to state’s open records law."

    Jebbie plays pretend

    "Jeb Bush’s presidential ambitions are looking healthier now that he’s dropped Obamacare."

    Bush announced Wednesday he would resign from Tenet Healthcare Corp.’s board of directors, effective Dec. 31.
    "It’s a significant move because Tenet CEO Trevor Fetter has said Obamacare swelled the ranks of people seeking care at the company’s hospitals, driving revenue and directly profiting Bush, according to The Los Angeles Times."
    The company paid Bush $2.3 million from 2007-13, not including lucrative stock worth several million more, according to American Thinker.
    "Jeb Bush resigns from company that cashed in on Obamacare." See "Jeb Bush to resign from board of health care company."

    Idiot wind

    "The Florida congressional delegation had a busy 2014 and as the year ends, there are a few new faces representing the Sunshine State in Washington, D.C." "2014 a Big Year for Florida Delegation and Presidential Hopefuls".

    Funny how that works

    "During his campaign for Florida’s 26th congressional district, Rep.-elect Carlos Curbelo wasn’t shy about collecting thousands of dollars of campaign contributions from individuals directly tied to corporations that benefited from his vote on the Miami-Dade School Board." "Curbelo’s campaign got big boost from Miami-Dade School Board vendors."

    "Cuban-American Political Donations Lowest in Years"

    "Anti-Castro Cuban-American Political Donations Lowest in Years."

    "Shame on the PSC"

    The Miami Herald editors: "Florida Power & Light paints a glowing portrait of a proposal to charge customers some $191 million a year over decades as an investment in natural gas purchases from an Oklahoma company engaged in fracking." "Shame on the PSC."

    "Low-key inauguration"

    "Fresh off his statewide 'jobs jamboree' victory tour, Gov. Rick Scott is getting ready to be sworn in for a second term." "Scott gets ready for a low-key inauguration." See also "Republicans raise $500k for Scott inauguration."

    Jax Firefighters Targeted in Drive By Shooting

    "Jacksonville firefighters are taking extra precautions after a firefighter was injured when shots were fired at firefighters fueling up a fire truck." "Jacksonville firefighters take precautions after [apparently targeted in the drive-by] shooting." See also "Jacksonville Firefighters Targeted in Drive By Shooting."

    Americans comfortable with political dynasties

    "Between Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton, the two potential rivals have three presidents and a U.S. senator in the branches of their family trees. And three governors, as well." "Americans appear comfortable with Bush, Clinton political dynasties."

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