Sunburn — The morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics — 11.2.23

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Good Thursday morning.

Breaking overnight — “Sarasota man charged with threatening Jewish organization In New York” via The United States Attorney’s Office, Middle District of Florida — United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announced the unsealing of a criminal complaint charging Deep Alpesh Kumar Patel, a 21-year-old man from Sarasota, with transmitting an interstate threat to injure. If convicted, Patel faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison. According to the complaint affidavit, on Oct. 21, 2023, Patel left a threatening voicemail at the World Jewish Congress in New York City identifying himself by name and screaming, among other expletives, “If I had a chance, I would kill every single one of you Israelis. Every single one of you! Cause mass genocide of every single Israeli.”


Breaking overnight — “Bob Knight, Indiana’s combustible coaching giant, dies at age 83” via The Associated Press — Knight, the brilliant and combustible coach who won three NCAA titles at Indiana and for years was the scowling face of college basketball, has died. He was 83. Knight’s family made the announcement on social media on Wednesday night, saying he was surrounded by family members at his home in Bloomington, Indiana. Knight was among the winningest coaches in the sport, finishing his career with 902 victories in 42 seasons at Army, Indiana and Texas Tech. He also coached the U.S. Olympic team to a gold medal in 1984. The Hall of Famer cared little about what others thought of him, choosing Frank Sinatra’s “My Way” to celebrate his 880th win in 2007, then the record for a Division I men’s coach.


The Associated Industries of Florida has awarded its first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Water Policy, named for former Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, to Rep. Bobby Payne.

“Whether as a dedicated public servant or business leader, Adam Putnam has spent much of his life working to protect Florida’s water resources. Naming this award in his honor is a small recognition of his passion for water and unmatched commitment to advancing good water policy that was long overdue,” said AIF President and CEO Brewster Bevis.

Bobby Payne is celebrated as a hero of water policy.

“For the first recipient of this award, we could think of no one more deserving than Chairman Bobby Payne. During his time in the Florida House, he championed a comprehensive water policy package, as well as important investments in water quality, and has served as a leader making certain the Legislature is focused on these important water resource issues,” Bevis added.

AIF presented the award to Payne at its 13th Annual Florida Water Forum in Tampa.

“In a state like Florida, water is the cornerstone of all our major industries — from agriculture to hospitality and tourism, and of course, real estate. This is the foundation of our state, who we are, and who we can become, and that’s why I’m so proud to have my name associated with this Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Water Policy,” Putnam, now the CEO of Ducks Unlimited, said. “It’s particularly special for me to be able to recognize as the first ever award winner, my friend, Chairman Bobby Payne — someone who appreciates our valuable natural resources and the role that they play in a successful business community and a high quality of life for all Floridians.”

The Water Forum provides a venue for AIF members to interact with policy experts and legislators on key water and environmental policy issues impacting Florida businesses.

“I am truly honored to receive the Adam Putnam Lifetime Achievement Award for Excellence in Water Policy from AIF,” Payne said. “Adam has long been a powerful and passionate advocate for smart water policy in Florida and I am proud to play a role in continuing that important work. Water is Florida’s most valuable natural resource, and we must remain committed to protecting it and improving water quality throughout the state, not only for today but for future generations.”


@cmclymer: This is literally the only thing about Mike Johnson I find remotely appealing. I think we need MORE folks in Congress who understand the financial restraints on most American families. Using this as a knock against him is very weird to me. Focus on his extremist views instead.

@SHRTampa: Day = made. To celebrate the start of Native American Heritage Month, we are thrilled to announce that craps and roulette are officially hitting our floor on 12/8! Are you game?

@DouglasSoule: Just watched someone walk outside, shiver fiercely, and tell the person next to them, “Welcome to the North.”

Tweet, tweet:

@BobbyCalvan: Breaking News Alert: Filed my last story as a full-time AP reporter 3 weeks ago. Fittingly, it was about giant butterflies — some now fluttering in my stomach as I began a new role today as a “global news manager” for the @AP‘s Nerve Center.

@Fineout: No, no, no … it’s too early for that Mariah Carey song … c’mon now

@KenniMiddleton: I say this every year, but the disrespect for Thanksgiving is insufferable.

@MikeGolicJr: this discourse starting early this year. My opinion remains consistent: Christmas decorations are fair game from here on out, and that is in no way a dis to Turkey Day. Thanksgiving is a *day*, Christmas is a season.


Suncoast Tiger Bay Club hosts ‘Evening with the Tigers’ — 5; 2023 Florida Chamber Mental Health Innovation Summit — 6; ‘The Marvels′ premieres — 8; Formula 1 will take over the Las Vegas Strip — 14; Ridley Scott’s ‘Napoleon’ premieres — 20; 2023 Florida Transportation, Growth & Infrastructure Solution Summit — 20; ‘Squid Game: The Challenge’ premieres — 20; Florida TaxWatch’s Annual Meeting begins — 27; Florida TaxWatch’s 2023 Government Productivity Awards Ceremony — 34; 2023 Florida Chamber Annual Insurance Summit — 42; Zack Snyder’s ‘Rebel Moon’ premieres — 50; Michael Mann’s ‘Ferrari’ premieres — 53; Matt Dixon’s ‘Swamp Monsters: (Donald) Trump vs. (Ron) DeSantis ― the Greatest Show on Earth (or at Least in Florida)’ released — 68; 2024 Florida Chamber Legislative Fly-In and reception — 68; Florida’s 2024 Regular Session begins — 68; 2024 Primetime Emmy Awards — 74; Florida TaxWatch’s State of the Taxpayer Dinner — 75; South Carolina Democratic Primary — 93; New Hampshire and Nevada Democratic Primaries — 96; South Carolina GOP holds first-in-the-South Primary — 114; Michigan Democratic Primary — 116; Trump’s D.C. trial on charges related to trying to reverse his 2020 Election loss — 123; Super Tuesday — 124; ‘A Quiet Place: Day One’ premieres — 127; 2024 Oscars — 130; Georgia Democratic Primary — 131; ‘Dune: Part Two’ premieres — 135; 2024 Leadership Conference on Safety, Health & Sustainability — 190; ‘Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes’ premieres — 199; Republican National Convention begins — 253; New ‘Alien’ premieres — 257; ‘Captain America: Brave New World’ premieres — 266; Opening Ceremony of the 2024 Olympic Games — 267; Georgia Tech to face Florida State in 2024 opener in Dublin — 297; Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour stops in Miami — 341; 2024 Florida Chamber Annual Meeting & Future of Florida Forum — 353; ‘Thunderbolts’ premieres — 414; ‘Blade’ reboot premieres — 470; ‘Fantastic Four’ reboot premieres — 549; ‘Moana’ premieres — 605; ‘Avatar 3’ premieres — 779; ‘Avengers: The Kang Dynasty’ premieres — 910; Untitled ‘Star Wars’ movie premieres — 933; Another untitled ‘Star Wars’ movie premieres — 1,146; ‘Avengers: Secret Wars’ premieres — 1,285; ‘Avatar 4’ premieres — 2,241; ‘Avatar 5’ premieres — 2,604.


