Political Bits and Pieces

By: Kevin Derby | Posted: June 14, 2014 3:55 AM
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After David Brat upset U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., in Tuesday’s primary, leaders from across the Sunshine State offered their take on what the major upset meant.

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., insisted the “radicals won” and Cantor’s defeat would doom immigration reform efforts in the U.S House. Nelson compared it to the close primary contest U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., was expecting later this month and longtime former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar’s, R-Ind., defeat in the Republican primaries back in 2012. ...

But another Florida Democrat insisted there were positive lessons from Cantor’s downfall. Former heavyweight boxing contender Jameel McCline, who is challenging U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., in the Democratic primaries, weighed in on Friday on the results from Virginia, maintaining the primary shows that congressmen who don’t pay attention to their districts can lose. ... From her perch as chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., also offered her thoughts on Brat’s win. “Tonight’s result in Virginia settles the debate once and for all," Wasserman Schultz said on Tuesday night. "The tea party has taken control of the Republican Party. Period.” ...

Florida Republicans are also trying to read the tea leaves after Cantor’s defeat. Businessman Brian Lara, running in a crowded Republican primary to see who will challenge U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, D-Fla., said Brat’s win proved Americans were fed up with immigration reform. Lara called out Murphy on the issue, hitting the Democrat for his support of it. ... Attorney Jake Rush, trying to knock off U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho, R-Fla., in the Republican primary, insisted Cantor’s loss bodes ill for his opponent. Rush accused Yoho on Wednesday of backing open borders in Washington while trying to appear to be a conservative in the district. The Rush campaign also hit Yoho for backing Cantor for speaker over U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio. ... With U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., a possible Republican presidential candidate in 2016, saying this week that he is open to immigration reform, a prominent conservative from Florida cheered the news. Ed Moore, the president of the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida (ICUF) and a leader of the Florida Center Right Coalition, praised Paul on Thursday and renewed his call for immigration reform. ...

Qualifying for state office begins on Monday which means an increased number of legislative filings. After Miami-Dade Democrats filed to run against House Republicans earlier this month, the GOP looked to challenge Democrat incumbents this week. Businesswoman Laura Rivero Levey filed on Thursday to run against Rep. David Richardson, D-Miami Beach, as a Republican. Levey ran for mayor of Miami Beach back in 2011 but came up short. ... Also on Thursday, Republican Carmen Rosa Sotomayor launched her bid against Rep. Kionne McGhee, D-Miami. ... A little bit north in Broward County, Rep. Hazel Rogers, D-Lauderhill, drew her first opponent for the election: Dolettea McDonald launched a write-in campaign against Rogers last week. ...

This week, Republican activist Kathryn Townsend entered the Republican primary to challenge Rep. Jason Brodeur, R-Sanford. Whoever wins the Republican primary will face Libertarian Franklin Perez in November. ... Former Rep. Fred Costello has an opponent blocking his path to returning to the Florida House: Noel Cheryl Bickford filed to run for the seat currently held by Rep. Dave Hood, R-Ormond Beach. Hood is seeking judicial office after a term in the House. ... Speaking of Costello, he won the endorsement of the Florida Medical Association this week. ... Over in Tampa Bay, Rep. Darryl Rouson, D-St. Petersburg, drew a second opponent this week: Philip Garrett filed on Thursday to run against Rouson with no party affiliation. Sharon Russ is already challenging Rouson as a Republican.

Reach Kevin Derby at kderby@sunshinestatenews.com. 

Comments (4)

12:17PM JUN 22ND 2014
Eric Cantor lost, not because there was a tea party challenger or because media personalities sided with Brat, but rather because Eric Cantor's arrogance including turning his back on his Richmond VA area district constituents. Cantor was focused on so-called national issues and funding, and had little or no time to pay attention to his constituents.

Know too that Brat had zero tea party backing; he did not receive a single cent of campaign contributions from the so-called tea party crowd. Moreover, no one who associates with the tea party came to the district and campaigned on his behalf.

The message here is a simple one - ignore your constituency and you're gone; people are fed up.
11:01PM JUN 14TH 2014
You forgot Thrasher has picked up a Republican Challenger.
9:53PM JUN 14TH 2014
Mr. Brat's win was brought about by "talk radio show personalities". It does NOT mean that "Americans have turned against immigration reform". It means that in America, a nation founded on immigrants, in Virginia, a State overflowing with people who describe themselves as "Christians", some people were persuaded to make a bad choice. Personally, stuff like this just makes me more determined to erase "the border" and join the U.S. and Mexico into one Nation. That should settle all this whining about "illegal immigrants".
7:53AM JUN 14TH 2014
Debbie Wasserman Schultz seems to think that the Tea Party has taken over the Republican Party and that is because she is so brainwashed that she cannot formulate a coherent thought.

Debbie in the typical liberal mode has to resort to labels, name calling, and innuendo. There is no "Tea Party" just a name to identify hard working American citizens that are fed up with the direction the country is going, and are standing up against the Tyranny. Of course by innuendo she infers that those she labels as Tea Party are radicals. She knows that if she made war with "Hard-working American Citizens she would doom the "Ruling Class" of both parties. The hard working Americans are restoring the Republican Party. Who is restoring the Democrat Party? Islam? Gays? Illegal aliens? Parasites?

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