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Alex Leary, Times Washington Bureau Chief

Alex Leary

Alex Leary is the Washington bureau chief for the Tampa Bay Times. He previously worked in the Times' state capital bureau, and before that covered local politics, environmental issues and law enforcement.

Alex is a graduate of Ithaca College (journalism/anthropology) and began his career at the Valley News in New Hampshire. Alex was born in La Crosse, Wis., and raised in upstate New York along with six brothers and sisters. He lives in Washington.

Phone: (202) 306-4807

Email: leary@tampabay.com

Blog: The Buzz

Twitter: @LearyReports

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  1. Jeb Bush's Super PAC draws another FEC complaint

    Blog

    The liberal group American Democracy Legal Fund has filed another FEC complaint against Jeb Bush, arguing he is violating election law by coordinating directly with his Right to Rise Super PAC.

    "Mr. Bush's motivation for failing to declare his candidacy is to skirt the prohibition on federal candidates raising soft money. By failing to declare himself a "candidate," he takes the position that he can fundraise for Right to Rise Super PAC, Inc. without violating the law," the complaint states. "But as discussed in detail in the February Complaint, Mr. Bush triggered candidate status several months ago when he began traveling the country  Mr. Bush is no longer in the exploratory phase of his campaign and thus, he has violated the law by (1) failing to declare himself a candidate and register and report with the Commission, and (2) raising money for Right to Rise Super PAC, Inc., a soft money entity."...

  2. In California for fundraising, Rubio gets offer to learn about climate change

    Blog

    With Marco Rubio in California for fundraising Monday and Tuesday, an environmental group is seeking to call attention to his doubts about man's contribution to climate change.

    "Rubio and his fellow Republican science-deniers are wrong. We know that we don’t have to choose between a healthy environment and a strong economy—and California serves as a model for the nation of how we can address climate change and prosper while doing it," NextGen Climate said in a release, offering to "meet" with Rubio and educate him....

  3. What Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush are up to the week of April 27

    Blog

    What Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush are up to the week of April 27:

    Rubio will be in California on Monday and Tuesday for fundraising. On Tuesday he does a town-hall style event in Los Angeles. Then he's back to DC for his Senate duty, with a Thursday fundraiser at the home of Wayne Berman featuring top lobbyists....

  4. Obama: 'Jeb Bush, do you really want to do this?'

    Blog

    Jeb Bush was a popular topic at the White House Correspondents' Dinner on Saturday in Washington. President Obama joked about Bush marking himself as Hispanic on a voter registration form and then, mocking the whole celebrity-laden dinner, had his alter ego ask, "Jeb Bush do you really want to do this?"

    In 2013, Obama poked fun at Marco Rubio's age....

  5. GOP columnist: Rubio can't be trusted on Senate plans

    Blog

    Republican commentator Chris Ingram continues his longtime argument against Marco Rubio in a Tampa Tribune column today. Ingram suggests Rubio will run for his Senate seat if his presidential bid falters, something Rubio says he will not do....

  6. Rubio touts his experience before Des Moines Register edit board

    Blog

    Marco Rubio is in Iowa Saturday and made the required stop to the Des Moines Register editorial board, and made the case why he is ready to be president. In a new variation on his answer, Rubio called himself the "chief administrative officer" of the Florida House. ...

  7. 'Get a life,' Mitt Romney tells graduates in Jacksonville

    Blog

    Mitt Romney had advice Saturday for graduates at Jacksonville University: Get a life.

    "That phrase is actually pretty good advice for all of us,” Romney said. “Get a life, have a life, live your life in full. Embrace every fruitful dimension of life that you possibly can.”

    “The country needs all of you to serve. America faces daunting challenges: generational poverty, looming debt, a warming climate and a world that is increasingly dangerous and tumultuous. Washington appears inept, powerless and without an effective strategy to overcome any of these. America needs your passion, your impatience, your participation.”...

  8. Bush retreat to draw 350 to Miami

    Blog

    More than 350 Jeb Bush donors and supporters will gather at a high-end South Beach hotel on Sunday and Monday, according to his Right to Rise PAC.