Seminole Tribe to launch Florida sports betting, casino games in December” via Skyler Swisher of the Orlando Sentinel — Sports betting has been in limbo for two years in Florida amid a legal battle over the carrying out of a $2.5 billion gambling deal between the Seminole Tribe and the state.

The Seminoles said they are moving forward with in-person sports betting and the new casino games after a U.S. Supreme Court decision last week gave them the green light to proceed. What remains to be determined is whether the Seminoles will relaunch an online sports betting app that would allow Floridians to wager anywhere in the state.

“This is a historic milestone that immediately puts Florida in the same league with the world’s great gaming destinations,” said Jim Allen, CEO of Seminole Gaming and Chair of Hard Rock International.

A Seminole Tribe sportsbook app should be heading to cellphones soon.

The sports betting issue, though, remains in litigation with a pending lawsuit before the Florida Supreme Court and a potential full-blown appeal before the U.S. Supreme Court.

The new casino betting will launch at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa on Dec. 8.

In South Florida, they will start on Dec. 7 at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Seminole Classic Casino in Hollywood, and Seminole Casino Coconut Creek.

They will launch Dec. 11 at Seminole Casino Immokalee, near Naples, and Seminole Brighton Casino, on the northwest side of Lake Okeechobee.


Ron DeSantis targets Donald Trump’s COVID response” via Trent Spiner of The Messenger — DeSantis took aim at Trump, along with federal health agencies, for what he called a failed response to the COVID-19 pandemic at a campaign stop in New Hampshire. DeSantis promised a “total overhaul” of federal agencies that led the response to COVID-19 under Trump, including the Food and Drug Administration and National Institutes of Health. He had extra ire for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which he called a “total medical swamp right now.” As President, he said he would institute “term limits for bureaucrats” at those agencies. The most recent poll of New Hampshire voters, conducted by USA Today and Suffolk University, showed DeSantis in third place with 10% of likely voters, while Nikki Haley was in second place with 19%. Trump had a commanding lead with 49%.

Joseph Ladapo lauds DeSantis’ COVID-19 approach during New Hampshire event” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics — State employees and assets continue to buoy DeSantis’ campaign, with the latest example being Ladapo’s trip to the Granite State. The Surgeon General accompanied the Governor to a “Medical Freedom Town Hall” in Manchester, where the two brought their patented brand of COVID-19 mitigation contrarianism to a New Hampshire audience. Ladapo led off his remarks with comments on the “confusing” staging of the town hall itself. “There are people behind you, and I wonder who designed this,” the Surgeon General said. “I guess it gets the most people in the room maybe. But, I feel, you know, I’m thinking, I, I want to be talking, and I want to see everyone I’m talking to, so maybe I’ll keep spinning.”

Joseph Ladapo offers support to the Ron DeSantis campaign in New Hampshire. Image via Never Back Down/X.

DeSantis campaign releases first TV ad in race — The 30-second spot highlights how DeSantis’ record of delivering results in Florida proves he is prepared to fill the leadership vacuum in Washington as President. The ad will air on broadcast and cable television across Iowa starting Thursday and backed by a buy of more than $320,000. According to the campaign, the buy will be in addition to the $2 million reservation the campaign already has placed from mid-November through Caucus Day.

To watch the ad, please click the image below:

DeSantis vs. Nikki Haley hits the airwaves” via Bridget Bowman and Alexandra Marquez of NBC News — SFA Fund Inc., the group backing Haley, is up with a new 30-second spot responding to attacks from DeSantis over her past comments about refugees from Gaza. A narrator says DeSantis is “lying” and “throwing mud,” and the ad then plays footage of Haley saying: “I’ve always said we shouldn’t take any Gazan refugees in the U.S.” The ad has aired in Iowa and in markets covering New Hampshire, according to the ad-tracking firm AdImpact.

To watch the ad, please click the image below:

DeSantis super PAC hits Haley over links to Chinese company in new ad” via Mabinty Quarshie of the Washington Examiner — Never Back Down, the super PAC backing DeSantis, released a 30-second spot, the second in less than two weeks, knocking Haley’s “dangerous judgment” when she was Governor of South Carolina. The seven-figure ad buy is airing in Iowa and New Hampshire; DeSantis needs a strong showing to turbocharge his campaign. At the center of the ad are claims that Haley gave 197 acres to Chinese company Jushi Group, the world’s leading fiberglass producer, to “set up shop” close to South Carolina’s Fort Jackson Army base. Jushi Group, according to the ad, has ties to the Chinese Communist Party officials and “supplies materials for the Red Army.”

To watch the ad, please click the image below:

Poll: Iowa Republicans not sold on DeSantis’ Hamas response” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics — The Des Moines Register/NBC News/Mediacom Iowa Poll conducted from Oct. 22 to Oct. 26 shows that just 9% of likely Caucus participants believe the Governor is the best bet in the GOP field to address the situation in the Middle East. That’s a little more than half the 16% of Iowans who say they support his presidential run. Iowans seem more comfortable having foreign policy handled by people with proven records in the executive branch. Trump is seen as the best option by 52% of respondents, while former United Nations envoy Haley is regarded as the strongest by 22%. Each of those numbers exceeds their performance in the overall poll, which finds Trump at 43% and Haley tied with DeSantis in second place at 16%.

