Last Call for 12.31.20 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

A digest of the day's politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink.

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

The pandemic may have dominated the headlines in 2020, but Florida Man was lurking just under the fold.

The so-called “World’s Worst Superhero” added some all-timers to his list this year, as did his compatriot, Florida Woman.

Sachs Media dug through countless headlines from throughout 2020 to create a curated best-of Florida Man (and Woman) list for the seventh year running.

Among the “Best Florida Man Stories Of 2020” you’ll find a Volusia County Branch Jail inmate who impersonated a prosecutor and tried, unsuccessfully, to drop criminal charges against himself.

The list also includes one of the more egregious resume stretches ever, by way of a Melbourne Beach man who claimed to be a war hero, MIT professor and Bitcoin millionaire with a top-secret clearance. He got the job.

There are celebrity appearances, too.

Foxborough-turned-Florida Man Tom Brady made headlines earlier this year when he walked into a stranger’s kitchen thinking it was his coach’s house. And Carole Baskin became a “Tiger Queen” when she snagged the deed to Joe Exotic’s zoo.

Check out the full top-10 list — each accompanied by a Samuel Cartoons illustration — on Sachs Media’s website.

Coronavirus Numbers

Positive cases:

— 1,300,528 FL residents (+16,827 since Wednesday)

— 22,787 Non-FL residents (+365 since Wednesday)


— 11,082 Travel related

— 495,645 Contact with a confirmed case

— 14,055 Both

— 779,746 Under investigation


— 62,868 in FL


— 21,990 in FL

Evening Reads

Death transformed a year, and what may lie ahead” via William McDonald of The New York Times

Only one covid-19 treatment is designed to keep people out of the hospital. Many overburdened hospitals are not offering it.” via Laurie McGinley of The Washington Post

China OKs 1st homegrown vaccine as COVID-19 surges globally” via Huizhong Wu and Ken Moritsugu of The Associated Press

Shots are slow to reach arms as Trump administration leaves final steps of mass vaccination to beleaguered states” via Isaac Stanley-Becker of The Washington Post

Their finances ravaged, customers fear banks will withhold stimulus checks” via Emily Flitter of The New York Times

America has not fixed its deadliest pandemic errors” via Robinson Meyer and Alexis C. Madrigal of The Atlantic

‘No realistic path’ for quick vote on $2,000 stimulus checks, Mitch McConnell says” via Catie Edmondson of The New York Times

Will the debate over $2,000 stimulus checks help Democrats in Georgia?” via Perry Bacon Jr. of FiveThirtyEight

Lessons from a crazy year in financial markets” via Akane Otani of The Wall Street Journal

Republicans call Nikki Fried’s COVID letter ‘ill-informed, irresponsible’” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics

Eighteen Florida cops died in the line of duty this year. Almost all of them got COVID-19.” via Austen Erblat of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Jimmy Patronis looks back on busy 2020” via Florida Politics

As Florida manatees try to recuperate, we humans act like wild animals” via Craig Pittman of the Florida Phoenix

Quote of the Day

“If Commissioner Fried actually cared about what is happening, she would take a lesson on leadership from Gov. DeSantis to help unify and coordinate resources to achieve results for Floridians.” — RPOF executive director Helen Aguirre Ferre, responding to Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried’s letter to the Governor.

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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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