Thursday, June 21, 2018
Politics

Carlton: One elusive mayor, one tough horse — the week that was

In a town rarely lacking for political gossip — or gossips, for that matter — news that Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn was headed to New Hampshire this weekend to campaign for Democrat-for-president Hillary Clinton had people whipping out their stubby pencils and calculating odds.

Two theories often get debated over power breakfasts about what's next when Buckhorn term-limits out as mayor — a job he would surely keep if he could.

One: Buckhorn could go to work for Clinton if she wins. Or two: Buckhorn runs for governor.

On the gubernatorial possibility, conversation tends to turn to what other names might be in the mix and the hurdle of raising money statewide.

But news of Buckhorn lending his shoe leather in New Hampshire ratcheted up talk of Washington.

What say the mayor? Not much yet. He's there to help Clinton, "a friend," Buckhorn said this week, also noting that it's always good for his city to have friends in D.C.

And governor?

"I'm looking at it, doing my due diligence," he said. "I haven't decided and probably won't decide for a few months."

Oddsmakers can figure out if that means once things get settled in the White House.

Oh, so many questions to be asked about Tampa's storied Gasparilla celebration.

Like: Why do grown men dress as pirates? And how come otherwise normal people lose their minds — not to mention their dignity — for the thrill of being thrown cheap plastic beads?

This year, one more: What would motivate a man to punch a perfectly nice horse?

Chad is a good-looking thoroughbred donated to the Tampa police years ago, a mounted patrol veteran of many a raucous night in Ybor City, lover of children, and police ambassador for people who might not otherwise approach a cop but wouldn't mind a pat on Chad's velvety nose. Chad has served honorably as the riderless horse for police memorials. In short, Chad is a good horse.

It is unclear why a fellow named Jacob McKenna approached the big brown horse with the cop on top at last Saturday's parade as if he planned to pet him, then made a fist and popped Chad square in the snoot, according to police. Alcohol, they say, may just have been an element in the crime. And if so, what a buzz kill. Instead of going home after the party, McKenna, 20, went to jail.

Right now you're thinking: OKAY, OKAY, BUT FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, WHAT ABOUT CHAD?

"Chad is just fine," reports police spokeswoman Andrea Davis.

Chad flinched, then continued his shift. Don't let those doe eyes fool you, that horse is one tough cop.

It says something about our state of mind that this week's breakfast seminar about active shooters in a time when mass shootings regularly make headlines completely sold out, with about 250 people attending.

Finally, that "tribal gathering" at Tampa's downtown Curtis Hixon Park this weekend for people who follow the antiwomen views of something called the Return of Kings was self-canceled in the face of planned protests at it and similar meetings around the world.

In the end, I guess the anti-feminists weren't man enough to make it.

Sue Carlton can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Hotel renovator approved by council to restore New Port Richey’s Hacienda Hotel

Hotel renovator approved by council to restore New Port Richey’s Hacienda Hotel

NEW PORT RICHEY — A seasoned historic hotel renovator and operator is going to take a crack at getting New Port Richey’s city-owned Hacienda Hotel back into action. New Port Richey City Council members, acting as the Community Redevelopment Agency, u...
Published: 06/20/18
Pope Francis criticizes Trump’s family-separation policy on migrants, says ‘populism is not the solution’

Pope Francis criticizes Trump’s family-separation policy on migrants, says ‘populism is not the solution’

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis stepped into a growing controversy over President Donald Trump’s immigration policies, criticizing the separation of migrant families at the U.S.-Mexican border and saying that "populism" and "creating psychosis" are not t...
Published: 06/20/18
Raburn out in State House 57 race. Now who’s in?

Raburn out in State House 57 race. Now who’s in?

Well, that didn’t last long.U.S. Army veteran Michael Sean McCoy filed to run as the Republican candidate in the State House, District 57 race just hours after incumbent State Rep. Jake Raburn, R-Lithia, announced he was stepping down.McCoy, who live...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/20/18
Romano: A Tampa Bay ‘superstar’ caught in the crosshairs of Trump’s border policy

Romano: A Tampa Bay ‘superstar’ caught in the crosshairs of Trump’s border policy

At this moment, she is Tampa Bay’s most influential export. A smart, accomplished and powerful attorney making life-altering decisions on an international stage.But what of tomorrow? And the day after?When the story of President Donald Trump’s border...
Published: 06/19/18
‘Don’t leave me, Mom’: Detainee tells of separation from son

‘Don’t leave me, Mom’: Detainee tells of separation from son

SEATTLE — The call came at mealtime — an anonymous threat demanding $5,000 or her son’s life. So Blanca Orantes-Lopez, her 8-year-old boy and his father packed up and left the Pacific surfing town of Puerto La Libertad in El Salvador and headed for t...
Published: 06/19/18
Trump defiant as border crisis escalates, prepares to lobby House GOP on immigration bills

Trump defiant as border crisis escalates, prepares to lobby House GOP on immigration bills

WASHINGTON - As he prepared to visit Capitol Hill, President Donald Trump on Tuesday continued to insist that Congress produce comprehensive immigration legislation, while anxious Republicans explored a narrower fix to the administration policy of se...
Published: 06/19/18
Trump, GOP to huddle as outrage builds over border policy

Trump, GOP to huddle as outrage builds over border policy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Calls are mounting on Capitol Hill for the Trump administration to end the separation of families at the southern border ahead of a visit from President Donald Trump to discuss legislation.Trump’s meeting late Tuesday afternoon with...
Published: 06/19/18
Another detention center for immigrant children planned for Houston

Another detention center for immigrant children planned for Houston

Another facility intended for detaining undocumented children is reportedly in the works for Houston as the number of children separated from their parents at the border continues to swell.Southwest Key Programs, the same contractor that operates the...
Published: 06/19/18
Muralist working with huge St. Pete ‘canvas’ to create neighborhood eye-grabber

Muralist working with huge St. Pete ‘canvas’ to create neighborhood eye-grabber

ST. PETERSBURG — They appear to rise out of nowhere — two enormous, reclaimed-water tanks with an artist’s white clouds scudding across a blue background.A closer view reveals silhouettes of a lone coyote howling at the sky, mangrove islands, oak, cy...
Published: 06/19/18
FBI agent removed from Russia probe for anti-Trump texts says he’s willing to testify before Congress

FBI agent removed from Russia probe for anti-Trump texts says he’s willing to testify before Congress

The FBI agent who was removed from the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election for sending anti-Trump texts intends to testify before the House Judiciary Committee and any other congressional committee that asks, his attorney sai...
Published: 06/17/18