It’s DeSantis vs. Trump at Florida Freedom Summit in Kissimmee this weekend” via Steven Lemongello of the Orlando Sentinel — The state GOP’s 2023 Florida Freedom Summit at the Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Kissimmee on Saturday is scheduled to include all the major Republican candidates as speakers, meaning DeSantis has a rare opportunity to directly take on his biggest rival knowing that Trump will be waiting in the wings. But the event comes as DeSantis continues to flounder in the polls, especially in Iowa, where he has focused his campaign seeking an early upset. DeSantis’ stature at home is diminishing. “DeSantis won’t be the hero in the room,” said David Jolly, a former Republican Congressman from St. Petersburg and co-founder of the Forward Party. “That’s an unusual feeling for the Florida Governor … But Donald Trump is the pick of Republicans, and that includes Florida Republicans. And Ron DeSantis knows that. Whether he’s accepted that or not, it’s just a matter of time.”

— MORE 2024 —

Trump is gunning to take over DeSantis’ base of power in the Florida GOP” via Matt Dixon and Dasha Burns of NBC News — Trump allies in the state are organizing an effort to flip Republican lawmakers from DeSantis endorsers to Trump. Two sources familiar with the effort said as many as six could come out for Trump as early as next week. The move is scheduled to coincide with this Saturday’s Florida Freedom Summit, which will feature all the major Republican presidential candidates and shine a national spotlight on the state. Details are still being finalized but they’re aiming for an announcement about Florida state-level elected Republicans’ moving away from DeSantis for next week. In addition to the summit, the third Republican presidential debate (hosted by NBC News) is being held in Miami next Wednesday. “It’s coming,” the source said. “Exact number not yet said, but it will be close to 10.”

Donald Trump seeks to chip away at DeSantis’ support at home.

Joe Biden touts investment in rural areas in Minnesota, the home state of his Primary challenger” via Will Weissert and Chris Megerian of The Associated Press — President Biden visited a family-run farm in Minnesota on Wednesday and is holding a fundraiser featuring many of the state’s top Democrats, championing his administration’s investments in rural America while flexing political muscle on the home turf of his new 2024 Primary challenger, Rep. Dean Phillips. The visit is official rather than a campaign stop. The President announced more than $5 billion in spending, mainly in rural areas. It will go toward better adapting agriculture to climate change, as well as expanding high-speed internet access and improving local infrastructure. The funding comes from infrastructure and inflation reduction laws, which Biden helped champion through Congress. “Instead of exporting jobs overseas for cheaper labor, now we’re creating jobs here and expanding American products and selling them overseas,” Biden said.

In New Hampshire, a Democratic congressman debates Vivek Ramaswamy” via Jonathan Weisman of The New York Times — Ramaswamy and Ro Khanna, a Democratic member of the House, squared off on Wednesday in New Hampshire in what was billed as a civil discussion between two Indian Americans over the future of the United States. But over the course of an hour at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, Ramaswamy repeatedly slipped into his stump speech on the “black hole” in America’s collective heart and his belief that the nation was not, as he once thought, the declining Roman Empire, while Khanna tried to articulate his economic ideas and talk up the record of Biden against his opponent’s blizzard of words. “It is, I think, regrettable to be carrying the water of Joe Biden when the fact is that everyday Americans know they’re suffering at the hands of policies that came from this administration,” Ramaswamy snapped back.

Vivek Ramaswamy squares off in New Hampshire. Image via X.

Nikki Fried says Florida is still a swing state, and Biden knows it” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — Florida Democrats felt largely abandoned by the national party in 2022. But Fried expects more support next year as Biden seeks re-election. The state leader said she’s in constant contact with Washington officials who are not only focused on Biden’s re-election, but on other critical races in the state. She said national leaders still view Florida as a swing state, something exemplified by Vice President Kamala Harris already appearing five times in Florida this year.


—“DeSantis among least popular Governors in America” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics

FAU presidential search violated Florida’s Sunshine law, according to Attorney General” via Victoria De Cardenas of CBS 12 — The search for Florida Atlantic University’s next president hits another roadblock. Earlier this week, Attorney General Ashley Moody announced the FAU Presidential Search Committee violated state Sunshine Laws. In her opinion, Moody said a method used by the Florida Atlantic Search Committee to narrow candidates down for its next president violated the state’s Sunshine Law “by injecting secrecy into a very deliberative process.” Back in July, three finalists for the job were announced, but then suddenly, the search was suspended.

Randy Fine-DeSantis rift exposes more flaws in secret searches” via the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — The ruptured friendship-of-convenience between DeSantis and Rep. Fine reveals new evidence of how politics corrupts higher education and why both were wrong to support the law that draped an Iron Curtain of secrecy over searches for university presidents in Florida. In case you missed it, Fine repudiated his endorsement of DeSantis for President and embraced Trump instead in an op-ed. With Israel at war and DeSantis’ poll numbers dropping daily, Fine, the only Jewish Republican in the Legislature, claimed DeSantis is weak on antisemitism and cited his conspicuous refusal to denounce Nazi demonstrations in the state. DeSantis accused Fine of turning against him in a pique over not being a finalist for the presidency at Florida Atlantic University.

Randy Fine exposes flaws in the FAU presidential search process.

DeSantis says over 3,350 officers awarded more than $22.5 million under state program” via Michelle Vecerina of Florida’s Voice — DeSantis announced more than 3,350 bonuses in total have been awarded to new recruits and officers who have moved to Florida under an ongoing program. Each bonus is $5,000 after taxes, bringing the total amount awarded through the Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Program to more than $22.5 million. “With a national lack of support for the important work law enforcement officers do daily, Florida has stood up for what is right,” DeSantis said. Of the 3,350 officers, 915 moved to Florida from out-of-state. Three of 47 officers from Illinois have moved to the Sunshine State following billboards placed in Illinois, which, according to the Governor’s Office, encouraged officers to make the move because Florida “consistently backs the blue.”


