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Florida GOP Tries to Come to Terms with Trump

May 4, 2016 - 7:30pm
Donald Trump

As Donald Trump essentially locked up the Republican presidential nomination late Tuesday, Florida GOP leaders began facing a decision none of them expected to be making a year ago: Line up behind the real-estate mogul's White House bid, or figure out how to win around him in the fall

Backroom Briefing: Kirtley Takes the Stage

April 28, 2016 - 8:30pm
John Kirtley

For years, Tampa venture capitalist John Kirtley has been a largely behind-the-scenes figure in Florida's de facto school voucher program.

The website of Step Up for Students, Kirtley's scholarship-funding organization, discusses his role in helping set up Florida's system, which allows companies to offset the taxes they pay to the state by contributing to groups like Step Up for Students. That money is then used to help low-income students go to private schools.

Corrine Brown Appeals to U.S. Supreme Court

April 26, 2016 - 6:45pm
Corrine Brown

When the Florida Supreme Court considered a dramatic change to the shape of Democratic Congresswoman Corrine Brown's district last year, she promised to "go all the way to the United States Supreme Court" if necessary to preserve her electoral territory.

Weekly Roundup: The North Rises Again

April 22, 2016 - 9:30pm

Ever since the departure of the Pork Chop Gang --- a cadre of North Florida lawmakers who ruled state government through the middle part of the 20th Century --- the northern reaches of the state have sometimes seemed like second-tier parts of Florida.

Backroom Briefing: Carlos Beruff, Unplugged

April 21, 2016 - 9:15pm
Carlos Beruff

Carlos Beruff, the newest member of the Republican primary field for Florida's open U.S. Senate seat, wouldn't say during a campaign stop this week in Tallahassee who got his vote in the last month's presidential primary.

But whether he voted for Donald Trump or not, Beruff appears to be taking some cues from his fellow real-estate businessman-turned-political candidate. Take, for example, the television ad that Beruff's campaign released this week. It begins with him awkwardly reading from a TelePrompTer before setting his coffee on it and turning to another camera.

Weekly Roundup: Sticking to Decaf

Weekly Roundup: Postscripts

April 1, 2016 - 10:00pm

No matter what the political fight, there's almost always a postscript, some lingering bit of fallout that has to be dealt with in the aftermath of victory, defeat or even agreement.

And it was a week of postscripts in Tallahassee. Not any that might require a special session --- regardless of a cruel April Fool's Day tweet from House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island --- but some that were notable nonetheless.

Backroom Briefing: Ron Who? (And David Who? And ... )

March 24, 2016 - 4:15pm
Carlos Lopez-Cantera, David Jolly, Ron DeSantis, and Todd Wilcox

It can be a humbling experience for a member of the U.S. House to run for statewide office.

Aside from the most-prominent leaders, congressmen and congresswomen aren't generally household names even in their own districts. Expand that to the entire state, and the percentage of the population that knows much about a House member can fall even further.

Weekly Roundup: No Rest for the Weary

March 18, 2016 - 7:00pm
Marco Rubio and Donald Trump

The week after the legislative session is usually a quiet one. Lawmakers, lobbyists and reporters take some time to catch up on sleep, reacquaint themselves with life outside the Capitol, and generally begin the recuperation after a 60-day sprint.

Session Roundup: Let's Go Home. For Good This Time

March 13, 2016 - 3:45pm

As the 2016 legislative session came to a blessedly peaceful end Friday night, you could look at the 60-day assembly through a variety of prisms.

For House and Senate Republican leaders, it was an election-year opportunity to show that they could govern after the messy unraveling of last year's session, which ended with bruised egos and a lengthy list of unfinished priorities.

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