Monday, July 04, 2016

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

"Rubio's word is as worthless as a wet firecracker"

Chris Ingram: "Despite claims he would not run for re-election to the U.S. Senate, Marco Rubio is now running for re-election. This should come as no surprise."

Last year, the field of Florida GOP "A-listers" (such as Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan of Sarasota, and former Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford) who normally would have jumped at the chance to run for an open U.S. Senate seat all said "no thanks.'' Even perennial losing candidate Bill McCollum, the former state attorney general and member of Congress, took a pass.
Because they knew that Rubio's word is as worthless as a wet firecracker. They won't publicly say that for fear of offending someone they might need something from later. But people who know Rubio privately acknowledge he cannot be trusted.
"Republicans don't trust Marco Rubio."

Gary Stein: "Marco's doing it for America? Please."

Fight over public records

"911: The Florida fight over which records are public." See also "From DCF to Pam Bondi, Nothing But Contempt for Florida’s Sunshine Law."

FlaDem registration advantage "slowly withering away"

Steve Bousquet: "In the must-win state of Florida, Democrats are seeing their numerical advantage in voters slowly wither away — a trend that could make a third straight presidential election victory in 2016 more challenging."

Florida is seeing a surge of enthusiasm about the upcoming election, and that, too, is helping Republicans more than Democrats, in part because of Trump.

In the six months ending May 31, 311,000 voters joined the rolls or changed their party.

That total included 184,000 Republicans and 117,000 Democrats. At the same time, hundreds of thousands of voters who were NPAs or Democrats switched to the Republican Party so they could vote in the closed GOP presidential preference primary in March.

The state's fluid demographics to a more racially and ethnically diverse population should favor Democrats, especially in the urban centers of Tampa Bay, Orlando and South Florida.

But those voters — young, Hispanic, African-American and new to Florida — are also more likely to register with no party affiliation.

"A lighter shade of blue: Florida Democrats' share of voter base continues to slide."

"Inaction and sabotage in Tallahassee"

The Miami Herald editors: "Algae blooms on the Treasure Coast are a sign of pollutants — and inaction and sabotage in Tallahassee. Gov. Scott and the Legislature have reversed measures that could help avert such environmental disasters." "Tally fails to rally to protect our water."

"Opponents question his Grayson Fund investment"

"Bob Poe, a candidate for Florida's 10th congressional district in Orlando, was an investor in U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson's controversial hedge fund, which opponents say contradicts his pitch that he is a progressive political outsider." "Poe opponents question his Grayson Fund investment."

Will Florida's Hispanic growth determine the election?

"As Florida’s Hispanic population has grown 18 percent in five years, the state has become more diverse. There has also been a surge in the number of people age 65 and older." "Hispanic growth in Florida: Will it determine the election?"

"Nelson stretches truth"

"Bill Nelson exaggerated when he said the House Zika bill limits birth control access in Puerto Rico." "Sen. Bill Nelson stretches truth about Zika bill and birth control."

The entrepreneurial spirit

"After Hillsborough nonprofit loses millions in state funding, former executive keeps getting paid."