Benjamin Netanyahu may not last, Biden and aides increasingly believe” via Jonathan Lemire, Nahal Toosi and Alexander Ward of POLITICO — Biden and top aides have discussed the likelihood that Netanyahu’s political days are numbered, and the President has conveyed that sentiment to the Israeli Prime Minister in a recent conversation. Biden has gone as far as to suggest to Netanyahu that he should think about lessons he would share with his eventual successor. Biden’s trip to Tel Aviv last month was one of support, but privately, he also urged Netanyahu to proceed cautiously and not widen the war.

Are Benjamin Netanyahu’s days numbered as a politician?

Biden nominates 3 to federal bench in Miami, including nephew of major Marco Rubio donor” via Michael Wilner of McClatchyDC — Biden is nominating three individuals to the federal court in Miami, a venue that has seen a series of high-profile cases, including Bush v. Gore, the Elián González saga and the ongoing prosecution of Trump. Judges Jacqueline Becerra and Melissa Damian, both U.S. magistrate judges, are being nominated to sit on the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Becerra is currently overseeing a case involving the prosecution of a suspect involved in the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse. David Leibowitz, a corporate lawyer in Miami for the past decade, is also being nominated to the Southern District court.

Pressure to elevate Black woman to Miami federal bench remains after Biden names nominees” via Alyssa Johnson and Michael Wilner of the Miami Herald — Biden has identified his picks to fill vacancies on the federal bench in Miami but continues to work on finding a Black woman to elevate as a judge in the Southern District of Florida amid pressure from Black lawyers and Congresswoman Frederica Wilson. The White House announced that the President would nominate Becerra, Damian and Leibowitz as federal judges for the Southern District. Also on the list of nominees was U.S. Magistrate Judge Julie S. Sneed, whom the President will name to serve on the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, based out of Tampa.

SPOTTED — Rep. John Rutherford on the Cook Political Report’s list of “Republican Toss Up” races in 2024.

Vern Buchanan to host Mike Johnson’s first major fundraiser as Speaker” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — U.S. House Speaker Johnson’s first major fundraiser will be hosted in Florida by U.S. Rep. Buchanan. The Nov. 27 event is expected to raise at least seven figures. It comes as questions surround the new House leader about whether he can raise the resources necessary for Republicans to retain control of the House next year. Buchanan has hosted numerous fundraisers for the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) at his Longboat Key estate. The event this month will benefit the Johnson Leadership Fund. That’s a joint fundraising committee that will benefit Mike Johnson for Louisiana, Johnson’s American Revival PAC and the NRCC.


Florida Treasury to boost Israel bond investment by $120 million” via Caden DeLisa of The Capitolist — Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis announced on Tuesday that the state Treasury will allocate an additional $120 million toward Israel bonds. For the state, the forthcoming bond purchase raises Florida’s total investment in Israel bonds to $200 million, the largest total the state has ever held at any given time. “Following the horrific terrorist attacks by Hamas on Oct. 7, I vowed to assist our allies in Israel both morally and monetarily,” said Patronis. “To that end, I’m proud to announce the purchase of another $120 million in Israel bonds by the Florida State Treasury. Israel bonds are a prudent use of state funds and offer a consistently positive return on investment. As we’ve seen throughout history, Democracy and freedom are fragile, and Florida proudly stands with Israel, the only democratic nation in the Middle East.”

Jimmy Patronis is chipping in on Israeli bonds.

New school mapping grants bring the wisdom of the battlefield to school emergencies” via Anne Geggis of Florida Politics — With multiple doors, corridors and staircases, not to mention some with nearly 5,000 students on campus, an active school shooter presents the most challenging kind of circumstance for emergency responders to find where help is needed. And seconds can mean the difference between life and death if the emergency involves bleeding and trauma. “What you’re trying to do in an event like this is cut through the fog of confusion as much as possible,” said Alex Carney, chief operating officer for Critical Response Group (CRG).

Judge orders former Everglades Foundation scientist to pay $177K” via Bruce Ritchie of POLITICO — A state judge in Miami has ordered former Everglades Foundation scientist Tom Van Lent to pay $177,720 for the group’s legal fees after he was found in contempt of court for erasing data on a laptop computer. Circuit Judge Carlos Lopez in Miami on Oct. 27 ordered Van Lent to pay the costs, plus interest, after siding in a lawsuit with the Everglades Foundation, which has been closely aligned with DeSantis.

Bleached corals were rescued from an ocean heat wave. Now they’re going back.” via Max Chesnes and Jack Prator of the Tampa Bay Times — For nearly four months, Cynthia Lewis has overseen a lab in the Florida Keys housing more than 5,000 refugee corals rescued from scorching offshore waters. Her staff at the Keys Marine Laboratory on Long Key have faced swirls of heartbreak and hope since mid-July — when a mass coral evacuation began. Now, Lewis is finally coming up for air as the immediate coral crisis abates. On Monday, a restoration team took roughly 360 corals from the lab and drove them north to Tavernier, where divers boated the animals back to their offshore nurseries. The 13-hour operation was the first journey in what could be a weekslong effort to put every rescued coral back at sea.

There may be a break in coral bleaching — for now.

Lawmakers set sights on expanding vouchers for students with disabilities” via Brian Burgess of The Capitolist — Florida appears poised to continue expanding educational options for its students. A Special Session has been slated to begin on Nov. 6, with lawmakers preparing to address the Family Empowerment Scholarship for students with disabilities, among other issues. The scholarship program is intended to provide additional funding for students with unique abilities, a group whose growing demand for scholarships has reportedly surpassed supply. The legislative effort comes nearly seven months after the state undertook a sweeping expansion of its school voucher programs, an advancement applauded by many advocates for school choice. Yet, amid this growth, there is increasing attention on the limitations that the current system imposes on students with special needs.

Happening today — The Florida Gaming Control Commission meets: 9:30 a.m., Cabinet Meeting Room, The Capitol, Lower Level.

Happening today — The Monroe County legislative delegation meets: 10 a.m., Zoom link here. Meeting ID: 826 3711 8132 Passcode: 653462. The Duval County legislative delegation meets: 1 p.m., Council Chamber, 117 W. Duval Street, First Floor, City Hall St. James Building, Jacksonville. Contact Xzavier C.M. Chisholm II at 255-5011 or at [email protected].

