Sunburn – The morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics – 5.4.18


Sunburn — The morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics.

By Peter Schorsch, Phil Ammann, Daniel McAuliffe, Jim Rosica, and Drew Wilson.

Star Wars Day is here, as fans worldwide will say in the now-famous pun: “May the Fourth be with you.”

To celebrate, Hill+Knowlton looked at the emotional impact of movie trailers for each film in the 40-year-old blockbuster series, starting with the 1977 original through the upcoming “Solo: A Star Wars Story.”

Spoiler alert: Solo came out best for bringing the feels.

— 250 Star Wars fans viewed the trailers for all nine previously released Star Wars movies — as well as Solo, set for a May 25 release — ranking each on its storytelling strengths (and weaknesses).

— Ratings were based on three key elements: Wonder, Wisdom and Delight. These attributes make up a “strategic storytelling index,” defined by social scientists as a benchmark of “emotional and intellectual magnetism” that points out what features of the trailer resonate most with audiences.

— The results were distilled to a 100-point scale of emotional resonance.

— The “Solo: A Star Wars Story” trailer ranked highest with an index of 81, scoring best on Wonder and the second highest on Wisdom. Solo was also one of the six films to have more than half of Star Wars fans agreeing strongly they were “delighted” by the trailer.

— Faring worst with fans was the trailer for “Attack of the Clones,” released in 2002. It scored only 63.

— The survey also found a generational divide exists between two Star Wars films: “Return of the Jedi” and “The Force Awakens.” Older generations (aged 36+) ranked 1983’s Jedi higher than did Millennials (a bit of nostalgia, perhaps).

— In contrast, Awakens, released in 2015, ranked higher with Millennials than with Baby Boomers.


— @abbydphillip: In a gaggle of reporters at the WH just now, Sarah Sanders refused to answer multiple questions about why she and the president made statements about the Daniels case that we now know to be untrue. Sanders insisted she couldn’t comment because of ongoing litigation.

— @MattZCooper: Thinking Trump might have been better off with LegalZoom.

— @SenBillNelson: Big News today! — FEMA has just agreed to extend its TSA housing assistance program for all displaced Puerto Rican families through June 30 to allow them to, at least, finish out the current school year.

— @MonicaLewinsky: blaming the intern is so 1990’s.

— @RichardCorcoran: I’ll have a big announcement to make next week — stay tuned!

— @TwitterSupport: We recently found a bug that stored passwords unmasked in an internal log. We fixed the bug and have no indication of a breach or misuse by anyone. As a precaution, consider changing your password on all services where you’ve used this password.


Mother’s Day — 9; Deadpool 2 release — 14; Solo: A Star Wars Story premier — 21; Memorial Day — 24; Time Warner/AT&T merger ruling — 39; Father’s Day — 44; Close of candidate qualifying for statewide office — 49; Deadline for filing claim bills — 89; ‘The Race for Governor’ Republican gubernatorial debates — 89; ‘The Race for Governor’ Democratic gubernatorial debates — 90; Start of the U.S. Open — 115; Primary Election Day — 116; College Football opening weekend — 118; ‘Before You Vote’ Florida U.S. Senate debate — 172; ‘Before You Vote’ Florida Governor debate — 173; General Election Day — 186; ‘Hamilton’ comes to the Straz Center — 286; 2019 Legislative Session starts — 305.


Florida marks 150th anniversary of disenfranchisement law – Second Chances Florida put out a press release Thursday: “Florida enshrined disenfranchisement in its constitution 150 years ago today. This law was put in place in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War. Today, Florida is one of only four states with a lifetime ban on voting and permanently excludes 1.4 million Floridians, who have served their time and paid their debts to society, from voting. Now is the time to retire this antiquated law by voting YES on Amendment 4 in November … To learn more about the Second Chances Campaign, please visit”


