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speaker’s race

Speaker contest underway for 2022 House leadership

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

The last-ditch politicking has begun behind closed doors at an Orlando airport hotel. Freshman state Reps. Byron Donalds of Naples, Erin Grall of Vero Beach, Jamie Grant of Tampa and Paul Renner of Palm Coast, and most of the other 23 Republicans in the class gathered Friday at the Orlando International Airport Hampton Inn & Suites, with a vote expected sometime after noon. The meeting was closed to press and public. It appeared that more than 20 of the freshmen lawmakers…

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Final rules set for House Speaker’s race voting

in Statewide by

With just one week until freshman House Republicans are scheduled to vote for their leader, it appears lawmakers have agreed upon rules governing the election. According to a copy of the rules obtained by, members will not be allowed to abstain from the vote; discussion between members between the announcement of the eliminated candidate and the next vote will be prohibited; and “the vote count will not be disclosed under any circumstances prior to the final vote.” The 27-member…

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Epilogue: Randy Fine explains to colleagues why he dropped out of Speaker’s race

in Statewide by

Rep. Randy Fine has officially dropped out of the Speaker’s race, telling his colleagues he would rather be a “member of a unified team than the leader of a fractured one.” In a lengthy email to his classmates Friday night, the Brevard County Republican explained why initially got into the Speaker’s race and why — with just two weeks until the June 30 vote — he was dropping that bid. “A large part of the reason I decided to run…

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15 big questions facing Florida politics heading into summer

in Peter by

Summer is here — well, unofficially at least. And with it comes cookouts, summer vacations, and the start of the 2018 election cycle (again, unofficially). With a tumultuous legislative session in our rearview mirror and a jam-packed election cycle on the horizon, the answers to these 14 questions (plus a fill-in-the-blank) could shape the future of the state. — Does Gov. Rick Scott veto the budget? The Naples Republican isn’t saying whether he plans to veto the $83 billion spending plan;…

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Give Carl Zimmermann credit

in The Bay and the 'Burg by

Sure, Carl Zimmermann lost his race to neo-populist Peter Nehr by less than 1,500 votes, but Carl did so with determination and style — and in a district as egregiously gerrymandered as any in Florida. I served as a consultant to Carl’s campaign at the very beginning of his effort. Even then I could tell that Carl was a serious candidate who could have won had he run in a more competitive district. Unfortunately, the state and local Democratic party…

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