Florida law making gun carry permits optional leads to dramatic drop in safety classes” via Fresh Take Florida — Floridians no longer need a permit to carry a concealed firearm, and gun owners are overwhelmingly opting out of the safety and educational training once required for a license. Firearms instructors are seeing a dramatic drop in student sign-ups for such courses, which teach safety and explain the state’s laws about where and how gun owners can lawfully carry pistols and legally use them in self-defense. As more people forgo basic safety and legal training, instructors say they’re concerned about the safety of communities and the impacts to their businesses.


Polling shows Fine vulnerable to defeat in SD 19 race” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — Cygnal released polling that showed Fine with weak favorability ratings in Senate District 19. The survey results also show that 65% of voters in the northern end of the district, those outside Fine’s current House District 33 jurisdiction, have never heard of Fine or have no opinion at all on his records. Moreover, pollsters said they tested how Fine would perform with likely Republican Primary voters against three other potential candidates. But after “basic messaging,” the poll shows Fine losing to every potential candidate in a head-to-head race. “Basic messaging around Fine’s past ethics issues, voting for a pro-gun control bill, threatening to cut millions of (dollars) from Brevard Public Schools and Zoo, and cutting funding for the Central Florida Special Olympics absolutely tanks Fine’s support,” reads a polling memo.

Ken Davenport remains on the ballot in HD 35 race — for now” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — A state House candidate won a battle in court to keep fighting ahead of a Tuesday Republican Primary. Davenport, a Republican candidate in state House District 35, remains in the running. Attorneys for parties in a lawsuit challenging Davenport’s candidacy could appear in court again as soon as Friday. And it’s likely the case will be resolved before voters cast ballots before 7 p.m. Tuesday when polls close. A lawsuit filed in Osceola County alleges Davenport should not have qualified as a candidate in a Republican Primary because he has not consistently been registered as a Republican for the past year.

Happening tonight:

Cuban American sales executive joins race to succeed Ed Montanari on St. Pete City Council” via Peter Schorsch of Florida Politics — Juan Lopez Estevez has filed to run for the District 3 seat on the St. Petersburg City Council. The seat is currently held by Montanari, who is not seeking re-election due to term limits. Estevez was raised in St. Pete by his family, Cuban refugees who came to the United States in search of the American dream. The family has lived in District 3 since 1975. The district includes parts of northeast St. Pete, including Old Northeast, Shore Acres, Harbor Isle, Snell Isle, and more. “I’m honored to have the following local leaders behind me in my run to keep St. Petersburg the best place to live in Florida,” Estevez said.

— LOCAL: S. FL —

Rudy Giuliani’s money woes mount; has not paid Palm Beach condo property taxes for 2 years” via Mike Diamond of the Palm Beach Post — Giuliani’s financial woes go much further than nonpayment of federal income taxes. The former Mayor of New York City and Trump confidant, who is struggling to cope with millions of dollars in legal bills stemming from lawsuits and criminal charges, has also failed to pay more than two years’ worth of real estate property taxes on his plush condo in Palm Beach, according to county records. A spokesperson for one of the investment firms that has been paying them, Miami-based Mikon Financial Services, says the firm is prepared in April to take the first step toward foreclosing on the three-bedroom unit at Southlake Condominium. Giuliani has not paid property taxes in either 2021 or 2022.

Rudy Giuliani’s money troubles deepen in Palm Beach County. Image via AP.

Mayor: I learned about Miami-Dade’s free fares days after transit announced them” via Douglas Hanks of the Miami Herald — Miami-Dade County’s plan to waive $9 million in fares during the last six weeks of the year went public on a Friday when the transit agency posted about it on social media as part of an upcoming overhaul of county bus routes. Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said she learned about the countywide free-fare promotion three days later, when a reporter asked her about it. “We’ll get back to you,” Levine Cava told the Miami Herald on the morning of Oct. 23. On Tuesday, the Mayor offered her first detailed explanation of how she could be so in the dark about what may be the costliest transit promotion in county history.

Miami hotel rates, revenues near top in nation” via Miami Today — Miami-Dade County’s hotels are booming, third in the nation in both their average daily room rates and revenue per available room in the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, the annual meeting of the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau was told last week. The county’s hotels were sixth in average occupancy, said David Whitaker, bureau president and CEO, who noted the delicate balance between rates and occupancy by saying that if average rates had been $49 per night, every hotel room in the county would have been full all the time. As it was, the average daily room rate for the year in the county’s hotels was $223.62 and the revenue per available room — factoring in vacant as well as occupied rooms in the county’s 66,176-room supply — was $161.11. Total weekly demand rose 2.4%, he said.

‘We are not above the law’: Miami cop charged with DUI after gun found on his lap near school” via Omar Rodríguez Ortiz and Grethel Aguila of the Miami Herald — A Miami cop was arrested on a DUI charge after authorities say a Miami-Dade Schools police officer found him near a school passed out behind the wheel of his personal car with a gun on his lap. Joevanih Sauvagere, 31, was released from the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center on a $1,000 bond, Miami-Dade County jail records show. Sauvagere has been with the department since 2017, Miami Police Chief Manny Morales told reporters at a news conference. Morales said Sauvagere has had no “significant” disciplinary actions in the past. “We are not above the law,” Morales said. “Things that are not acceptable for our community will not be acceptable from any member of this department.”

Fired Hialeah cop convicted of armed-kidnapping a vagrant, to spend 5 1/2 years in prison” via Charles Rabin of the Miami Herald — A former Hialeah police officer convicted earlier this Summer of the armed kidnapping of a homeless man was sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison Wednesday by a judge who found the officer was remorseless and terrorized the victim. The judge’s decision came after several hours of emotional testimony in which Rafael Otano’s mother and wife pleaded for leniency, and the former officer gave a brief statement, at one point breaking down and putting his head between his cuffed hands. In his statement, Otano said he did nothing wrong, never mentioned the victim and said he wished he hadn’t gone to work that day. He also asked the judge to let him go home to his wife and child.