    "This is a great opportunity for supporters of the Right to Rise PAC to get to know one another and the team, to receive updates on the PAC's activities, and to provide ideas and feedback," reads a background sheet....

  9. Marco Rubio's finances have presented an opportunity — and a curse

    State Roundup

    WASHINGTON — Marco Rubio nearly quit politics.

    He was so broke in 2001 that just as he began his ascent in the Florida House, he and his wife had to move in with her mother. Rubio decided to leave Tallahassee and practice law full time.

    He got in his car to think and wound up at Church of the Little Flower in Coral Gables, where he had gotten married three years earlier. He knelt to pray. "Why had God allowed me to come so far only to let me fail?" he recounted in a 2012 memoir....

    As a Republican presidential candidate, 43-year-old Sen. Marco Rubio is portraying himself as someone who shares the struggles and aspirations of many Americans. It's not just a line when he talks about crushing college loans; he's lived it. He's felt the squeeze of a mortgage and providing for four children. [Getty Images]
  10. Marco Rubio's finances an opportunity -- and a curse

    Blog

    A preview of our Sunday profile of Marco Rubio's finances:

    Marco Rubio nearly quit politics.

    He was so broke in 2001 that just as he began his ascent in the Florida House, he and his wife had to move in with her mother. Rubio decided to leave Tallahassee and practice law full time.

    He got in his car to think and wound up at Church of the Little Flower in Coral Gables, where he had gotten married three years earlier. He knelt to pray. “Why had God allowed me to come so far only to let me fail?” he recounted in a 2012 memoir....

    Sen. Marco Rubio, Republican presidential candidate
  11. Rubio votes against Loretta Lynch; Nelson votes for her

    Blog

    The U.S. Senate just voted to confirm Loretta Lynch as the next U.S. Attorney General, ending a long battle that got hung up over President Obama's executive action on immigration.

    Sen. Marco Rubio voted with most Republicans against Lynch. Sen. Bill Nelson voted with Democrats in favor of her. She will be the first black woman to hold the job.

    Republicans held up Lynch over her contention that Obama's executive orders were legal....

  12. Jeb Bush calls Koch network 'important part of any coalition to win'

    Blog

    Jeb Bush is in New York today and was asked about the "Koch primary," the behind the scenes battle for the heart and money of the billionaire conservatives.

    “If I go beyond the consideration to be an active candidate, my hope is to garner as much support across the whole spectrum of the Republican party,” Bush told reporters.

    Bush is considered one of five candidates Charles and David Koch are looking to back. The others are Scott Walker, Ted Cruz Rand Paul and Marco Rubio. (Rubio today participated in a Koch-sponsored conference call aimed at killing reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank.)...

  13. Jeb Bush's Super PAC draws questions of legality

    Blog

    Jeb Bush's use of a Super PAC may violate campaign finance laws, argues Fred Wertheimer of Democracy 21 in an op/ed published Thursday by Reuters.

    Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush is preparing to push the role of the individual-candidate super PAC to new, brazen heights.

    The Bush campaign is reportedly planning to reverse the role of Bush’s campaign committee and the “independent” super PAC supporting him – so that the super PAC would essentially become Bush’s campaign committee....

  14. National poll: Rubio jumps to front of GOP field, runs best against Clinton

    Blog

    Marco Rubio leads the GOP field in a new national poll and runs best against Hillary Clinton, a big shot for his campaign that's just over a week into effect.

    Rubio takes 15 percent of the GOP primary vote, according to the Quinnipiac poll, with Jeb Bush earning 13 percent and Scott Walker 11 percent. No other candidate tops 9 percent and 14 percent remain undecided....

  15. Gov. Scott skips Obama meeting

    Blog

    Gov. Rick Scott declined an official White House invitation to meet President Obama in Miami before an event in the Everglades.

    “I can confirm to you that he was invited to meet us upon arrival in Miami," spokesman Eric Schultz told reporters on the flight from Washington. He "characterized the invitation as standard procedure for presidential visits to a state," according to a press pool report. ...