Blogs from around the state

Naked Politics Flores to lead Miami-Dade Legislative Delegation

The Miami-Dade Legislative Delegation has a new leader.

Sen. Anitere Flores, a Miami Republican, was voted chairwoman Tuesday.

"My goal is for us to speak with as unified a voice as possible," she said.

Naked Politics Miami Commissioner Hardemon says Ferguson grand jury "sabotaged"

@NewsbySmiley

Miami Commissioner and former public defender Keon Hardemon took to Twitter Tuesday morning to blast the tactics of a St. Louis County prosecutor before a grand jury that declined to indict the white police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager Aug. 9 in Ferguson, Mo.

Naked Politics Gov. Scott signs death warrant for 21st execution

Gov. Rick Scott on Monday signed the death warrant for Johnny Shane Kormondy, who killed a Pensacola banker and repeatedly raped his wife as the couple returned home from her 20th high school reunion in 1993. Kormondy is set to die on Jan. 15, 2015.

Naked Politics Miami-Dade County commission elects first Haitian-American chairman

@PatriciaMazzei

Jean Monestime, who left Haiti alone at 17 to move to the United States and went from washing floors at a doughnut shop to running his own real-estate business, was elected Monday as the first Haitian-American chairman of the Miami-Dade County commission.

Naked Politics Crews confirms longstanding rumors and steps down as prisons chief

@Jknipebrown

Michael Crews, the embattled secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections, resigned Monday following months of scrutiny involving abusive corrections officers, suspicious inmate deaths and a poor record of inmate healthcare delivered by private contractors.

Naked Politics Legislators launch plan to rewrite enviro laws to deal with Amendment 1

Florida environmentalists say they were forced to go to voters to get permanent funding for land and water protection because legislators neglected the need for too many years. But now — even though Amendment 1 passed with 75 percent of the vote — the Legislature will get the last word.

Naked Politics Gov. Scott's prisons chief, Mike Crews, resigns

Gov. Rick Scott's corrections chief, Mike Crews, told his staff Monday that he's resigning. The News Service of Florida first reported Crews' decision to quit at a time when his agency has been in turmoil as a result of widespread reports of abuse by prison guards, charges of retaliation against whistleblowers and a chronic multi-million dollar deficit.

Naked Politics FEC asks Carlos Curbelo's campaign to explain finance report errors

@PatriciaMazzei

Carlos Curbelo was elected to U.S. Congress earlier this month, but his campaign work is not over.

The Federal Election Commission has asked the Miami Republican to respond to a series of questions for omitting or mislabeling more than $93,000 in campaign contributions, which Curbelo has blamed on a computer software problem.

Naked Politics Broward lobbyist Bill Rubin hires former Scott aide

Tallahassee lobbyist Bill Rubin, an early supporter of Gov. Rick Scott four years ago, has hired former top Scott policy advisor Chris Finkbeiner to help expand the firm's operations. Rubin also announced Monday that his long-time associate, consultant Heather Turnbull, has been promoted to executive vice president and partner in the firm. 

Naked Politics Daniella Levine Cava taps commission veterans for two top posts

@doug_hanks

Miami-Dade's newest commissioner has staffed up her District 8 office.

Naked Politics Big Miami-Dade donor Wayne Rosen wants another shot at county money

@doug_hanks

Wayne Rosen gave more money to Miami-Dade commissioners than almost anybody did, but the generosity failed to win him the vote he wanted three weeks ago. Now he's trying to reverse that unfavorable decision regarding a $5 million grant request for his Palmetto Bay charter-school complex. 

Naked Politics Obama sets immigration 'trap,' GOP get snared, irked

@MarcACaput

Scott Walker berated the reporters for “obsessing” about immigration.

“You have fallen into the trap the president of the United States has done,” the Wisconsin governor snapped at the Republican Governors Association’s conclave in Boca Raton last week.

Naked Politics GOP consultants' 'almost paranoid' mission to circumvent Fair Districts

@MarcACaputo @kmcgrory

The Republican consultants had to be hush-hush — “almost paranoid” in the words of one — because of their high-stakes mission: Get go-betweens to help circumvent a Florida Constitutional ban on gerrymandering.

Naked Politics Groups ask Florida Supreme Court to impose a "meaningful remedy" to redistricting issues

The coalition challenging the Florida Legislature's 2012 redistricting plan has filed its initial appeal to the state Supreme Court.

