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Where's the love for Charlie Crist, Jeb?

Who does Jeb Bush respect more — Charlie Crist or Barack Obama?

Just asking because it's striking how rarely the former governor has nice things to say about Gov. Crist, while lately he's been mighty complimentary about President Obama's approach to Bush's top issue, education.

Bush has already hailed Obama's education secretary as a reformer, and last week Bush's Foundation for Florida's Future touted an education speech in which the president hailed Florida's data-driven accountability system, merit pay for teachers, and the need for high standards.

Bush also wrote a Washington Times column last week about the need for conservatives to offer thoughtful policy alternatives to Democrats: "Thankfully, governors such as Mitch Daniels, Bobby Jindal, Haley Barbour, Rick Perry, Mark Sanford and Sonny Purdue, among others, are advancing conservative agendas that are reforming fiscal, health care, environmental and education policies," Bush wrote.

Sorry, Charlie.

It's a Rush crush

Eager to turn Rush Limbaugh into a political punching bag — and motivator for campaign donations — the Democratic National Committee held a contest seeking slogans to put on a billboard near Limbaugh's Palm Beach home.

The votes are in and coming soon is an "Americans didn't vote for a Rush to failure" billboard. It's a reference to the talk show host declaring that he hopes Obama fails in accomplishing his agenda.

Tea and tax bashing

Former U.S. House Majority Leader Dick Armey is set to lead a "taxpayer tea party" protest in Tampa at 5 p.m. Monday at the Dr. Blaise F. Alfano Conference and Banquet Center, 11606 McKinley Drive. Basically it's a protest of "big government" in Washington, Tallahassee and everywhere else.

Driven to excess

The drip, drip, drip of controversy over Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp's travel expenses continues, but it's hard at times to tell the difference between fiscal watchdogging and petty politics. State Rep. David Rivera, R-Miami, the House budget chairman, is seeking details on Kottkamp travel such as odometer readings on three state sport utility vehicles reserved exclusively for Kottkamp's use.

It so happens that Kottkamp is supporting Rep. Marcelo Llorente, R-Miami, who is running against Rivera for the same state Senate seat.

Kottkamp sidestepped a question about whether he thought that had anything to do with Rivera's scrutiny: "I know what we're motivated by, and that's good government."

Democrat plows into agriculture chief race

A Democrat has stepped up to run for commissioner of agriculture and consumer services: former state Rep. Rick Minton of Fort Pierce, who comes from a long line of citrus and cattle farmers. Republicans in the race include U.S. Rep. Adam Putnam of Bartow, state Sen. Carey Baker of Eustis, and state Rep. Marty Bowen of Haines City.

Deveron Gibbons on 'Political Connections'

Check out St. Petersburg mayoral candidate Deveron Gibbons today on Political Connections on Bay News 9. The show airs at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Winner

of the week

Meg the goat. There's little sign yet that property owners or students will be better off after this legislative session, but animals may be safer from sexual assault. Lawmakers are moving ahead with a law banning bestiality. The bill stems from an incident in which Meg, a Panhandle goat (like the goat pictured here), was allegedly assaulted. No word yet on whether the pro-bestiality lobby is mobilizing.

Loser

of the week

Larcenia Bullard. The Democratic state senator from Miami has a penchant for eye-rolling statements, but she outdid herself when discussion about the bestiality bill included mention of animal husbandry. "People are taking these animals as their husbands? … So that maybe was the reason the lady was so upset about that monkey?" Bullard asked, referring to a Connecticut woman mauled by a pet chimpanzee. Doh!

Where's the love for Charlie Crist, Jeb? 03/14/09 [Last modified: Saturday, March 14, 2009 8:27pm]
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