Steve Contorno, Political Editor

Steve Contorno

Political Editor

I'm the Political Editor for the Tampa Bay Times. It's my job to tell you what is going on in Washington that might affect you as a Floridian. Above all else, I want to hold your government and elected representatives in Congress accountable. Maybe you'll also learn something interesting or funny from me, too. I grew up just outside Chicago, went to the University of Illinois and covered politics and government in Illinois, Wisconsin, Virginia and Washington, D.C., before joining the Tampa Bay Times as a PolitiFact writer in 2013. I may have started in a notoriously corrupt state, but I've learned grift and greed don't end at state boundaries. And neither do the good intentions of well-meaning people. Your emails and tips keep me going (as do black coffee, Chipotle and dreams of witnessing a Chicago Bears Super Bowl).

Remembering Pulse: DeSantis left out LGBTQ in proclamation. Records show another version existed.

LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times McKenna Post waves a rainbow flag while standing with her mother, Randa Black, at a vigil at Lake Eola honoring the 49 lives lost exactly one year earlier in a mass shooting inside Pulse, a gay nightclub, in Orlando, Fla., on Monday, June 12, 2017. The event was part of
The governor’s office blamed a staffer for the confusion.

Andrew Gillum shifts campaign cash to a new nonprofit, blocking it from public view

Former Florida Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum speaks to supporters during a gathering at the Florida Democratic Party state conference, Friday, June 7, 2019, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
A nonprofit makes it easier to spend directly on voter registration, the Democrat’s spokesman said.

Ross Perot, Donald Trump and the appeal of the outsider: One Florida voter's story

Ross Perot waves to the huge crowd at the Sun Dome in Tampa.
On the day of Perot's death, a St. Petersburg man reflects on his vote for the Texas billionaire in 1992: 'I'd do it again'

‘Serious disruption:’ SunPass breakdowns leave Florida airports fed up, new records show

This image shows cars backed up attempting to exit a parking garage on June 12 at Tampa International Airport. The image was sent by airport Vice President John Tiliacos to Conduent, the company that operates the SunPass system, on June 13. A SunPass problem caused the backup. The image was obtained in a records request with Tampa International Airport.
SunPass problems go beyond the highway. In emails and interviews, airport officials complained about problems with the toll system after Conduent took over.

After debates, Democratic presidential candidates leave behind a vacuum in Florida for Trump to fill

Democratic presidential candidates attend the first primary debate for the 2020 elections at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Miami. [AL DIAZ  ADIAZ | Miami Herald]
It’s back to Iowa and New Hampshire for the contenders, leaving Trump unchecked in the country’s most important swing state.