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, April 10, 2016

"Listening to a shameless hypocrite"

    John Romano: "It's interesting to note that when legislators talk enthusiastically about providing parents with choices, the back-door beneficiaries are often charter and private schools run by businesses. And when legislators deny parents a choice about the [Florida Standards Assessment], the backdoor beneficiary is a testing corporation with a six-year, $220 million contract."
    In other words, it might be less about "choice'' and more about commerce.

    So the next time you hear a lawmaker say parents know best, you might consider the possibility that you're listening to a shameless hypocrite.

    "The state has become a slave to a testing company with no local oversight or accountability."
    It has allowed the education system to be swallowed by a single assessment. It has ignored parents and forsaken flexibility.

    The problem isn't that Florida children are failing tests.

    It's that Florida is failing children by obsessing over a test.

    "Florida scores high on hypocrisy and low on integrity in school tests."

    Nelson remaining above the Senate primary fray

    "The race between Alan Grayson and Patrick Murphy for the Democratic U.S. Senate nomination got even more heated this week, but their would-be colleague Bill Nelson is remaining above the fray." "Nelson remains neutral in U.S. Senate race."

    Florida, merely "a low-tax, low-wage state"

    The Tallahassee Democrat editors: "Shelling out millions in public money to private corporations was never a novel, responsible or sustainable strategy for creating jobs in the Sunshine State. That's why the Florida Legislature's decision not to spend any money over the next year on a job incentive program has forced a healthy and overdue debate. This is an opportunity for Florida to assess its strengths and weaknesses, better target quality jobs and industries and draw a clear line between promoting economic growth and corporate welfare."

    The loss of walking around money should force the governor to recast Florida as more than a low-tax, low-wage state. It is easy enough to sell the state for its year-round good weather, competitive wages and relaxed regulatory environment. Major employers, though, especially those in emerging technology industries, are looking for talent, proximity to industrial hubs and quality transportation, schools and other amenities. In his letter to the Enterprise Florida board, the governor still doesn't seem to get it, calling for new ways to promote Florida on the cheap.
    "Rethinking Florida's job recruitment efforts."

    "DCF Backs Off Protecting LGBT Children"

    "The Florida Department of Children and Families is under fire for backing off of part a proposal that would protect LGBT kids who live in group homes from discrimination — including so-called 'conversion therapy' aimed at changing their sexual orientation." "Bowing to Baptist and Catholic Pressure, DCF Backs Off Protecting LGBT Children from Discrimination."

    "Unfair — and, frankly, cold-hearted"

    The Palm Beach Post editors: "This month, about 300,000 Floridians who qualify for food stamps began facing the consequences of new rules requiring that they go to work. It’s a reasonable policy change, on paper. But for many who can’t find or hold a job, it means facing emptier pantries."

    Gov. Rick Scott’s administration justifies the action by saying the economy is improving and jobs are easier to find. And yes, Florida’s jobless rate has fallen to an eight-year low of 4.9 percent. More than 1 million jobs have been added to the state since January 2011, low-paying though many may be.

    But the jobs aren’t distributed evenly across this very diverse state. . . .

    The Scott administration needs to look at more than raw economic numbers when making decisions that can so intimately affect the lives of thousands of Florida’s most vulnerable citizens. At the least, it should allow for regional variances in the economic rebound, and ask the federal government to drop the mandate for the 21 lagging counties.

    We agree that food stamps should be issued in a way that discourages a culture of dependency. But where jobs are in short supply, it is unfair — and, frankly, cold-hearted — to impose a regulation that will make people go hungry.

    "Work rules on food stamps will hit Florida’s poorest hard."

    She didn't run alone

    "Firefighters run 5K with daughter of fallen fireman."

    "Florida cannot afford to get this wrong again"

    The Tampa Bay Times editorial board: "It took more than a decade,"

    but Florida finally has reached a settlement in a class-action lawsuit aimed at improving access to medical and dental care for children on Medicaid. The agreement should make health care more accessible to poor children who struggled to find doctors willing to treat them under the state's dismal Medicaid reimbursement rates. The state should work hard to meet and exceed the goals agreed upon in the settlement. Florida cannot afford to get this wrong again.
    "Medicaid settlement should help kids."

    Empty suits on the sidelines

    "President Barack Obama’s historic trip to Cuba last month marked the culmination of a foreign policy he laid out eight years ago as a candidate, when he broke with his predecessors and pledged to sit down with unfriendly dictators because punishing them with silence seemed 'ridiculous.'"

    Left out of the conversation: anyone who disagreed, including the eight Cuban Americans — Republican and Democrat — in Congress 57 years after the Cuban revolution. Half of them — one senator and three representatives — hail from Miami, the new city exiles made in Havana’s old image.

    For eight years, they’ve had zero input on the issue on which some of them built their political careers. And now they face the prospect of four or eight more years of the same, with a new White House tenant come January. Castro has promised to retire in 2018.

    "Miami’s Cuban-American political guard risks losing any influence it has left at a time when Cuba could undergo its most sweeping changes."

    “I’m not hurt at all — it frees up my day,” Miami Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen said of not talking to Obama. “He’s of no consequence to us.”
    "Once mighty, Miami’s political guard left out of conversation on Cuba."

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