Saturday, May 14, 2016

Our digest of, and commentary on today's Florida political news and punditry.

Picketers to hit Disney Sunday Morning

"The Reedy Creek Fire Fighters Association Local 2117, which represents emergency workers serving Walt Disney World, plans to picket Sunday morning in and around the Springs' parking garages."

It will be the first time in decades the union has demonstrated on Disney property.
"Contract negotiations have stalled with Reedy Creek, the Disney-controlled government agency that employs firefighters and paramedics serving the resort. The two sides reached an impasse in negotiations last year. Firefighters and paramedics have been working without a contract for almost a year and a half. The two sides disagree about pay and insurance."
"Here we are asking for peanuts, and Reedy Creek spent millions of millions of dollars on these parking garages, and they won't even work with me on a contract," [Union president Tim Stromsnes said]
"Firefighters' union plans demonstration at Disney."

It could be worse, we could be seeing his "Palm Beach persona"

"Palm Beachers and other locals say they have long recognized the two Donald Trump personas that presidential campaign watchers expect more of the country to soon get to meet." "Two Donald Trump personas emerge in Palm Beach."

"What's hot, crazy or shady about politics in the Sunshine State"

Marc Caputo: "SPECIAL SATURDAY EDITION -- John Miller for veep? — The Sunshine State of play — B’DAY: Howard Wolfson, Tom Donilon." "Florida Playbook."

That Killing Thing

The Tampa Bay Times editors: "Florida Supreme Court should change death sentences to life in prison."

"Big Bucks in April"

"Florida Senate hopefuls were busy raising big bucks for their campaigns during the month of April. Sunshine State News took a look at what the candidates in some of the state’s most hotly-contested Senate seats raised last month." "Florida Senate Contenders Raise Big Bucks in April."

GOP Latino leader steps in it

"Rosario Marin, a GOP Latino leader who was the 41st U.S. treasurer, unloaded on Donald Trump Friday by repeatedly telling an Orlando TV station that her fellow Republican is a 'little orange man' she and other Hispanics can’t vote for." "GOP Latino leader blasts Trump as ‘little orange man’."

The lucky sperm club: "Son of Miami lobbyist gets break"

"Son of Miami lobbyist gets break, is sentenced to only 30 months in prison for Molly dealing."

"A remarkable rise"

"Patrick Murphy burst from obscurity in 2012 by winning a bitter showdown with tea party Rep. Allen West. Now 33, the South Florida resident is strongly positioned to jump to the Senate, a remarkable rise that has national Democrats optimistic of regaining a majority."

Behind him stands one major asset. His father.

Thomas P. Murphy Jr. has built homes for Oprah Winfrey and Dan Marino, dozens of hotels and resorts, and he has constructed a path for his son in the most fundamental way: money.

The elder Murphy has given more than $1 million to super PACs supporting his son's campaigns and used donations to help create allies in Florida and Washington. His Coastal Construction Group has been the source for more than $180,000 given directly to the candidate's House and Senate campaigns.

"But the family advantage has provoked criticism from Democrats and Republicans who cast him as a rich kid and a hypocrite because he laments the influence of money in politics while benefiting from his father's largess."
A Republican, Tom Murphy has long been politically active and has given money to Charlie Crist, Alex Sink, George W. Bush and Mitt Romney. (Patrick Murphy also donated to Romney and was a registered Republican until shortly before launching his first campaign.) . . .

Democratic rival Alan Grayson, an outspoken liberal congressman from Orlando, has mocked Murphy for relying on "Daddy's PAC." Grayson also points out that Murphy is a stockholder in Coastal Construction. Just after he won the 2012 election, his father gave him stock worth up to $5 million.

"The financial muscle behind Patrick Murphy's Senate bid: his father."

Never mind the primary

"For the second time this spring, Vice President Joe Biden is campaigning for Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Patrick Murphy in Florida. But this time, it’ll be on the turf of Murphy’s Democratic opponent — in Orlando." "VP Joe Biden to campaign in Florida for candidate in enemy territory."

". . . But are there any left?"

"More than three decades after it was first captured in South Florida, a tiny wasp has been identified as a new species, but are there any left?" "New Keys wasp found, but is it already too late?"

"New revelations about major Murphy donor"

Nancy Smith: "As Vice President Joe Biden, who authored the Violence Against Women Act, promotes Patrick Murphy at a private fundraiser Thursday morning, troubling new revelations about a major Murphy donor convicted of domestic assault are making headlines. In a story this same morning under the headline, "GOP Wants Senate Dem Candidate to Donate $100K," the Hill reports:"

A leading Florida Democratic Senate candidate has donated more than $16,000 in campaign cash to domestic violence groups after receiving contributions from a longtime friend who pleaded guilty to assaulting his wife."
"But that's not all of the money Al-Rashid spent to get Patrick Murphy elected -- he also gave $100,000 to a pro-Murphy Super PAC in 2012 that ran an ad depicting cartoon violence against women:"
"[Senate Leadership Fund spokesman Ian] Prior notes that American Sunrise, the super-PAC Al-Rashid funded, ran a controversial ad that showed a cartoon version of Murphy’s then-opponent, Allen West, wearing boxing gloves and repeatedly punching women in the face to illustrate how he was hurting them with his votes on healthcare and other policies."

The report also reveals that Murphy took seven months to return Al-Rashid's last maxed-out donation, which was received after Murphy knew about his criminal acts. - See more at:

"Now Patrick Murphy Under Fire For Domestic Violence-Linked Campaign Cash."

And we don't want you to be our Senator

"Rubio: I do not want to be Trump's vice president."