Saturday, February 24, 2018
News Roundup

News at noon: Jeb really likes Rubio, Jameis for Rookie of the Year, guns on campuses, Mary J. Blige and more

• An upbeat Jeb Bush began a three-day bus tour through New Hampshire last night, and between stops he chatted with several reporters aboard his bus. When asked why he never publicly endorsed Marco Rubio in his 2010 U.S. Senate campaign against former Gov. Charlie Crist, he recounted a story we hadn't heard before — he talked Rubio out of giving up on his longshot campaign when prospects looked bleak in the summer of 2009. We'll have more from Jeb's New Hampshire tour today in The Buzz.

• Seven games into his pro career, Jameis Winston has emerged as a legitimate candidate for NFL Rookie of the Year. Since his disastrous debut against the Tennessee Titans and a near-perfect performance by No. 2 draft pick QB Marcus Mariota, Winston has improved (and Mariota, for what it's worth, has suffered).

• In its second of three committee stops in the House, a bill that would allow guns on Florida's college and university campuses is gaining support again today, mostly along a party-line vote. The legislation continues to draw passionate testimony from both gun-rights supporters and gun-control advocates. The House bill has passed out of subcommittee and is headed for the Judiciary Committee; the Senate's companion bill awaits a third and final committee hearing.

• A new ranking of 1,268 smaller U.S. cities looking at 22 factors from affordability and economic health to depth of education and health services and overall quality of life finds Pensacola the highest rated city in Florida — yet still trailing 51 higher ranked places in other states. In the Tampa Bay area, Valrico ranks high with the nation's 17th best economic health, followed by up-and coming Wesley Chapel and Bradenton — all locations, it should be noted, that are close to Interstate 75. Dunedin, Pinellas Park, Largo and Riverview also ranked favorably.

• Mary J. Blige is the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul. Few pop artists in history have merited a title so regally apropos. There's the King, Elvis Presley. The King of Pop, Michael Jackson. The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin. "Blige, who performs at Tampa's USF Sun Dome on Sunday, isn't always thought of in such pantheonic terms," writes Jay Cridlin. "But it's time we change that." Blige performs with Keyshia Cole on Sunday at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa.

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High school scoreboard for Feb. 23

Friday’s scoreboardSoftballSpringstead 2, Crystal River 0BaseballCalvary Christian 9, Countryside 2Northeast 15, Tarpon Springs 1
Updated: 1 hour ago
Florida Capitol Republicans promise ‘complete investigation’ of what went wrong

Florida Capitol Republicans promise ‘complete investigation’ of what went wrong

TALLAHASSEE — A bombshell that South Florida police ignored tips that a teenager was planning an assault on a school and then failed to stop him when he attacked seems destined to complicate the election-year discussion around mass shootings.Even in ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Top Justice official alerted White House 2 weeks ago to ongoing issues in Kushner’s security clearance

Top Justice official alerted White House 2 weeks ago to ongoing issues in Kushner’s security clearance

WASHINGTON — A top Justice Department official alerted the White House two weeks ago that significant information requiring additional investigation would further delay the security clearance process of senior adviser Jared Kushner, three people fami...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Indiana man killed, two hurt as boats collide on Little Manatee River

Indiana man killed, two hurt as boats collide on Little Manatee River

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Updated: 3 hours ago
Here are the GOP’s responses to the Parkland massacre. Would any have worked?

Here are the GOP’s responses to the Parkland massacre. Would any have worked?

Gov. Rick Scott and Republican leadership in the Florida Legislature have rolled out their ideas for change in response to the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. But would these measures have made a difference in the worst mass...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Former Florida congressmen say gun control measures need to go much further

Former Florida congressmen say gun control measures need to go much further

TAMPA — A bipartisan pair of former congressmen spoke Friday about gun safety measures that are more drastic than those being considered following the Parkland school shootings, and about hopes for a national youth movement comparable to the 1960s an...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Restricting bullets rather than guns might cut toll of school shootings, some experts say

Restricting bullets rather than guns might cut toll of school shootings, some experts say

This is the sad new math in the age of school slaughter.If one student comes to school with a firearm and 10 ammunition magazines filled with 30 bullets each, and another comes with a firearm and 30 magazines filled with 10 bullets each, who can crea...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Epilogue: Lee Davis, businessman and adventurer, survived many a scrape

Epilogue: Lee Davis, businessman and adventurer, survived many a scrape

TAMPA — Friends and family have a saying about Lee Thornton Davis Jr. Once you met him, even for just a moment, you knew him forever."He was the most outgoing person I’d ever met," Dick Greco said, which is something coming from Tampa’s gregarious, 8...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Edward Peachey demands severance from CareerSource before stepping down

Edward Peachey demands severance from CareerSource before stepping down

The head of the Pinellas and Hillsborough career centers under multiple investigations into the way they report job placement figures says he has no intention of stepping down.That’s unless he is paid five months severance.In a letter from his attorn...
Updated: 6 hours ago
She’s taught at the Parkland high school for 14 years. Can she go back?

She’s taught at the Parkland high school for 14 years. Can she go back?

PARKLAND — She was afraid of what it would feel like, but she needed to know, so Melissa Falkowski pulled into the faculty parking lot. She took a deep breath in through her nose and climbed out of her car. She was back, in front of Marjory Stoneman ...
Updated: 6 hours ago