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Adam C. Smith, Times Political Editor

Adam C. Smith

Political editor since 2001, Adam Smith was named the best political writer in Florida by washingtonpost.com 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

Email: asmith@tampabay.com

Blog: The Buzz

Twitter: @AdamSmithTimes

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  1. Will Republicans finally make big inroads with Fla. Jews? Probably not

    Blog

    TAMARAC — Republicans can't win the White House without winning Florida, so every presidential election cycle they look longingly at Florida's Jewish voters.

    It's such a tantalizingly obvious key to locking down 29 electoral votes: hundreds of thousands of Florida Jews who overwhelmingly vote Democratic.

    Just reason with them, the thinking goes. They are disproportionately affluent and well-educated. Surely these Floridians can be persuaded that voting Republican is more in their self-interest, through lower taxes and unwavering support for the conservative government in Israel....

  2. Florida's Jewish voters a target for 2016 Republicans, but a near lock for Democrats

    State Roundup

    TAMARAC — Republicans can't win the White House without winning Florida, so every presidential election cycle they look longingly at Florida's Jewish voters.

    It's such a tantalizingly obvious key to locking down 29 electoral votes: hundreds of thousands of Florida Jews who overwhelmingly vote Democratic.

    Just reason with them, the thinking goes. They are disproportionately affluent and well-educated. Surely these Floridians can be persuaded that voting Republican is more in their self-interest, through lower taxes and unwavering support for the conservative government in Israel....

    Democratic presidential hopeful and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has strong support among Jewish voters in Florida.  (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
  3. So that's what Carlos Lopez-Cantera does for $125K

    Blog

    Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera appears likely to run for U.S. Senate in 2016, which means before long hard-working Floridians - or at least some reporters - will be exploring the ever-mysterious question of what a lieutenant governor in Florida actually does. Remember, the job paying about $125,000 annually has no formal responsibilities established in the state constitution or statutes.

    Well, here's an answer of sorts: The lieutenant governor's official schedule for the past 10 business days. You will notice he had actual things scheduled on four of those days. It's a wonder he can find the time to explore a statewide campaign.

    LT. GOVERNOR LOPEZ-CANTERA’S SCHEDULE
    FOR WEDNESDAY, MAY 20, 2015
    NO SCHEDULED EVENTS
    ###
    LT. GOVERNOR LOPEZ-CANTERA’S SCHEDULE
    FOR TUESDAY, MAY 19, 2015
    NO SCHEDULED EVENTS
    ###
    LT. GOVERNOR LOPEZ-CANTERA’S SCHEDULE  
    FOR MONDAY, MAY 18, 2015
    NO SCHEDULED EVENTS
    ###
    LT. GOVERNOR LOPEZ-CANTERA’S SCHEDULE
    FOR FRIDAY, MAY 15, 2015
    7:00am                        MEETING WITH DUNDEDIN COUNCIL OF ORGANIZATIONS
    Location:         Dunedin, FL
    12:00pm                     INTERCULTURAL ADVOCACY INSTITUTE 5TH ANNUAL LUNCHEON
    Location:         Safety Harbor, FL
    7:00pm                       SPECIAL OLYMPICS SUMMER GAMES OPENING CEREMONY
    Location:         ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
    Lake Buena Vista, FL
    ###
    LT. GOVERNOR LOPEZ-CANTERA’S SCHEDULE
    FOR THURSDAY, MAY 14, 2015
    NO SCHEDULED EVENTS
    ###
    LT. GOVERNOR LOPEZ-CANTERA’S SCHEDULE
    FOR WEDNESDAY, MAY 13, 2015
    12:00pm                     EL CAMBIO: THE CHANGE IN U.S.-CUBA RELATIONS PANEL DISCUSSION                          ...

    Carlos Lopez-Cantera and his boss
  4. What Jacksonville's mayoral race tells us about Fla in '16

    Blog

    Not a great deal.

    In no way would we diminish what it it takes for a virtually unknown local figure like Lenny Curry to unseat an incumbent mayor. It's a huge win for Curry and his political team, who ran an excellent race and showed that the Florida GOP hasn't forgotten how to execute a strong ground game.

    But if I'm Hillary Clinton and looking at how seriously I should fight for Florida, Charlie Crist's last race - he won just 43 percent in Duval County - would give me much more pause than last night's race, in which Alvin Brown won nearly 49 percent...

  5. Jeb in distant 3rd place in Fla GOP straw poll

    Blog

    Results from the Florida Family Policy Council's Republican primary straw poll last night, The significace of the social conservative group's unscientific and non-binding survey we'll leave up to you to decide:


    Marco Rubio:                     33.7 percent.
    Ted Cruz:                          30.3 percent
    Jeb Bush:(Tie)                    8.9 percent
    Scott Walker: (Tie)             8.9 percent
    Rick Santorum                   6.7 percent
    Rand Paul:                         4.5 percent
    Ben Carson                        3.4 percent
    Mike Huckabee                   2.2 percent
    Rick Perry                         1.1 percent
    Donald Trump                           1 write-in vote...

  6. GOP dysfunction to deliver Dems Fla House seats? Don't count on it

    Blog

    Florida Democrats wasted no time in launching robo calls and mailers to remind voters in swing legislative districts how Republicans flopped at governing this year and failed to adopt a budget on time. The message that Republicans can't govern combined with a presidential election that should improve Democratic turnout, party leaders hope, should Democrats gain ground in the Florida House.

