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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Davis in the 'Glades



Davisglades2 Jim Davis knelt down and spread a map of Florida on the ground. “It’s almost like we’re going into battle,” he said, pointing to Lake Okeechobee.

Davis brought the war with Big Sugar to the source Saturday, denouncing the more than $4-million that has been poured into third-party groups aimed at crushing his hopes of winning the Democratic nomination for governor.

“The commitment of the federal government is in jeapordy,” Davis said from atop the Herbert Hoover Dike, “and it’s because of a vote that was cast by Rod Smith and the Florida Legislature for a bill the governor signed that sent a very clear message to congress that we as Floridians were not serious about restoring the Everglades.”

Davis said he has a seven point plan to continue improvements to the Everglades, including accelerating land acquisition and appointing water management district members who are committed to restoration. Davis was joined at the event by Bob Graham, his finance chairman Mitchell Berger and Fort Lauderdale attorney Sam Poole.

UPDATE: Smith's campaign sends an e-mail - headline "Jim Davis has some explaining to do" - and asking why he hasn't returned $68,000 he has taken from sugar interests. Included in that is $8,000 the Smith camp says Davis got in the gubernatorial race. ("The sugar industry has been an important and constructive part of cleaning up the Everglades until the legislature started loosening the standards," Davis told reporters Friday night.) Someone has posted the entire e-mail in comments.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 12:42pm]


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