Please allow me to apologize.
We were hard at work on the post-Session edition of INFLUENCE Magazine when, almost overnight, the new coronavirus changed everything.
Grocery stores are open; schools, bars and restaurants are closed. At $37, round-trip airfare from Tampa to Las Vegas is cheaper than ordering alcohol-based hand sanitizer on Amazon.
The public demands information, then short circuits like the New York Stock Exchange when too much of it is bad. Shoppers are emptying shelves of disinfectants, which at least makes some sense, and toilet paper, which makes none.
We’re leery of doors, gas pumps and elevator buttons but haven’t gotten around to thinking about the other 200 surfaces we touched before touching our face. “Social distancing” has crimped courtesies but reinvigorated the idea of personal space.
As the state, and the world, comes to grips with what’s likely the new normal — at least for the foreseeable future — Florida Politics’ obligation is to supply the people of Florida with timely, factual information on how the virus is affecting communities across the state.
With that in mind, we feel it is inappropriate to direct our efforts toward luxurious feature stories.
But we still had some good content, some that could provide our loyal readers a welcome respite from the increasingly gloomy news about this pandemic. And we especially wanted to share our selections for the winners emerging from the 2020 Legislative Session.
We have decided to make this post-Session issue of INFLUENCE available online.
What you will find is a very incomplete, rushed edition of INFLUENCE. An edition that I sincerely hope is not the last.
An additional apology to our print subscribers: This edition will not be landing in mailboxes.
We hope that this crisis is a distant memory by then, but as of now, our summer edition of INFLUENCE is also on hold.
I promise INFLUENCE Magazine will be back in the fall, particularly because we will then be publishing our biannual list of the 100 most influential people in Florida politics.
Something tells me that list will be very different from previous editions.