Blogs from around the state

Naked Politics Video: RPOF Chair Leslie Dougher on why she should be re-elected

In our final video installment on the race for chairman of the Florida Republican Party, Leslie Dougher explains why she should be re-elected. She certainly has the bonafides.

PolitiJax Emails show mayor taps banking executive to replace Hightower on JEA board

It looks like Mayor Alvin Brown will tap Community First Credit Union President and CEO John Hirabayashi to replace Mike Hightower on the JEA board of directors.

Hightower, the former top lobbyist for Florida Blue and a well-known Jacksonville Republican, abruptly resigned from the board earlier this month to become a senior policy analyst at global lawfirm Holland & Knight. 

Naked Politics Controversial Miami-Dade prosecutor steps down


Former public corruption prosecutor Richard Scruggs has left the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office after 11 years on the job.

Scruggs will only say it was time to move on. But it’s not a retirement. He plans on splitting time between Miami and somewhere a lot colder.

“I’m exploring whether to get back and do law enforcement here or in Alaska,” said Scruggs, 63, whose last day was Friday.

Florida Politics `Cromnibus' includes money for Everglades, Hoover Dike

Eight of ten Florida Democrats in the U.S.

Naked Politics Scott gives state workers an extra day off during holidays


State workers will have an additional holiday from work on Dec. 26th,  Gov. Rick Scott announced in a letter to the Florida Department of Management Services Secretary on Friday, directing Craig Nichols to close all state buildings on that day, in addition to Dec. 25th.

The extra day off is "in recognition of the hard work of our state employees," Scott wrote in the letter.

Post on Politics Ethics panel clears Hastings of sexual harassment; calls some conduct ‘less than professional’

Report says frequent hugs by Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, “could be misunderstood.”

Post on Politics U.S. Sugar sweetens the pot for Scott’s second inaugural

As Election Night wound down at Scott’s victory party in Bonita Springs

Clewiston-based U.S. Sugar Corp. is among the biggest early contributors to Gov. Rick Scott’s second inauguration festivities planned for Jan. 6 at the Florida Capitol, the state Republican Party reported Friday.

OS Political Pulse CF delegation mostly doesn't like spending bill

If the appropriations bill approved by Congress Thursday night-- the so-called Cromnibus -- had to rely just on Central Florida lawmakers it would have gone down in flames, with only U.S. Rep. John Mica voting yes.

Post on Politics ‘CRomnibus’ vote produces strange bedfellows in Florida delegation

These three Palm Beach County Democrats — Reps. Alcee Hastings, Patrick Murphy and Ted Deutch — were all smiles at an August event, but differed on a $1.1 trillion spending bill Thursday night.

Naked Politics Miami-Dade mayor's deputy takes on additional role as head of public works department


Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez has filled a vacancy atop the county's public works department -- by tapping one of his deputies to permanently take on the role.

Naked Politics Feds: Florida scholarship program does not violate anti-discrimination laws

Florida did not violate anti-discrimination laws by using standardized test scores to award Bright Futures scholarships, the U.S. Department of Education has found.

Florida Politics Bill passed to spare small boaters from water discharge regs

 Congress this week cleared legislation that exempts small boats from federal environmental regulations for water discharges, a significant development for Florida’s many boaters.

OS Political Pulse Bill passed to spare small boaters from water discharge regs

 Congress this week cleared legislation that exempts small boats from federal environmental regulations for water discharges, a significant development for Florida’s many boaters.

Florida Politics Deutch, Hastings decry `big money in politics'

 South Florida Congressmen Ted Deutch and Alcee Hastings are trying to remove provisions from a sweeping spending bill that they say would give the wealthy undue influence on political campaigns.

Naked Politics Yes, Rick Scott, jobs lure folks to Florida but so does the weather

Does Florida essentially have a big ol “Help Wanted” sign?

Coming off fresh from his “jobs jamboree” pit stops around the state to celebrate his re-election, Gov. Rick Scott talked up the Sunshine State’s reputation for jobs during a gaggle with reporters after the Dec. 9 Cabinet meeting.