Florida Keys tourism agency under scrutiny for possible money mismanagement. What to know” via David Goodhue of the Miami Herald — A report from Monroe County’s top auditor this week found numerous examples of financial mismanagement, possible double billing by a contractor using a nonexistent company and “potential self-dealing” by some staff of the Florida Keys agency that’s funded by tens of millions of tourism tax dollars. The findings in the 32-page Oct. 31 report, obtained by the Miami Herald, were so concerning to investigators that the Monroe County comptroller ordered the county’s finance department to immediately cease paying certain contractors that help run the Monroe County Tourist Development Council. The TDC, as it’s known in the Keys, was created in the 1980s to promote Florida Keys tourism.

Gulfstream racetrack accused by its former top lawyer of polluting water with horse manure” via David Fleshler of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — A former top lawyer for the Gulfstream Park racetrack has filed a federal whistleblower lawsuit accusing the facility of secretly pumping water contaminated with horse manure into a canal leading to the Intracoastal Waterway. Michael Fucheck served nine years as a general counsel of Stronach Group, which owns the Hallandale Beach track and several other U.S. racetracks. In his lawsuit, he provided photos and videos that he says showed the track using portable pumps to discharge contaminated water into the canal, in violation of agreements with county and federal environmental agencies. Gulfstream issued a statement denying the accusation and said it would contest the lawsuit.

— LOCAL: C. FL —

7th Circuit Judge Raul Zambrano to resign at year’s end to care for his parents” via Frank Fernandez of the Daytona Beach News-Journal — Circuit Judge Zambrano, who just presided over the trial of cop killer Othal Wallace, has announced that he will resign effective at the end of the year to care for his parents. Zambrano wrote a letter to DeSantis stating he intends to resign on Dec. 31. The Governor will appoint his replacement from a shortlist of applicants. Zambrano was an assistant state attorney for the 7th Circuit before then-Gov. Jeb Bush appointed him to the circuit bench in 2005. Zambrano was the first Hispanic judge in the circuit, which covers Volusia, Flagler, St. Johns and Putnam counties. He is also currently the only Hispanic judge in the circuit.

Raul Zambrano is hanging up his gavel to take care of his folks. Image via FlaglerLive.

Orlando Mayor lays out plan to spend more than $700M to improve city venues” via Stephen Hudak of the Orlando Sentinel — Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer outlined a plan Tuesday to use tourist-tax revenue to pay for an upgrade of Camping World Stadium, improvements to Amway Center and an addition to the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Not counting interest, the bill would be over $700 million, including $400 million for the stadium and $256 million for Amway, and require the city to issue bonds that it would pay off with future revenue from the tourist development tax. “The city will take on the obligation of constructing [both projects] and any cost overruns for that, which we think is a substantial risk in any type of construction project right now as prices keep going up,” Dyer said.

Volusia County Council candidates back dedicated fund to support more affordable housing” via Sheldon Gardner of the Daytona Beach News-Journal — Candidates for Chair of the Volusia County Council voiced support for creating a dedicated fund for affordable housing during an event this week that drew hundreds to a Daytona Beach church. Members of F.A.I.T.H. — Fighting Against Injustice Towards Harmony — a nonprofit made up of members of religious congregations across the county, organized a candidate forum on affordable housing as part of their Community Problems Assembly this week at Allen Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church at 580 George W. Engram Blvd. in Daytona Beach. Organizers estimated that more than 400 people attended the event, which focused on some of the group’s priorities such as affordable housing and criminal justice.

Brevard School Board: ‘Better training’ explains 10,000-plus spike in discipline referrals” via Finch Walker of Florida Today — Nearly a year ago, Brevard Public Schools Board member Matt Susin promised an overhaul of the district’s discipline policies. In March, an audit of these procedures recommended creating a centralized discipline office to reduce confusion among staff and administrators related to entering discipline referrals — a suggestion that has gone unheeded by Superintendent Mark Rendell. During a work session, discipline statistics for both this year and last year were presented to the Board, along with changes made in how referrals are being handled, how staff are being trained and more. The numbers have jumped by more than 10,000 compared to last year — something to be expected with staff better trained to record discipline referrals than they previously were, Susin said.

Investigation of purchasing card use by Brevard Commissioners remains active: What we know” via Dave Berman of Florida Today — Investigators continue to look into the use of purchasing cards by the five Brevard County Commission offices, according to Rachel Sadoff, the county’s Clerk of the Circuit Court and Comptroller. But it’s uncertain when the investigation will be completed or when the findings will be released. Sadoff last fall asked the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) to assist in the investigation, in part because that agency is an investigative body that has subpoena powers that her office doesn’t. Sadoff said FDLE officials confirmed to her that the investigation is active, but that there is no timetable for its completion. The FDLE’s Office of Executive Investigations, which deals with matters involving public officials, is handling the investigation.

Disney to buy full control of Hulu in deal with Comcast” via Georg Szalai and Alex Weprin of The Hollywood Reporter — Disney has agreed to take full control of Hulu in a deal with Comcast, which has owned a third of the streamer ever since Disney’s acquisition of the 21st Century Fox entertainment assets. “The acquisition of Comcast’s stake in Hulu at fair market value will further Disney’s streaming objectives,” the Bob Iger-led company said. A securities filing confirmed that NBCUniversal triggered the purchase earlier in the day. “We look forward to the appraisal process and the determination of Hulu’s fair market value which we expect will reflect the extraordinary value of the business,” Comcast said in a statement.


Tampa Mayor supports juvenile curfew in Ybor following shooting” via Olivia George of the Tampa Bay Times — Days after two people, including a 14-year-old boy, were fatally shot in Tampa’s historic Ybor City neighborhood, Mayor Jane Castor is calling for a juvenile curfew in the area starting at 1 a.m. Castor, a former city police chief, made the remarks at a luncheon Wednesday, blocks from where the shooting erupted in the early hours of Sunday morning in the entertainment district still crowded with Halloween revelers. At least 15 people were injured, and a 22-year-old man has been charged with second-degree murder. The shooting, which police say broke out between two quarreling groups, has stirred debate about the evolving identity of one of the city’s most storied neighborhoods, prompting both calls to temper late-night activity and concerns that local businesses will be pushed out.

Due to the Ybor City shooting, Tampa is considering a curfew.