Poll: Patrick Murphy leads Democratic gubernatorial primary with GOP running mate David Jolly” via Marc Caputo of POLITICO Florida – Murphy would be tied for second if he jumped into Florida’s Democratic primary for governor, according to a new poll that shows he could nudge into first with one unorthodox move: Picking a Republican running mate. The survey, conducted by Murphy’s former pollster and paid for by an unnamed Murphy supporter, bucks the commonly held notion that centrism — including a Murphy unity ticket with former Republican Rep. David Jolly — has no place in a partisan Democratic primary in Florida. “There’s a lot of conventional wisdom that’s wrong,” said pollster Keith Frederick, whose firm surveyed 750 Florida Democrats from April 23-28. “What this poll shows is this idea — of a new approach to politics with a bipartisan team that works together to solve problems — has currency in the Democratic primary.” But this and other polls show the Democratic primary is wide open, and no one has a commanding lead. Frederick’s poll shows that more than 40 percent of Democrats were undecided in a five-candidate race that included Murphy. The high number of undecided voters, as seen in other polls, and a lackluster debate of the Democratic candidates last month left some of Murphy’s old supporters who backed his 2016 U.S. Senate campaign to charter the poll in the hopes of persuading him to run.

Adam Putnam has ‘another’ $2M month” via Danny McAuliffe of Florida Politics — Republican gubernatorial candidate Putnam‘s campaign announced late Thursday that it again crossed the $2-million threshold … The newest numbers mean Putnam has raised $28.88 million to date. Putnam’s April haul saw $566,701 go to his campaign account, along with more than $1.5 million added to his affiliated political committee … Contribution and expenditure details are not yet available; the campaign has until May 10 to file state fundraising reports. Current on-hand cash amounts also are not available, though Putnam’s PAC and personal account had about $19.26 million cash on hand at the beginning of April.

Key endorsement: The Florida Chamber of Commerce on Thursday endorsed Adam Putnam for governor. “Adam Putnam believes in Florida and the Florida Chamber believes in Adam Putnam,” Chamber CEO Mark Wilson said.

Ron DeSantis’ campaign dismisses VA talk” via the News Service of Florida — DeSantis’ campaign this week dismissed a Washington Post report that the Republican gubernatorial candidate was on a short list to become the next Veterans Affairs secretary. “As much as @adamputnam would like this to be true, @RonDesantisFL is going to be next Governor of Florida,” tweeted DeSantis campaign manager Brad Herold. “He will however continue to work with the next VA Secretary to make sure Florida veterans are given the care they deserve.” According to the Post, topping the list of potential nominees is Jeff Miller, who spent 16 years in Congress representing Northwest Florida.

Assignment editors — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Philip Levine will kick off a two-day campaign visit through the Florida Panhandle, stopping in Leon, Escambia, Okaloosa and Bay counties. Tour begins with a meet-and-greet at 5:30 p.m., 525 Boobin Brooke Lake, Tallahassee. Tour continues Saturday with a living room conversation with military veterans and families at 10:30 a.m., 3390 Bayou Blvd., Pensacola. At 12:30 p.m., Levine will be at Harbor Docks, 538 Harbor Blvd., Destin. The final stop is a 2:30 p.m. visit with the Bay County Women’s Democratic Club, 135 Harrison Ave., Panama City.

Former Congressman Ron Paul endorses Bob White for Governor — “I never back down from a liberty fight. I stood up to others when liberty’s cause was being challenged. And now it’s time to pass liberty’s fight to a new generation of leaders and fighters. Bob White is one of those fighters,” Paul said in his endorsement. “Bob has proved his resolve to fight for and defend the Constitutions of the United States and Florida. With anti-liberty forces fighting harder than ever in every corner of government, we need leaders unafraid to stand up for our freedom. I believe Bob is someone who will. I am very pleased to give him my full support and endorsement to lead as Florida’s next governor. I call on all like-minded patriots who love the Constitution to get behind Bob and help him win this important race.”

