The Adam Putnam campaign released a by-the-numbers snapshot of the 100 days since he formally kicked off his campaign for governor in Bartow.
“Hard-working folks ... have been able to achieve their American Dream right here in Florida,” said Putnam. “I want every single Floridian to be able to tell a similar story. I want people around the country to know this is where it happens. It’s why we have more work to do. It’s why we’ve got to keep fighting to put Florida first and make our state the launch pad for the American Dream. And it’s why I am running for Governor of the great state of Florida.”...
State Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando, rocked the Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus dinner at Tallahassee's Hotel Duval Satursday night with his unabashedly liberal and passionate take on the myriad issues he said are key to LGBTQ Floridians. Among them: Access to guns, Reproductive rights, home rule, heathcare. Here are a few nuggets
Republican legislators don't like talking about the Pulse massacre:...
Winner of the week
Tom Scarritt. The Tampa lawyer University of the South grad thought his community would step up to pay to move a divisive monument from the shadow of the courthouse, and he was was right.
Loser of the week
State Sen. George Gainer. Filing a bill to ensure drivers are immune to civil liability if they unintentionally kill or maim a protester blocking a public road seemed like an excellent idea to the Panama City Republican and Transportation Committee chairman this year. But after a protester was run over and killed in Virginia -- and Gainer took a thrashing on social media -- his interest in re-filing the bill has subsided....
08/19/17 State Roundup
After last weekend's violence in Charlottesville, Va., Winter Park businessman and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Chris King posted a message on Facebook calling for all Confederate monuments in Florida to be removed from federal lands, saying they celebrate an anti-American ideology.
We surveyed the other announced candidates for governor in 2018 and the candidates talking about running on the topic. Here are their responses:...
Occasionally in today's hyper-rehearsed and contrived world of political campaigns one witnesses moments that are so honest and real, we can't help but understand we're not just listening to another politician give his or her stump speech; We're listening to a human being who understands personal pain at least as well as we do.
Two such choke-up moments occurred Saturday when a few dozen members of the Florida LGBTA Democratic Caucus heard from a couple of underdog candidates for the 2018 Democratic gubernatorial nomination....
CNN, following up on Miami Herald reporting, is shining a spotlght on Florida's decision to shift thousands of seriously ill Florida children from one well-regarded Medicaid program to others that don't specialize in very sick kids. "This was a way for the politicians to repay the entities that had contributed to their political campaigns and their political success, and it's the children who suffered," said Dr. Louis St. Petery, former executive vice president of the Florida chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics....
08/18/17 State Roundup
It should be a golden opportunity for Democrats: The nonstop controversy surrounding President Donald Trump and the failure of Republicans on Capitol Hill to get much done.
But swelling energy on the streets masks deep problems confronting Democrats, who stumbled out of the 2016 election with a muddled message and crushed spirits. The party lacks a clear leader and is engaged in internal fighting reminiscent of the tea party takeover of the GOP....
Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum is speaking out after a new photo has surfaced showing him in New York City with an alleged FBI agent.
“It looks like people hanging out. I really am deeply offended by folks ascribing other meaning to it,” said Gillum.
The photo shows a man known as “Mike Miller”- whom sources have said was an undercover FBI agent- developer Adam Corey, and Gillum. Corey was named in two Grand Jury subpoenas issued in June which requested communication between a list of local movers and shakers and the City of Tallahassee and the Community Redevelopment Agency.......
...."I may not respect the occupant of the office, but I respect the office," (Philip) Levine said. "Right now he's the pilot, and I'm on the plane like everybody else. I don't wish the pilot failure. I want a smooth and safe landing."
A lot of campaign professionals would dismiss this feel-good talk as a non-starter among rabidly partisan primary voters. They may be right. But the way the other Democratic candidates are struggling to raise money so far, nobody should underestimate the little-known mayor....
If he decides to run, Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine will be the most enigmatic and unpredictable candidate for Florida governor in 2018.
Many political elites doubt the self-described "radical centrist" entrepreneur will jump into a Democratic primary that already includes Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham and Winter Park businessman Chris King.
But the fact is Levine, 55, is far more likely to run than not, and he could quickly emerge as the Democratic front-runner. He intends to make his announcement in October....
A longtime political consultant for Republican gubernatorial candidate Adam Putnam is behind a website calling one of his rivals in the race, state Sen. Jack Latvala, a “liberal.”
The committee responsible for the “Liberal Jack Latvala” site is funded by the political committee United Conservatives for Florida. That committee’s chairman is 20-year-old Skylar Lee Frey, who is registered to vote at a Sarasota home owned by Mac Stevenson....
John Morgan, the publicity-loving personal injury lawyer/entrepreneur who spearheaded the successful medical marijuana initiative, soon plans to start collecting signatures for a 2020 ballot initiative raising Florida minimum wage. He plans to "spend millions of my own money" on the effort, but he also intends to pressure every ambitious politician in Florida to help out on the effort.
"I'm going to have a scorecard for Florida's politicians," Morgan told The Buzz. "I plan to list every elected official that's running for office and holding office, and I'm going to ask them to go to their donors and donate to this cause. If you really believe in this then do something."...
Surrounded by several hundred friends and supporters at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Republican State Sen. Jack Latvala noted that the only other officially announced Republican for governor (Adam Putnam) kicked off his campaign with a high school marching band. Then Latvala introduced Nicholas the Dolphin, who prompty swam over to Latvala's tank-side podium and did multiple flips in the air....
The mayor of Eatonville, a town near Orlando that was incorporated in 1887 as one of America's first all-black cities, today endorsed Winter Park businessman Chris King for governor. Mayor Eddie Cole said he has seen King's character first hand:
"For some folks, Chris may be a new face, but I’ve known and felt the impact of his work in Central Florida for quite some time. From his work in affordable housing to his philanthropies in public schools, I know Chris to be a man of character, hard work, and inclusion," Mayor Cole said. "Florida is failing to meet the basic needs of its citizens – most acutely where jobs, housing, and health care are concerned. As the mayor of Eatonville, I’ve seen how far our community has come and how far we have to go. I’ve also seen how for too long communities of color have been forgotten, while elected officials pay lip service to both the unique and common challenges we face. I know with Chris we’ll have more than just a seat at the table: a real partner in bringing about economic change here in Eatonville and across the state.”...
Here's what Florida's gubernatorial contenders say about removing Confederate monuments from public lands08/16/17 Blog
Chris King, a Winter Park businessman and Democratic candidate for governor, yesterday called for the removal of all Confederate monuments from public lands in Florida in the aftermath of the violence in Charlottesville. We checked in the others running or talking about running for governor on the subject:
Gwen Graham: "Our state's role in the Civil War and the deplorable promotion of slavery still cause deep pain today. We all have a responsibility to combat racism and hate wherever it exists. We all must educate our children about this painful history and teach them to love one another. Now, more than ever, it is imperative we promote and celebrate the values and aspirations that unify us as Floridians and Americans. I stand with the Florida cities and towns that have relocated monuments from public spaces and strongly support efforts to place all these statutes where they belong: in cemeteries, museums, and textbooks." ...