The coalition, made up of individuals and voters rights groups, has been battling to have the maps thrown out, saying they violate Florida's constitutional ban on partisan gerrymandering.

Naked Politics New documents, emails show GOP consultants steered Republican lawmakers in redistricting process

Republican consultants worked side-by-side with Republican lawmakers in guiding them on drawing new Florida congressional districts that intentionally favored incumbents in violation of the Fair District amendments to the state constitution, according to documents and emails contained in a long-running redistricting lawsuit.

Naked Politics U.S. Supreme Court denies stay in Bainter case

The U.S. Supreme Court won't keep secret documents used in Florida's redistricting case out of the public eye.

Naked Politics FSU trustees praise Thrasher's response to shooting

In the same room where he was jeered and heckled by Florida State students as a candidate for university president, John Thrasher drew widespread praise Friday for being a reassuring presence in the aftermath of Thursday's shooting at the campus library.

OS Political Pulse Hukill bill would cut state corporate-income tax

In an issue that has been a priority for Gov.

OS Political Pulse Congressional reacts to President Obama's immigration reform announcement

Not surprisingly, U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D, supports President Obama's immigration reform actions, while U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R, opposes.

Naked Politics Florida Supreme Court grants 10-day stay for secret redistricting docs

The clock is running out on political consultant Pat Bainter.

The Florida Supreme Court has ordered the release of emails and trial transcripts used in the recent redistricting case -- documents Bainter considers private and has been battling to keep out of the public eye. 

Naked Politics Is 50 the new zero in Orange County schools? Jeb Bush's claim faces PolitiFact's Truth-O-Meter

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said in a speech that we shouldn’t worry so much about students’ self-esteem when it comes to setting grades.

And he wagged his finger at Orange County, Florida.

Naked Politics Obama's False claim about his position on executive order for immigration

resident Barack Obama is on the verge of announcing significant executive actions that could affect at least a portion of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants residing in the United States.

As is often the case these days, rumors and pieces of the plan have floated through the media for a couple weeks now, and Obama appears ready to announce the full details Thursday night in an address to the nation.

Naked Politics Rep. Gaetz recalls Myron May, 'caring' classmate

State Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, knew Myron May, the man identified by police as the gunman in the FSU shootings, from their days working together in student government at Florida State.

May was a member of the Student Senate and Gaetz was president of the Insight political party on campus. The Insight party was focused on community outreach programs, and May got involved in the party’s community service committee.

Naked Politics Another South Florida government will have to hold 2015 budget do-over vote

@PatriciaMazzei

Make that two local governments that will have to adopt their 2015 budgets and property-tax rates again — two months after the new fiscal year began — after bungling public notices in September.

Naked Politics Police say FSU gunman Myron May was 'struggling psychologically'

Myron May, the 31-year-old Florida State University graduate who died in a hail of police fire early Friday, was "struggling psychologically" and "in a state of crisis," Tallahassee police said Thursday.

Naked Politics Fact-checking immigration, including claims by Marco Rubio and Debbie Wasserman Schultz

President Barack Obama will speak to the nation about immigration on Thursday night, unveiling a plan to prevent deportations for broad swathes of people living in the United States illegally.

Naked Politics John Thrasher's Mostly False claim about Koch donations

Long before John Thrasher became president of Florida State University on Nov. 10, students were expressing opposition to his appointment, many of them charging that Thrasher had ties to "special interests."

As the Republican former state senator begins his presidency, we decided to look back at a comment Thrasher made during a forum with FSU students and faculty on Sept. 15.

OS Political Pulse League to high court: Don't block release of redistricting records

Voting-rights groups Thursday urged the Florida Supreme Court to reject a Republican political consultant's motion to at least temporarily block the release of redistricting records.

Naked Politics AP: FSU gunman was lawyer, FSU graduate

From the Associated Press: 

The gunman who shot three people at Florida State University's library early Thursday before being killed by police was a lawyer who graduated from the school, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press.

Naked Politics Miami Rep. Diaz-Balart named chairman of House appropriations subcommittee

@CAdamsMcClatchy

U.S. Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, a Republican from Miami, was named chairman of one of the subcommittees in the powerful House Appropriations Committee, which helps dictate federal spending.