Darren Soto calls for election battle about ‘respect and dignity’” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics — The call appeared as a response to news that Soto now faces his predecessor Democratic former U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson in a primary battle for Florida’s 9th Congressional District. Grayson already has shown his fighting form, attacking Soto’s record and commitment to progressive causes. “People are sick of nasty politics and I plan to rise above it once again,” Soto said, without mentioning Grayson by name. “As First Lady Michelle Obama once famously said, ‘when they go low, we go high.’” And he pledged a positive campaign and called for a united Democratic Party.

Tom Lee announces he’s not running for Congress” via William March of the Tampa Bay Times — State Sen. Lee won’t enter the race for the congressional seat being vacated by Rep. Dennis Ross … Lee’s Twitter announcement, however, didn’t answer the question of whether he intends to run for re-election to his state Senate seat or pursue some other option: “After much thought & discussion with family, I’ve decided not to run for Congress this year. It would have been an honor to follow in the footsteps of my friend @RepDennisRoss, but right now I feel the need to be closer to home & my family.” Depending on Lee’s future plans, his decision could clear the air for Republicans concerning two state House seats, those of Reps. Shawn Harrison and Danny Burgess. Both had said they would likely run for Lee’s Senate seat if he vacated it.

Leading pro-life organization endorses Greg Steube in CD 17 — The Family Research Action PAC is endorsing Steube in his bid for Florida 17th Congressional District. FRC Action PAC Vice President Lt. Gen. (ret.) Jerry Boykin said: “During Greg Steube’s time in the Florida House and Senate, he has been a champion for faith, family, and freedom. He has been an especially strong defender of life, supporting several measures in the Florida House and Senate that expand protections for unborn children. Additionally, his support from other pro-life groups in Florida confirms his pro-life credentials.” Steube a faces state Rep. Julio Gonzalez of Venice in the Republican primary for the open seat of retiring Congressman Tom Rooney.

Assignment editors — Grassroots organization Floridians for a Fair Shake will join voters in Florida’s 18th Congressional District to rally against Republican U.S. Rep. Brian Mast on the anniversary of his vote to repeal health care. Rally begins 12:30 p.m. in front of Mast’s district office, 121 SW Port St. Lucie Boulevard, Port St. Lucie.

Miami Democrats do the Nancy Pelosi squirm as House minority leader visits South Florida” via David Smiley of the Miami Herald — The top Democrat in the U.S. House had just spent an hour gushing about Debbie Mucarsel-Powell‘s “courage,” highlighting her congressional campaign to knock off one of the most vulnerable Republicans in America and bashing Rep. Carlos Curbelo over his voting record on health care. But when it came time to reciprocate, Mucarsel-Powell wasn’t quite ready to fully endorse the return of Speaker Nancy Pelosi should Democrats take back the House this November. “If you look at Washington D.C., who’s leading this country, I think we need more bold women leading the way,” Mucarsel-Powell told reporters even as Pelosi urged her not to answer a reporter’s question about an endorsement. “I’m doing this event with leader Pelosi because she shares this community’s values and I’m voting for speaker for whomever shares the values of this community.” Mucarsel-Powell’s not-so-full-throated response — spoken with Pelosi standing next to her — highlights the conundrum Democrats face as the nation’s minority party pushes to take back Congress during the midterm elections.

Joe Negron endorses Gayle Harrell as his Senate replacement — “She understands and appreciates the issues important to our community, particularly protecting our environment and championing K-12 and higher education,” Senate President Negron said in a statement. Negron announced this week he would retire from the Republican-leaning Senate District 25 in November. Harrell’s current House District 83 in St. Lucie County makes up the largest portion of Negron’s district. “I am delighted to be endorsed by the president of the Senate,” Harrell said in a statement Friday. “He has left very ‘big shoes to fill’ and I will work hard to fill them. He has been an amazing advocate for the Treasure Coast, our values and our quality of life.”


It takes a few minutes to get through it, but this balanced deep dive into Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gwen Graham is worth the read.

Written by POLITICO Magazine’s Michael Grunwald, a veteran of Sunshine State journalism, the story gives readers an insight to the virtues of the former North Florida congresswoman and daughter of former Gov. and U.S. Sen. Bob Graham.

The themes of the piece? She’s the polar opposite of President Donald Trump and is overwhelmingly normal. And the latter isn’t just Grunwald’s take. Graham pollster John Anzelone said focus groups say Graham is “like your favorite aunt, or your college buddy.”

Here are some more highlights, but set aside some time to read the whole piece later:

A quote that will live in infamy: “In the first Democratic debate, [Andrew] Gillum and a long-shot candidate, entrepreneur Chris King, repeatedly targeted Graham as a mealy-mouthed moderate, but she turned their gang-tackling to her advantage. ‘It’s OK,’ she quipped. ‘Gwen and the men.’”

From Dem strategist Steve Schale: “It’s easy to be skeptical about second-generation political kids, but she isn’t a prodigy who was groomed for this from birth. She’s a real person who went off and led a real life.”

Foreshadow?: In Parkland, following moving words from Graham, Grunwald writes, “two elderly women asked me who was speaking, and I explained that it was Gwen Graham, a candidate for governor. ‘Huh. She’s great,’ one of the women said. ‘But I’m voting for the black guy.’”


Jimmy Patronis: ‘No confidence’ in state’s chief financial regulator” via Jim Rosica of Florida Politics — Chief Financial Officer Patronis is telling the state’s top financial regulator he “no longer ha(s) confidence” in Drew Breakspear‘s ability to lead the Office of Financial Regulation. Patronis, a Panama City Republican running for re-election this year, sent a letter to Breakspear on Thursday … Breakspear has served as Commissioner of the Florida Office of Financial Regulation since November 2012. The agency polices the banking, finance and securities industries. He answers to the state’s Financial Services Commission, made up of Patronis, Gov. Scott, Attorney General Pam Bondi and Agriculture Commissioner Putnam. Under state law, the Commission can fire Breakspear “by a majority vote consisting of at least three affirmative votes, with both the Governor and the Chief Financial Officer on the prevailing side.” Scott and Patronis are friends and political allies.

Lack of Medicaid expansion hurts Florida in national health care rankings” via Michael Moline of Florida Politics — Mississippi, Oklahoma and Louisiana are the only states that fared worse than Florida on a national health care survey … Florida ranked No. 48 overall among the 50 states and District of Columbia on The Commonwealth Fund’s 2018 Scorecard on State Health System Performance. Among categories, the state ranked No. 49 for access and affordability; prevention and treatment; avoidable hospital use and cost; and providing equal access to health care. The state improved in more areas than not. The number of uninsured adults and children declined. Fewer adults went without care because of cost. More home health care patients were up and walking. More mentally ill adults found treatment. Fewer breast cancer patients died. But many areas saw no improvement. Or are getting worse. For example, the hospital 30-day mortality rate. More adults smoked, were obese, lost six or more teeth or reported only fair or poor health. In other areas, the state held steady.

Death sentence upheld in 1988 murder, sexual battery” via the News Service of Florida — Attorneys for inmate Perry Alexander Taylor challenged his death sentence based on a 2016 U.S. Supreme Court decision and because of disputed evidence about whether Taylor had sexually battered victim Geraldine Birch. The 2016 U.S. Supreme Court decision found that Florida’s death-penalty system was unconstitutional because it gave too much authority to judges, instead of juries, in determining whether death sentences should be imposed. A Hillsborough County jury in Taylor’s case voted 8-4 to recommend a death sentence, which was imposed by a judge. But while the Florida Supreme Court has retroactively applied the unanimity requirement to cases going back to 2002, it has said that earlier cases — such as Taylor’s — are not required to have unanimous recommendations. Justices rejected arguments stemming from the unanimity issue and the evidence issue, which was related to testimony by a medical examiner. Perry, now 51, confessed to killing Birch but said it was not premeditated and that sexual contact was consensual, according to the Supreme Court ruling.

Police use saliva to arrest Casselberry man on voter-fraud charges” via Martin Comas of the Orlando Sentinel — State and local investigators said they used fingerprints and DNA from saliva found on five mail-in ballots to track down a Casselberry man and charge him with voter fraud. Bret Warren, 36, was arrested and booked into the Seminole County Jail on several other charges, including possession of oxycodone. In October 2016, days before the general election, several residents of the Spring Valley neighborhood in Altamonte Springs reported to the Seminole County Supervisor of Election’s Office that they had not received their absentee ballots. The Supervisor of Elections Office called law enforcement officials after discovering that the five residents’ ballots were apparently stolen and turned in with fake signatures and with votes cast. Investigators lifted DNA evidence from the portion of the envelopes that are sealed with saliva, according to a police report. Investigators also were able to match the fingerprints on the envelopes with Warren’s fingerprints in a federal registry, police said.

Judge lets Zachary Cruz go free but warns ‘they are watching you’” via Rafael Olmeda of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — Cruz, the brother of Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz, was allowed to go free from a Broward jail cell after he admitted to driving without a license in Palm Beach County. Broward prosecutors, in turn, admitted that there was not enough evidence to prove that Cruz, 18, violated the terms of his probation in a local trespassing case by getting a little too close to a school over the weekend. But Broward County Judge Melinda Brown warned: “They are watching you.” Attorneys for Cruz say law enforcement is watching him too closely, singling him out for harassment because of his infamous brother, who killed 17 people and injured 17 more at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on Feb. 14. Brown added one condition to Zachary Cruz’s probation — in the future, driving without a license will be a violation that officials can use to jail him for nearly two months.

Miami’s charismatic new mayor wants more power. But is that a good thing?” via Fabiola Santiago of the Miami Herald — It’s easy to like Francis Suarez and what he represents: A new generation is in charge of the city of Miami. It was time. “Miami, long known as a gateway city, is now a global city,” he declared at his inauguration in February. He repeated this at a meeting with the Miami Herald’s Editorial Board, where Suarez pushed hard to sell a major change in city government. He wants to be a strong mayor. He wants more power than the city’s executive-style system affords him now in allowing him to select the city manager. He has rolled up his sleeves and set out to work but feels shackled by having to funnel everything to be solved through the city manager’s office. A strong mayor would be accountable to residents, who can hold a recall for an ineffective one. Most of the major cities in the United States have one, Suarez argues. It’s Miami’s turn. If you’re thinking that he’s only been on the job three months and already wants more power, he tells you that he’s tried to do this twice when he was a commissioner, but fellow commissioners turned him down. He wants to take the issue to the voters.

Slammed by a storm and tormented by wildfire. How these Keys people got through it” via Gwen Filosa of the Miami Herald — For a straight week, the fire consumed the lives of the people who live on Big Pine, with many still trying to put their homes back together after Hurricane Irma. Just last September, their rural enclave about a half-hour from the Southernmost City, was whipped by Irma, along with Little Torch, Summerland, Cudjoe and Sugarloaf Keys. Across unincorporated Monroe County, including Big Pine, more than 700 homes, not including mobile homes, were damaged by the storm. Then came the fire. It burned from April 22-29. And it toyed with people still in recovery mode. “It was almost a flashback from the storm,” said DiAne Rullen, who lost her home and car to Hurricane Irma eight months ago … “Everybody helps everybody,” said Ellen Guilford. “People down here they don’t look at material things. People are just happy to be living.”


According to Scott Shalley, president of the Florida Retail Federation, the industry isn’t coming to a shuddering halt. Instead, it’s transforming and evolving rapidly — and that’s what makes it so exciting.

In a Q&A published by Sara DiNatale of the Tampa Bay Times, Shalley offers a detailed glimpse of the current landscape of the retail industry.

In short, Shalley, who just wrapped his first year heading the Federation, is optimistic. “For those retailers who are willing to listen to the consumer, and are willing to adapt to the needs of the consumer, the future is very bright,” he told the Times.