Naked Politics Rep. Alcee Hastings escapes sex-harassment ethics charge, gets rapped for bad behavior

via @learyreports at Tampa Bay Times Buzz blog:

The House Ethics Committee today said it was clearing Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, in a sexual harassment case, brought by a female employee of the United States Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, the
Helsinki Commission.

But the commission admonished Hastings anyway.

Naked Politics Marco Rubio's claim about the CIA torture report

In a preemptive strike to a Senate committee report detailing past examples of alleged torture by the CIA, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio called the release of the document "reckless and irresponsible." Rubio raised concerns that the release could endanger lives of Americans overseas, incite violence and create problems for our allies.

Naked Politics Ice cream-truck pedophile could go free thanks to bad FL law, Supreme Court case


Hey, pedophiles and extortionists, you have an unwitting friend in the Florida Legislature.

For years, Florida has generally prohibited people from secretly recording others – including criminals -- without their knowledge. There are some exceptions.

But being a little girl who's raped by your mom’s boyfriend?

Post on Politics Scott continues to fill agency vacancies, naming new DEP boss

Gov. Rick Scott continued Thursday to complete his lineup of agency heads for the start of his second term next month, naming Jonathan Steverson as secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection.

Naked Politics Gov. Scott appoints water manager as new DEP chief

Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday named Jon Steverson, executive director of the Northwest Florida Water Management District, to be the new secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). It's Scott's second new agency hire in two days, following Wednesday's appointment of Julie Jones to head the state prison system.

OS Political Pulse Senate bill would allow guns on campus, too

Mirroring a bill filed earlier in the week in the House, a Northwest Florida senator Thursday proposed a measure that would allow people to carry concealed weapons on the campuses of state colleges and universities.

Naked Politics Mayor's former chief of staff takes job with Miami-Dade schools chief


Months after quitting as Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez's chief of staff, Lisa Martinez has taken a job as a senior staffer with Miami-Dade schools chief Alberto Carvalho.

Naked Politics BLOOMBERG: Jeb Bush Has a Mitt Romney Problem posts this analysis of Jeb Bush's private equity firms and how it could make it harder to run for president.

"A private-equity-guy presidential candidate with lots of deals for the press to untangle—it sounds at least 47 percent familiar," writes Bloomberg.

Post on Politics State efforts help push high school smoking to record low, study finds

High school smoking in Florida is at a record low, study finds

Florida gets generally good marks in a national report on state anti-smoking efforts released Thursday by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and health organizations.

Post on Politics Existence of TaxWatch report surprises at least one Palm Beach County commissioner

Palm Beach County Commissioner Steven Abrams politely scolded fellow commissioner Paulette Burdick on Wednesday for not circulating an independent watchdog report about a Solid Waste Authority proposal.

Post on Politics Scott in Belle Glade this morning to highlight $3.8 million in road projects

Gov. Rick Scott during a visit to Palm Beach County.

Gov. Rick Scott will be at Belle Glade City Hall this morning to highlight $3.8 million in state transportation money for rural areas.


Naked Politics ICYM: More NYT scrutiny on Bondi

In case you missed it, the New York Times published another story this weekend on attorneys general and, once again, it touched on Florida’s own Pam Bondi.

Naked Politics Armstrong: All Florida hospitals are Ebola ready

Florida Surgeon General and Secretary of Health John Armstrong provided additional information Wednesday on the state's preparedness for a potential Ebola outbreak.

Post on Politics Americans can give a boatload more cash to politicians if end-of-year budget passes

Rep. Ted Deutch is among a group of Democrats balking at a provision that would allow an individual to contribute six times as much in political contributions as current law allows. That change was added  to an end-of-year, $1.1 trillion budget deal that is meant to prevent another federal government shutdown.

Details of the deal only became public Wednesday evening, leaving Congressional offices to decode it Thursday.

Naked Politics Saint Leo online poll: Jeb Bush blows away Marco Rubio and GOP pack, nearly leads Hillary Clinton in FL


Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush would handily carry his homestate in a crowded GOP primary and is the only Republican to marginally lead Democrat Hillary Clinton in a theoretical 2016 presidential contest, according to a new Saint Leo University Polling Institute survey.