Adam C. Smith, Times Political Editor

Adam C. Smith

Political editor since 2001, Adam Smith was named the best political writer in Florida by and one of the country's Top 10 political reporters by the Columbia Journalism Review. He focuses on state and national politics.

Smith has been with the Times since 1992 and has covered local and state government, as well as general assignment and investigative beats. He appears most Sundays on Political Connections on Bay News 9, is a primary contributor to The Buzz political blog. Smith grew up in New York City, graduated Kenyon College in Ohio, and when he's not chasing politicians tries to keep up with his wife, three kids and basset hound.

Phone: (727) 893-8241


Blog: The Buzz

Twitter: @AdamSmithTimes

  1. The Buzz: Maxed out on TV commercials

    State Roundup

    It's no secret that Florida is essentially several different states in one. How one area of Florida views the world — and votes — is often quite different from how another does. The Tampa Bay Times tried a little experiment one evening last week, monitoring the political commercials that aired in three distinct TV markets/political territories during the 6 p.m. local news.

    A few obvious conclusions:...

    Attorney general Pam Bondi speaks about the supreme court's decision concerning the health care bill at a news conference on Thursday, June 28, 2012, in Tallahassee, Fla. The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld virtually all of President Barack Obama's historic health care overhaul, including the hotly debated core requirement that nearly every American have health insurance.  The 5-4 decision meant the huge overhaul, still taking effect, could proceed and pick up momentum over the next several years, affecting the way that countless Americans receive and pay for their personal medical care.  (AP Photo/Steve Cannon) FLSC101
  2. Mayhem at Rick Scott rally


    We're getting to that point toward the end of a neck and neck, heated campaign where nothing much of significance happens but every day seems to bring greater annoyances. Rick and Ann Scott appeared at an early vote rally on the outskirts of Tampa, an area known as New Tampa, and were greeted by several dozen protesters, including a giant, not entirely unflattering paper mache version of the governor. They held signs that variously requested Scott return more than a $1-million in campaign donations from Duke Energy, that he embrace solar energy more, and that he maybe should reside in prison....

  3. Memo from Team Rick Scott: Blah, blah...We're winning...blah, blah...Crist isn't


    FROM:             Tim Saler, Deputy Campaign Manager
    TO:                   Campaign Supporters
    DATE:              October 24, 2014
    SUBJECT:       Early Voting Review – Day Four...

  4. In North Florida, a barn-burner of a race for Congress

    State Roundup

    ALTHA — To find one of the most vulnerable Republican congressmen in America, we drove through the North Florida woodlands halfway between Panama City and Tallahassee, turned at a cotton field, and then drove more than a mile down a dirt road to Grover Davis' farm in the town of Altha, population 500 or so.

    There, U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, R-Panama City, stood atop a giant stack of canned baked beans, his makeshift stage. He was on a tear....

    U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, left, and Democrat Gwen Graham square off during a debate at Florida State University on Oct. 15.
  5. NextGen Climate hits Rick Scott w 2 new Duke ads


    NextGen Climate is out with two new ads in Tampa Bay critizing Rick Scott as too cozy with Duke Energy and for the first time, the political action affirmatively mentions Charlie Crist, contrasting his record with Scott's.



  6. 30 minutes, four TV markets, one Fla gov race


    It's no secret that Florida is essentially several different states in one. How one area of Florida views the world - and votes--  is often quite different than how another does. The Times/Herald tried a little experiment today, monitoring the political commercials that aired in three distinct TV markets/political territories during the 6 p.m. local news.

    A few obvious conclusions:
    ***Competitive campaigns are a glorious gift to TV station owners. And even if your region is not so politically divided to be a top target from both Democrats and Republicans, a competitive congressional race -- like Steve Southerland vs Gwen Graham in the Tallahassee and Panama City markets -- can be gold for the bottom line....

  7. Big Dog Clinton coming to campaign with Charlie Crist


    Barack Obama won't make it to Sunshine State before the election, it appears, but former President Bill Clinton is expected to headline an early vote rally in Tampa on 5 pm Sunday. It will be at Cyrus Greene Park.

    Clinton will be campaigning with Congressional candidate Gwen Graham earlier in the day in north Florida.

  8. Latest GOP ad against Crist: He was helpless


    Here's the latest TV spot from the Florida GOP


  9. Maybe that seemingly irrelevent Libertarian will swing Fla gov race after all


    Given how little the vast majority of Florida voters think of Charlie Crist and Rick Scott after all their negative TV ads, it's pretty astounding that Libertarian candidate Adrian Wyllie failed generate sufficient support in credible polls to be included in any debates.

     This seems like an ideal climate for a none-of-the-above candidate even if, like Wyllie, that candidate raises little money and offers up pixie dust policy proposals too vague for even the most cynical and shameless major party establishment candidate (Wyllie intends to cut 30 percent out of the state budget by---you guessed it --- trimming unidentified waste and inefficiency)....

  10. Steve Schale: No, it only seems like Charlie Crist is losing


    From Charlie Crist adviser Steve Schale, making the case, again, that everyone should ignore that more Republicans have voted so far than Democrats, and focus on how Democrats are doing better with their early and mail-in votes than they were in 2010 when Scott sqeaked to victory:

    With three days in the early voting books, lets take a quick look at where we are today in the Florida Governor's race....

  11. GOP vote lead over Dems in Fla grows


    Marc Caputo crunches to numbers:

    More than 1.3 million Floridians have cast absentee and in-person early-vote ballots and Florida Republicans continue to have a strong lead over Democratic ballots cast: 142,000.

    Yesterday morning, the GOP lead was almost 138,000.

    There’s a sliver of good news in here for Democrat Charlie Crist: the GOP’s advantage in terms of percentages has fallen slightly from 11.7 percent to 10.8 percent....

  12. Video: Rudy Giuliani's revenge on Charlie Crist


    Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who says Charlie Crist promised him his endorsement for president in 2008 before endorsing John McCain, campaigned in Miami today for Rick Scott.


    Here's what Giuliani had to say about Rick Scott in 2010, as Scott was about to snatch the Republican gubernatorial nomination away from Giuliani's former Florida chairman, Attorney General Bill McCollum:...

  13. Here's the latest anti-Charlie Crist TV spot


    Released by the Republican Party of Florida, the latest ad continues with the familiar slick politician/lousy governor theme.

    There are two ways to look at the pre-Election Day ballots being cast in Florida: compare them to 2012 or 2010.

  14. Should we compare this year's early votes to '10 or '12? Either way, GOP is winning


    Marc Caputo crunches the numbers:

    There are two ways to look at the pre-Election Day ballots being cast in Florida: compare them to 2012 or 2010.

    Republicans would prefer 2012. It was a high watermark for Democrats with Obama at the top of the ticket and, within two days of early in-person voting, they started to eclipse the Republican advantage rolled up after two weeks of absentee voting. Democats wound up with a total 1 percentage point lead, after having trailed by about 6 percentage points....

  15. Here's the Florida GOP's favorite moment of gov debate


    The Florida GOP is sending far and wide a clip from the CNN gubernatorial debate where Charlie Crist suggests "It's worth it" if someone loses their job because of a minimum wage increase.