Pinellas County approves $14.4 million for affordable housing projects” via Breanne Williams of the Tampa Bay Times — The Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners has approved $14.4 million in funding to help build more than 300 affordable homes for rent and homeownership. Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas and West Pasco Counties’ townhome project in Largo received $2 million. The 54 townhomes are planned for Longlake Preserves, located at 1756 S Martin Luther King Jr. Ave. The townhomes will be for those making at or below 120% of the area median income, which breaks down to roughly $73,080 a year for an individual or $104,280 a year for a family of four. Habitat owns the property and has secured $2 million from the county, $469,000 from the city of Largo and $884,600 from the state of Florida. Construction is expected to begin in December.

How did Pinellas Commissioner Chris Latvala get Titus O’Neil’s underwear?” via Paul Guzzo of the Tampa Bay Times — On June 14, 2015, wrestlers O’Neil and Darren Young, known as the Prime Time Players, defeated Big E and Xavier Woods for the WWE Tag Team Championship. Later that night, O’Neil, whose real name is Thaddeus Bullard, handed his underwear-like wrestling trunks to a stagehand. Somehow, they ended up in the hands of Pinellas County Commissioner Chris Latvala. In an Instagram clip shared on Bullard’s page, Latvala and his fiancée Bianca Sabrkhani present the trunks to Corey Harrison and Rick Harrison. They provide the history behind the trunks, but the clip doesn’t disclose how they obtained the wrestling gear.

— LOCAL: N. FL —

Rep. Matt Gaetz gets hero’s welcome in Navarre, touts his ‘constructive chaos’ in D.C.” via Tom McLaughlin of the Pensacola News Journal — U.S. Rep. Gaetz may be among the most controversial people in Washington D.C., but there is no shortage of love for him in his home district in Northwest Florida. A crowd of well over 100 people showed up at Navarre Park in South Santa Rosa County to give Gaetz a hero’s welcome and cheered him on as he regaled them with stories of his victories over House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and “the swamp.” “We took on the swamp and we won,” he said. Though Gaetz has been heavily criticized outside of Florida’s 1st Congressional District as the single member of Congress to request McCarthy’s seat be vacated, a move which ultimately led to McCarthy’s removal and threw Washington into three full weeks of chaos, that’s not the way he’s treated at home.

Pensacola Mayor D.C. Reeves makes the case for red-light traffic cameras at dangerous areas” via Jim Little of the Pensacola News Journal — Pensacola Mayor Reeves and Pensacola Police Chief Eric Randall made their case Tuesday for the city to embark on a red-light camera pilot program for some of the city’s most dangerous intersections. Last week, Reeves said the city was considering red light traffic cameras as recommended by former Pensacola Police Chief Tommi Lyter, who is now chief deputy of the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, in Reeve’s transition report. The transition report was put together by volunteer community members with expertise and experience in the subject areas. The Committee members met with residents and city employees to determine what solutions they would recommend to help the city be successful.

D.C. Reeves eyes red-light cameras in Pensacola.

Perdido Key wants to become an incorporated town. Here’s what that means” via Brandon Girod of the Pensacola News Journal — When unincorporated towns in the Panhandle talk about incorporating, it’s typically the folks in Navarre who have spent years struggling to incorporate as the area’s population continues to explode. The incorporation process is a long and complicated one that requires feasibility studies showing that a municipality can support itself, intergovernmental agreements between the new city and the county it resides in, configuring the variety of services a town needs and essentially building a city from the ground up. Going through those motions and failing to secure enough votes to pass a move to incorporate a town means starting over three years later.

DOT announces a grant for Port Panama City’s expansion” via Melanie Mitchell of My Panhandle — The U.S. Department of Transportation announced a multimillion-dollar grant for the expansion of Port Panama City. “The money will allow the port to expand cargo handling capacity and create over 300 jobs and millions of more dollars in revenue,” said Congressman Neal Dunn. The grant is worth $11,250,000. The project will include a 200,000 square-foot warehouse facility to manage the import and export growth of forest products. It aims to provide the safety, efficiency, and reliability of goods. The grant will also include associated rail spur extensions and terminal roadway improvement to serve the warehouse. The Department of Transit grant will be awarded from the 2023 Port Infrastructure Development program.


North Port Police investigate alleged ‘bomb threat’ attributed to City Commissioner” via Earle Kimel of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune — The latest in a long string of disagreements between North Port City Commissioner Debbie McDowell and City Manager Jerome Fletcher prompted North Port detectives to investigate allegations by an 80-year-old employee over what she thought she heard the Commissioner say to herself while walking down a stairwell at City Hall. According to a 10-page incident report filed by Police Investigator William L. Myers, on Oct. 26 city employee Donna Suggs — who was checking Christmas decorations in the third-floor lobby — saw McDowell leave a meeting in the City Manager’s suite “muttering something, but she could not hear most of what McDowell was saying.” While McDowell was walking downstairs, Suggs called down to ask if she was OK.

The beef between Debbie McDowell and Jerome Fletcher is enough to get the police involved.

CEO of nonprofit behind The Bay project in Sarasota steps down after 4 months” via Derek Gilliam of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune — The founding chief executive of the nonprofit organization that manages the design and multimillion-dollar transformation of 53 acres of downtown bay front property into a world-class park is back in charge of the effort after one of its top leaders stepped down, according to a news release. The change in leadership is effective immediately. Stephanie Crockatt replaced the Bay Park Conservancy founding CEO AG Lafley in March as the nonprofit’s chief executive and president. She had previously overseen the operation of the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy, a nonprofit that manages an urban park system in Buffalo, New York.

Officials to consider expansion of Breeze on Demand service to all of Longboat Key” via Jesse Mendoza of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune — Town of Longboat Key officials are lobbying Manatee County leadership to strike a deal with Sarasota County and extend the Breeze on Demand ride-share service across the county line, rather than continue to operate separate public transit systems that force riders to stop and change services. Longboat Key leaders met with Manatee County during a public meeting to discuss public transit and other matters of importance to Longboat Key, which straddles both sides of the Sarasota and Manatee County line. The plan would involve Manatee County pulling its public transit out of the northern half of Longboat Key.

