Winner and loser of the week
Winner of the week
Pam Bondi. The former prosecutor from Tampa came roaring out of the gate in the Republican primary for attorney general. She raised $200,000 in her first 30 days as a candidate (nearly as much as Holly Benson did in 60 days), and then at a Pinellas GOP meeting not only oushined rivals, Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp and former state health adminstrator Benson as a speaker, but handily beat them in a popularity vote. Bondi is the Republican the Democrats least want to face in November.
Runner up: U.S. Rep. Adam Putnam. He is the first candidate for agriculture commissioner to begin the election year with $1-million in his campaign account (compared to nearly $190,000 for likely Democratic nominee Scott Maddox). He was also the strongest speaker at last weekend's GOP annual meeting, overwhelmingly won a Pinellas GOP straw poll, and looked like the ag commissioner touring freeze damage in rival Carey Baker's back yard.
Loser of the week
Florida Power & Light CEO Armando Olivera. FPL’s aggressive tactics pursuing its rate increase led to turmoil and a revamping of the Public Service Commission and ultimately to a complete rejection of its rate case. The FPL problems also overshadowed the rate case of Progress Energy, whose request was also rejected this week by commissioners. Wacky suggestion for FPL: Next time don’t ask consumers to pay for your corporate jet travel and big executive bonuses. Runner up: State Rep. Dave Murzin, snubbed by Senate president-designate Mike Haridopolos and state Sen Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, who endorsed State Rep. Greg Evers over Murzin for the senate seat being vacated by Durrell Peaden.