Perspective: “We’re in a very dynamic fast-paced industry. It’s gone through evolution after evolution … In 1888 Sears, came out with their first catalogue and that was probably, by some accounts, billed as the end of mom-and-pop stores as we know it. And, of course, that wasn’t the case.”

What the Federation is doing: Shalley said, “left alone, the retail industry will fare.” But FRF has “found great support within the Legislature and the governor that allows us to move forward.”

Looking ahead: Expect FRF to target the business rent tax. Per Shalley, “We commend the Legislature for the .1 percent reduction that was adopted, but we would really like to see them work aggressively toward an elimination of that tax.”


Nancy Pelosi: ‘I love Alan Grayson’ but he shouldn’t challenge Darren Soto” via Alex Leary of the Tampa Bay Times — “I love Alan Grayson. He was a very progressive member of Congress,” Pelosi said in an interview with the Tampa Bay Times editorial board. “I wish he would run in a different seat. I would love to have him back … But [Soto] is there now and is very important to us in terms of generationally and also in terms of issues that relate to Puerto Rico, which are a priority for us to address. I have supported Darren Soto. I’m sad that Alan chose to come back in that race … We’ll see what happens.”

DREAMers should earn citizenship, Dennis Ross tells Polk Tiger Bay” via Bill Rufty of Florida Politics — Undocumented aliens brought to the United States when they were children should not be deported, but given education and employment opportunities and a way to earn their citizenship, according to U.S. Rep. Ross, a Lakeland Republican often criticized by opponents for his deep conservative stances. It was Ross’ first public speaking engagement since he announced he would not run again for Florida’s 15th Congressional District, starting a Republican primary gold rush to get on the ballot … “It’s good to be back, but when you find yourself a stranger in your hometown, it’s time to reassess our priorities,” Ross told the heavily attended luncheon.


Chamber Summit: Early education is key for a prosperous Florida” via Florida Politics — Education, particularly early education, is a key avenue in the fight against intergenerational poverty, says Children’s Movement of Florida founder Dave Lawrence. Lawrence gave the elevator speech version of his organization’s mission during the Florida Chamber of Commerce Summit on Prosperity & Economic Opportunity. “We are, believe it or not, the most unequal of all the western industrialized countries,” he said, citing stats on incomes, job prospects, obesity and literacy for youths and their parents. “I don’t want anybody to be fooled. We are not close to the promised land,” he said. Among the “pertinent realities” Lawrence said Florida — and the United States — faces are that most children entering school today will be working in jobs and industries that don’t yet exist when they enter adulthood; nearly 70 percent of inmates in Florida prisons can’t read above a fourth-grade level, and those in the juvenile justice system are functionally illiterate; nearly three-quarters of young adults can’t enter the military whether due to substance abuse problems, criminal behavior or a disqualifying condition; and too many Florida children enter school already behind the curve.

Childcare, health insurance and housing are ‘fiscal cliffs’ for Florida families” via Florida Politics — State and federal programs aimed at helping low-income Florida families aren’t working, according to a new report from the Florida Children’s Council. “Positive child and youth outcomes, financial stability for families, and economic vitality for businesses are interrelated goals. There is clear need to rethink social service policy and align work-based solutions with child and family supports,” said Dr. Brittany Birken, CEO of the Florida Children’s Council. “These two-generational strategies provide a framework for developing systems that support strong child and youth outcomes within the context of family.” The combination of social programs was found to be lacking in the report, which concluded that if “children from low-income homes are to reach their full potential, there is a significant need to eliminate the current silos addressing adult-oriented and child-oriented programs separately.”


Kim Kingsley checks into Airbnb” via Mike Allen of Axios — Kingsley joins Airbnb in San Francisco as director of global communications June 5, reporting to Chris Lehane, global head of policy and communications. Co-founder/CEO Brian Chesky says: “[N]o one knows how to navigate and shape [the] new landscape better than Kim.” Kingsley writes her friends: “Be it Scranton or South Africa, my destiny, my heart were shaped by places and people — and now I get to help bring that beauty and bounty to a global community. Looking forward to filling you in on my adventure and hoping you’ll travel along with me on this amazing Airbnb journey. #belonganywhere.”

