This just in from Gov. Rick Scott's office. Flags ordered to half-staff at all Florida government buildings "until sunset on the date of internment" in honor of former Gov. Reubin Askew, who died early this morning. Here's the memorandum:
Early this morning, Thursday, March 13, 2014, Governor Reubin O’Donovan Askew passed away. Governor Askew was the 37th Governor of Florida, and the first Governor to be elected to a second, successive four-year term in Florida history. He began his service to our country in 1946 when he enlisted in the United States Army. After discharging as a sergeant in 1948, he once again served our country as a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force during the Korean War....
Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano points out in his latest column why Tuesday's special election in Congressional District 13 is so important for Pinellas voters. An excerpt:
The special election featuring David Jolly and Alex Sink is expected to be close, and by itself that is a drastic change from what voters around here are accustomed to seeing....
If you haven't noticed, PolitiFact Florida has been in overdrive fact-checking Pinellas' Congressional District 13 special election.
The race to fill the late U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young's open House seat has become a national campaign, thanks to outside money from both parties and special interest groups. Get ready for Election Day on Tuesday with this wrapup of the biggest claims concerning the candidates and analyis of how accurately issues have been presented in the special election....
Asked what president has done for Alex Sink, WH press sec says he 'supports Democratic candidates across the country'03/10/14 Blog
This is an excerpt from today's press briefing at the White House. Press Secretary Jay Carney is answering the questions.
Q One more domestic politics question quickly. What has the President done for Alex Sink?
MR. CARNEY: Well, the President supports Democratic candidates across the country. The President, as you know, has been engaged in an effort and will continue to be engaged in an effort to support the Democratic National Committee, the DS -- the senatorial committee and the congressional committee. So I’m not sure I understand the question....
Hillsborough Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer reminds his voters that CD 13 race is not theirs to vote in03/10/14 Blog
Hillsborough Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer has a message for voters. The special election for Congressional District 13 is only for Pinellas voters, and only certain ones at that. That note is on the Hillsborough elections website and here's what Latimer tweeted on Sunday....
Texas Gov. Rick Perry addressed CPAC today with an energizing speech that had the crowd fired up. About 3:40 into this video, Gov. Perry takes aim at former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, the likely November opponent of his would-be BFF, current Gov. Rick Scott.
"And under Rick Scott, Florida's unemployment rate has dropped for three straight years, when just four years ago, four years ago, his predecessor presided over the loss of more than 800,000 jobs and now that guy wants his job back. And with a record like that, appropriately, he is running this time to seek it as a Democrat."...
Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist is scheduled to speak Saturday at the annual Gridiron Club dinner in Washington, D.C.
The former Republican-turned-Independent-now Democrat will represent the Democrats and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz will represent the Republicans.
We hear there won't be cameras at the prestigious white tie event this year, but Buzz will seek to bring you coverage....
From our friends at the News Service of Florida:
Pointing to a need to make sure public officials are sober when they make policy decisions, a House Republican filed a bill this week that would require drug testing for elected officeholders and judges. The bill (HB 1435), filed by Rep. Dane Eagle, R-Cape Coral, comes after controversies and legal battles about attempts to require drug testing of state employees and recipients of public assistance. Eagle's proposal calls for testing of people elected to federal, state and local offices, along with Florida Supreme Court justices, appeals-court judges and local judges. Officials who refuse to take the tests would be required to resign. Positive results would be sent to the state Commission on Ethics, which would refer public officials to employee-assistance programs. The bill says its intent is to "ensure that public officers are sober as they undertake their responsibility to make policy decisions that affect the health, safety and welfare of the citizens they represent."...
Gov. Rick Scott delivers his 2014 State of the State address at 11 a.m. today in the Florida House chamber.
Locally in Tampa Bay, you can watch it on Bay News 9, WEDU, WEDU+ (Brighthouse Ch. 605, Verizon Ch. 476) and the Florida Channel. Listen to it live on WUSF-89.7 FM.
Also it will be live-streamed at thefloridachannel.org.
• Get the latest news here at tampabay.com/buzz....
Our friends at the Miami Herald have the scoop on Miami announcing it will pursue a bid for the 2016 Democratic National Convention. We remember how much fun the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa was, so go, Miami! Here's an excerpt:
Miami announced on Friday it would pursue the Democratic National Convention in 2016, an event expected to require double the organizing costs of what the region expected to raise to put on the Super Bowl....
The final debate in the Congressional District 13 special election airs tonight at 8:30 p.m. on WEDU PBS. Republican David Jolly, Democrat Alex Sink and Libertarian Lucas Overby will face off for the third time ahead of the March 11 election.
The 30-minute debate is moderated by Florida This Week host Rob Lorei. It will air again Sunday at 12:30 p.m. and be available next week online at wedu.org....
With anti-government protests and violence rising in Venezuela, a couple hundred people took the streets in Tampa on Saturday to show solidarity, while a much larger crowd gathered in Doral.
This crowd was seen Saturday afternoon at the east side of Dale Mabry just south of Raymond James stadium. Many carried signs -- "free Venezuela" -- and flags.
Florida has a largest population of Venezuelan-born residents in the country and thousands joined in protest in Doral on Saturday. "Waving Venezuelan flags and carrying signs seeking help for their homeland, many gathered at J.C. Bermudez Park in Doral blamed President Nicolás Maduro for high crime, food shortages and lack of freedom -- among other issues. They also called on the international community to take action," the Miami Herald reported....
Tampa Bay Times columnist John Romano makes a fierce case to readers and to Fox News with today's column. An excerpt:
More than anything, Ms. Bondi is a team player. There is no Republican cause she will not champion. There is no harebrained, unconstitutional, hard-hearted scheme proposed by Gov. Rick Scott that she will not defend. There is no back she won't scratch, and no corporate bigwig she won't court. She was once so adamant about holding a fundraiser she canceled … well, I've gone on long enough....
We're a little late posting these tweets from Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday, but after visiting International Plaza ourselves on Saturday (along with everyone in Tampa), they seem relevant. Scott got some shopping in for the first lady's birthday next week.