    History is not on their side, however....

  7. Winner and loser of the week in Fla politics

    Blog

    Winner of the week

    Florida elections supervisors. Despite opposition and bizarre warnings from Secretary of State Ken Detzner that "forces of evil" might exploit easier voter registration in Florida, local supervisors of elections made such a strong case that Gov. Rick Scott signed the bill Friday — without even bothering to ask Detzner's opinion. Runnerup: Craft beer lovers, who as of July 1 can legally buy their brew in 64-ounce "growler" jugs....

  8. Is U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis looking like a political outsider?

    State Roundup

    ORLANDO — U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, the first and so far only Republican to announce for Florida's 2016 U.S. Senate race, declared his candidacy from Washington. He has pulled together a campaign team mainly from outside the state, and several Beltway-based conservative political groups have lined up behind him.

    But as other potential Republican Senate candidates mingled with hundreds of Florida GOP activists in Orlando on Saturday, it seemed the little-known representative from northeast Florida might be in danger of looking too much like a political outsider for his own good....

    Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush speaks to the National Christian Hispanic Leadership Conference in Houston, Tuesday, April 29, 2015. It is his second appearance with a Spanish-speaking audience this week. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan) TXPS105
  9. Fla GOP sets 2016 prez primary as "winner-take-all"

    Blog

    Members of the state GOP's executive board today approved new rules decreeing that when Florida holds its presidential primary next March 15, 99 delgates will be awarded "winner-take-all," rather than proportionally. Ultimately winning the nomination requires winning enough delegates, and if Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio have struggled to win delegates in earlier primary contest, Florida couild be a crucial life-line....

  10. Is Ron DeSantis the beltway candidate?

    Blog

    ORLANDO --- U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, the first and so far only Republican candidate to announce for Florida's 2016 U.S. Senate race, announced his candidacy from Washington. He has pulled together a campaign team mainly from outside the state, and several Beltway-based conservative political groups have lined up behind him.But as other potential Republican senate candidates mingled with hundreds of Florida GOP activists in Orlando Satursday, it seemed the little-known congressmman from northeast Florida might be in danger of looking too much like a political outsider for his own good....

  11. Run, Alan Grayson, Run!

    Blog

    The first time I saw Alan Grayson was in a hotel lobby in Denver during the 2008 Democratic National Convention. He leaned his 6-foot-4 frame menacingly over an uneasy-looking U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, lighting into the DNC chairwoman for not taking his first campaign for Congress more seriously. The last time I spoke with him, on Wednesday, Congressman Grayson was shouting at me over the phone. "Are are you some kind of sh-----g robot?! You go around sh-----g on people?!" he shouted....

  12. Adam C. Smith: Maybe Democrats do need Alan Grayson with pooping robots and all his other eccentricities

    State Roundup

    The first time I saw Alan Grayson was in a hotel lobby in Denver during the 2008 Democratic National Convention. He leaned his 6-foot-4 frame menacingly over an uneasy-looking U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, lighting into the DNC chairwoman for not taking his first campaign for Congress more seriously. The last time I spoke with him, on Wednesday, Congressman Grayson was shouting at me over the phone. "Are are you some kind of sh-----g robot?! You go around sh-----g on people?!" he shouted....

    Maybe what ails Florida Democrats is the lack of real, unscripted humans. Dubbed by Slate.com “the most effective member of the House,” Rep. Alan Grayson appeals not just to liberal Democrats but libertarian-leaning Republicans.
  13. Potty-mouthed Alan Grayson and his offshore investments

    Blog

    U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson, the outspoken, populist Democrat who thunders against Wall Street fat cats,and used to to joke about Mitt Romney's low tax bill, incorporated a couple hedge funds in the Cayman Islands so investors could avoid taxes.

    Grayson Fund Ltd. and Grayson Master Fund were incorporated in 2011 in the Cayman Islands, a well known tax Haven that Romney used as well, records show.. That was the same year he wrote in the Huffington Post that the IRS should audit every Fortune 500 company because so many appear to be "evading taxes through transfer pricing and offshore tax havens."...

  14. American Conservative Union rates DeSantis most conservative, Diaz-Balart least

    Blog

    The American Conservative Union released its latest Congressional ratings, and based on the ACU's selected votes, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Ron DeSantis is the most conservative member of the Florida delegation, topping Marco Rubio, whose seat DeSantis is seeking. Coming in third is potential Senate candidate Jeff Miller, while David Jolly, another prospect, ranks toward the bottom ahead of only Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Marco Diaz-Balart....

  15. A new super PAC steps up for Ron DeSantis for Senate

    Blog

    Ron DeSantis already has several conservative political committee lined up to help elect him to the U.S. Senate, and now he has a Super PAC in his corner. The newly created Service.Honor.Country. Action Fund (SHCAF) can raise unlimited campaign donations and make indepdendent expenditures on behalf of DeSantis.

    “It is important that we replace Marco Rubio with a like-minded conservative who will continue to fight for limited government and a strong national defense.  Ron’s background as a military prosecutor, advisor to U.S. Navy SEAL commander and Congressman position him to step in ready to lead on day one. As this will be a marquee US Senate contest SHCAF will work to ensure that voters have a real choice next November," said the chairman of the new committee, Republican consultant Dave Carney, who's clients have included Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich....