Last Call for 5.21.24 — 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 University of Florida’s Hamilton Center for Classical and Civic Education announced 21 new hires, tripling the number of faculty members.

“Scholars around the nation are paying attention to UF, and last year we … had more than 1,100 applications to the Hamilton Center,” UF President Ben Sasse said.

“As a non-partisan academic unit, Hamilton is devoted to research and teaching excellence. We’re thrilled to have these scholars join our UF team and eager for them to hit the ground running.” 

UF said the new additions have expertise across multiple disciplines, fields, geographies, and historical eras and will “substantially enhance” UF’s research and teaching mission. Including the new hires, the Hamilton Center now comprises a total of 32 professors.

“We want to build the top Western civilization program in the nation here at UF, and we’re making great progress,” UF Provost Scott Angle said. “These new hires will help form the Hamilton Center’s academic foundation as we work to achieve that goal. We look forward to the research and teaching contributions of our newest colleagues.”

Hamilton Center Director Will Inboden added, “We’re building something special at UF. We’re eager to welcome these colleagues to Gainesville and look forward to their scholarly contributions to this diverse and dynamic university.”

Evening Reads

—“A hidden variable in the presidential race: Fears of ‘Trump Forever’” via Joshua Green of Bloomberg

—”Here are the key dynamics in a new batch of Joe Biden-Donald Trump polls” via Aaron Blake of The Washington Post

—”The real meaning of Trump’s ‘Unified Reich’ post” via David A. Graham of The Atlantic

—“Why money matters less than you think in the 2024 race” via Chris Cillizza of So What

—”There’s an arms race in Haiti, and it’s fueled by Florida’s pipeline of weapons of war” via Jay Weaver and Jacueline Charles of the Miami Herald

—”TSA gave Cuban officials secretive tour of Miami airport security areas, county says” via Jesse Scheckner of Florida Politics

—”How Wall Street lenders are betting big on the AI boom” via Asa Fitch and Miriam Gottfried of The Wall Street Journal

—”How free school meals went mainstream” via Susan Shain of The New York Times

—”The misleading, wasteful way we measure gas mileage” via David Zipper of Vox

Quote of the Day

“That is incredibly dumb.”

— U.S. Rep. Carlos Giménez, on a Cuban delegate tour of Miami International Airport’s security facilities.

Put It on the Tab

Look to your left, then look to your right. If you see one of these people at your happy hour haunt, flag down the bartender and put one of these on your tab. Recipes included, just in case the Cocktail Codex fell into the well.

It’s no secret that Florida is increasing in population every day, but the newcomers in Jacksonville, Port St. Lucie and Cape Coral get a Ka-Boom for delivering explosive population growth.

Former President Donald Trump is sipping on a Mum’s the Word after not taking the stand in the New York hush money trial.

The Joe Biden administration is getting heat for giving Cuban delegates a tour of MIA’s security facilities — perhaps they should have kept that excursion Top Secret.

Breakthrough Insights


Tune In

Marlins looking to stay hot vs. Brewers

After taking the first game of a three-game series, the Miami Marlins continue a matchup with the Milwaukee Brewers this evening (6:40 p.m. ET, Bally Sports Florida).

Miami (16-33, fifth in the NL East) has a long climb in the standings, trailing the fourth-place New York Mets by six games but the Marlins have won six of their last ten games, including the series opener against the Brewers.

Miami trailed 2-1 before sending the game to extra innings with an Otto Lopez RBI single. In the bottom of the 10th, the Marlins loaded the bases with one out and Josh Bell singled home Jackson Chourio to win it.

Trevor Rodgers is scheduled to start on the mound for the Marlins tonight. Rodgers has struggled this season, losing six of seven decisions with a 5.79 ERA. However, he won his last start, beating the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday. Rodgers struck out six and allowed three hits in five innings. Robert Gasser (2-0, 0.82 ERA) is scheduled to start for Milwaukee.

The series concludes tomorrow with a 6:40 p.m. first pitch.


Last Call is published by Peter Schorsch, assembled and edited by Phil Ammann and Drew Wilson, with contributions from the staff of Florida Politics.

Staff Reports


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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