Sanibel Causeway’s restoration: Construction impact on traffic in November. What to know” via Mark H. Bickel of the Fort Myers News-Press — November will mark 14 months since Hurricane Ian clobbered Southwest Florida. Residents, snowbirds and tourists coming for vacation remain eager for updates on everything from hotels and restaurants to the status of the famous piers in Naples and Fort Myers Beach. It’s not scientific, but based on recent scans on social media, people asking questions about the Sanibel Causeway are one of the most popular inquiries. The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Emergency Restoration of the Sanibel Causeway is ongoing but as each day passes more progress is made.


‘Bootgate’ and pudding fingers: How DeSantis became 2024’s presidential punchline” via Max Burns of The Hill — The past few months haven’t been easy sailing for the crew of the S.S. DeSantis, tossed around as they were by senior staff firings, a super PAC that seems to be actively hurting its candidate and the disappearance of nearly every major DeSantis megadonor.

Just a few months ago, Republican media outlets feted DeSantis as the future Trump-slayer. Now, the Florida Governor’s team can barely keep the lights on.

Through it all, DeSantis has remained committed to the idea that if he just focuses on the issues, the voters will eventually come to their senses. But the Governor’s bad habit of biting at any baited hook explains how DeSantis wound up in the headlines not for his policy ideas but for the miasma of weirdness that seems to surround his every move.

Whether DeSantis wears lifts in his boots isn’t, in itself, a very important fact.

But the media furor around yet another awkward DeSantis outing explains why his campaign has struggled so mightily to reboot itself despite multiple (expensive) attempts. According to social media trends data, Americans who searched for DeSantis during the past week were nearly 10 times more likely to click on a story about his footwear woes than they were to view any other news about him. For some of those users, DeSantis’ scandal will be the only thing they read about him all month.


A Trump-anointed House Speaker is an ominous step” via the Orlando Sentinel and South Florida Sun-Sentinel editorial boards — What’s most disconcerting about Rep. Johnson is not his extreme social and political conservatism, his wafer-thin resume of seven years in Congress, or his conspicuous efforts to help Trump overturn the 2020 Election. It’s that Trump was instrumental in elevating this election denier to the Speakership. The ultraconservative Louisiana politician, who in the past has advocated criminalizing sex acts between consenting gay adults, is now second in line for the presidency and augers an even more extreme tilt to the House than under the hapless McCarthy. Trump has profoundly offended the separation of powers, a founding principle of American life.

I grew up in Johnson’s district, where kindness can mask cruelty” via Charles M. Blow of The New York Times — Johnson’s efforts to undermine American democracy are served like a comforting bowl of grits and a glass of sweet tea. He is not abrasive. He is likable. He is from a part of the country where your nemesis will smile at you and promise to pray for you, where people will quickly submit that they “love the sinner but hate the sin,” where one hand can hold a Bible while the other holds a shackle. He is from a place where people use religion to brand their hatred as love so that they act on it cheerfully and without guilt. Johnson is on a crusade to advance a religious agenda, even when it comes at the expense of constitutionally protected liberty. Where he and I are from, even would-be oppressors can be affable. It’s not just good manners; it’s the Christian way, the proper Southern way. And it is the ultimate deception.

Suspended Miami Commissioner’s vicious attacks on prosecutor smack of stale Trump antics” via the Miami Herald editorial board — Suspended Miami Commissioner Alex Diaz de la Portilla is running for re-election next Tuesday, trying to beat four opponents while also trying to beat a series of corruption charges. Meanwhile, he’s spending his political capital — literally — attacking the prosecutor who put him in jail with mailers going out to voters dozens of miles away from the district he represents. Also reprehensible is how Diaz de la Portilla is running for re-election when it’s likely that, if he wins, the Governor will remove him again. That would leave his constituents without representation and put the City Commission in a bind, having to decide whether to appoint someone to replace him or spend tax dollars to run a Special Election.

Disney district mess: Employees flee. No-bid contract stinks” via Scott Maxwell of the Orlando Sentinel — If you look at the headlines coming out of DeSantis’ new Governor-controlled Disney district, you might think that Central Florida’s newest attraction is Mickey’s Wide World of Governmental Dumpster Fires. New reports show veteran employees and managers are fleeing, saying incompetent management is in charge. Spending on road maintenance is down while $795-an-hour checks to politically connected lawyers are increasing. And now we’ve learned that the district awarded a $240,000 no-bid contract to yet another political insider — a member of the state’s now-infamous Ethics Commission who used to serve alongside the district’s ethically embattled new director, Glen Gilzean. That contract was canceled Monday after the media raised questions.



— ALOE —

Meet Buddha, a Florida panther at the Tallahassee Museum” via Rob Diaz de Villegas of WFSU — Buddha is a 12-year-old 120-pound male Florida Panther, one of the largest and most charismatic animals at the Tallahassee Museum. Like most of the animals at the museum, he’s incapable of living in the wild. As a kitten, before arriving at the museum, he fractured his humerus, later receiving an injection of stem cells to heal the injury. Now, as part of his morning routine, Buddha gets laser therapy treatment via a wand that emits a low-level light to provide some relief to his inflammation, arthritis, and swelling.

Buddha is a popular character in the Tallahassee Museum. Image via WFSU.

This Andretti wants to build a global racing empire” via Jason Kelly of Bloomberg — There are family businesses, and then there are family empires. Michael Andretti has ambitions for the latter, and his eponymous racing concern is on the verge of getting its crown jewel — a Formula 1 team. In partnership with General Motors’ Cadillac brand, Andretti Autosport has won approval from the FIA, F1’s governing body, to join the grid maybe as soon as 2025. But he’s not there yet: On this episode of the Bloomberg Originals series Power Players, we uncover the obstacles standing between Andretti and F1 — and how winning that race may help him fully emerge from the shadow of his racing-icon dad. Andretti’s team is still awaiting approval from the commercial side of F1, overseen by owner Liberty Media. The big question is, will a new team add enough sponsorship and ticket revenue to convince the 10 existing teams that giving up a share of annual profits now will pay off later?


Best wishes to Sheila Martin.


Sunburn is authored and assembled by Peter Schorsch, Phil Ammann, Daniel Dean, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, and Drew Wilson.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises Media and is the publisher of, INFLUENCE Magazine, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Previous to his publishing efforts, Peter was a political consultant to dozens of congressional and state campaigns, as well as 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. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterSchorschFL.


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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