Julie Wraithmell tapped to lead Audubon Florida” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics — Wraithmell’s appointment follows her five-month stint as interim executive director while Audubon undertook a nationwide search for the post. She succeeds Eric Draper, who was tapped in November 2017 to lead the Florida State Parks system. “Julie is what’s best about Audubon. She uses science to guide decisions; she is highly collaborative and is driven every day to make a conservation difference. This also is why she is widely recognized all over the Sunshine State as a top conservation expert. We are excited to have her lead Audubon’s important work in Florida and to take that work to the next level,” David O’Neill, National Audubon Society’s chief conservation officer, stated in a news release.

New and renewed lobbying registrations:

Jason AllisonRobert Hosay, Foley & Lardner: Childers Construction Co.

Erica Chanti, The Rubin Group: WeWork

LNG developer hires lobbyist [guess who?] with ties to Trumpvia Greenwire – Developers of liquefied natural gas export projects in Florida have enlisted the help of Brian Ballard, a powerful lobbyist with close ties to President Trump. Texas-based Eagle LNG Partners LLC has hired Ballard and two of his colleagues from Ballard Partners in Washington, D.C., to focus on “regulation” broadly, according to lobbying disclosure records. Eagle LNG is moving forward with two LNG projects in Florida, including a liquefaction facility in Maxville and a second facility in Jacksonville.

Spotted: Will Weatherford in “Six Floridians to Watch via Jason Garcia of Florida Trend — It’s not easy to run the Florida House of Representatives and be both well-liked and effective. Weatherford, House Speaker from 2012-14, is one of the few who pulled it off … (The 39-year-old) Wesley Chapel Republican is a good bet to run for governor soon — in 2022 if a Democrat wins this year, or 2026 if a Republican wins.


Facing South Florida with Jim DeFede on CBS 4 in Miami: Progressive billionaire Tom Steyer discusses his campaign to impeach President Donald Trump.

Florida This Week on Tampa Bay’s WEDU: Moderator Rob Lorei host a roundtable with guests Pinellas County Democratic Party Chair Susan McGrath; political consultant Mark Proctor; reporter Joe Henderson; and radio commentator Barry Edwards.

In Focus with Allison Walker-Torres on Bay News 9: A discussion with House Democratic Leader Janet Cruz and state Rep. Robert Olszewski. Florida TaxWatch President & CEO Dominic Calabro will break down the budget and tax cuts, and take an in-depth look at sales tax holidays, the Omnibus Education Bill, and the Florida Excellence in Higher Education Act.

Political Connections on CF 13 in Orlando and Bay News 9 in Tampa/St. Pete: Democrats Alan Grayson and U.S. Rep. Darren Soto discuss their upcoming primary for Florida’s 9th Congressional District. Orlando Congresswoman Stephanie Murphy talks about her latest legislation in Washington. PolitiFact rates a claim made about funding sources.

The Usual Suspects on WCTV-Tallahassee/Thomasville (CBS) and WJHG-Panama City (NBC): Host Gary Yordon speaks with attorney Sean Pittman and Constitution Revision Commissioner Nicole Washington.

This Week in Jacksonville with Kent Justice on Channel 4 WJXT: This week’s guests: JEA interim CEO Aaron Zahn and Jared Rice, executive director of The Players golf tournament.

This Week in South Florida on WPLG-Local10 News (ABC): Co-hosts Michael Putney and Glenna Milberg hold a roundtable of the week’s latest political issues affecting South Florida.


Happy birthday to my friend (and the best State Attorney in Florida) Dave Aronberg, as well as Candice Ericks, former scribe Brandon Larrabee and Susannah Randolph.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including Florida Politics and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Schorsch is also the publisher of INFLUENCE Magazine. For several years, Peter's blog was ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

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