Steve Bousquet, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

Steve Bousquet

Steve Bousquet is the Tampa Bay Times' Tallahassee bureau chief. He joined the Times in 2001 after 17 years at the Miami Herald, where he held a variety of positions including Tallahassee bureau chief, and he previously was a reporter at TV stations in Miami and Providence, R.I. He has a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Rhode Island and a master's in history from Florida State University.

Bousquet was a contributor to two editions of The Almanac of Florida Politics and to The Miami Herald Report: Democracy Held Hostage, an account of the 2000 presidential recount in Florida.

Phone: (850) 224-7263

Email: sbousquet@tampabay.com

Twitter: @SteveBousquet

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  1. U.S. Justice Department watching for voting irregularities in Florida

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — The U.S. Department of Justice is keeping a watchful eye on Florida for possible voting rights abuses in the last days of a close, hard-fought battle between Gov. Rick Scott and Charlie Crist.

    Tampa Bay's top federal prosecutor on Wednesday urged voters to report suspected cases of fraud or voting rights abuses.

    U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III said he has designated Assistant U.S. Attorney Bob Mosakowski to be a district election officer, chiefly responsible for investigating complaints. Mosakowski can be reached at (813) 274-6129. The Voting Section of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division can be reached toll-free at 1-800-253-3931....

  2. U.S. attorney in Tampa soliciting complaints of voting problems

    Blog

    The U.S. Department of Justice says it will be on the lookout for voting irregularities in Florida and is publicizing a Tampa telephone line so people who suspect voting rights abuses can report it to federal prosecutors.

    In Tampa, U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III issued a statement in which he said, "Every citizen should be free to vote without interference and to have his or her vote count, without the fear that it will be stolen because of fraud. The Department of Justice will act promptly and aggressively to protect the integrity of the voting process." Bentley said public complaints should be reported to Assistant U.S. Attorney Bob Mosakowski at 813-274-6129....

  3. High alert: 'Lawyering up' in case Scott-Crist race too close to call

    Blog

    The race for governor between Rick Scott and Charlie Crist is so close that it raises the mathematical possibility of a recount -- something neither side wants, not to mention the nearly 12 million voters in Florida. But leaving nothing to chance, both the Republicans and Democrats are mobilizing legal teams, and in some cases entire law firms, to deal with the possibility of a machine recount, manual recount, contested ballots and all the rest....

  4. The Buzz: Three-time loss would make history books

    State Roundup

    Charlie Crist is courting political history in next week's election.

    If he wins, he'll be the first governor of Florida elected as both a Republican and a Democrat, and only the sixth in the United States since 1900.

    If he loses, Crist could be on his way to another kind of history. Losing to Gov. Rick Scott would make Crist a three-time loser in statewide politics (he lost U.S. Senate bids in 1998 and 2010). The third strike, or "negative hat trick," has cut short the careers of a number of big-name Florida politicians, and history suggests that a loss for Crist will do the same to him....

  5. Rick Scott, Charlie Crist ready to lawyer up if Florida recount needed (w/video)

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — It's the nightmare scenario nobody wants to discuss: an election night result for Florida governor that's so close it demands a recount.

    "Oh, no, the R-word," said Pasco County Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley. "It's going to be a close one. We're ready."

    It's Florida. Anything can happen.

    With polls showing Gov. Rick Scott and Charlie Crist in a virtual deadlock, both sides are making plans in case of a stalemate next week. Republicans and Democrats would mobilize armies of lawyers in a frantic search for ballots, triggering memories of the agonizing and chaotic five-week Florida recount that followed the 2000 presidential election....

    Republican Gov. Rick Scott
  6. Crist blocked TV reporter from taking pictures of campaign plane

    Blog

    In the race for governor of Florida, transparency takes another hit.

    Over the weekend, Democrat Charlie Crist did a campaign fly-around to Jacksonville, Sanford and Miami on Saturday. The only reporter invited aboard, Troy Kinsey of Bay News 9, found out after he got on board that pictures of the private plane were off limits.

    The Republican Party of Florida is circulating Kinsey's standup report from Jacksonville in which the reporter notes that Crist hammers Scott for traveling across the state in a "private jet," and that " ... the image of Crist flying private, even for one day, could undercut that message." (Reporters have never been allowed on Scott's private jet)....

  7. N.Y. Times/CBS News poll: Rick Scott 46%, Charlie Crist 45%

    Blog

    A poll by the New York Times/CBS News/YouGov has Gov. Rick Scott holding a 1 percentage point lead over Charlie Crist, 46 percent to 45 percent.

    The poll was conducted the week of Oct. 16-23 with a margin of error of 2 percentage points. Libertarian candidate Adrian Wyllie was not included in the survey.   

    Scott had leads of 5, 5 and 4 points in three previous NYT/CBS/YouGov battleground tracking polls. In the most recent survey, the media organizations report the following:...

  8. Bousquet column: On Gov. Rick Scott's campaign bus, every minute counts

    State Roundup

    Charlie Crist has his fan, and Rick Scott has his timer.

    Throughout nearly four years as governor, Scott has seemed to view the news media as an annoyance.

    He stopped doing extended news conferences long ago. He rarely calls on newspaper editorial boards. He often ends events with three-minute "gaggles" that offer the veneer of accessibility and mostly allow him to restate talking points....

    Florida Gov. Rick Scott's campaign bus arrives at the Jacaranda Italian Restaurant and Pizzeria for an event, Sunday in Plantation. [AP photo]
  9. Crist courts history but political oblivion, too, with 'three strikes'

    Blog

    Charlie Crist is courting political history in next week's election.

    If he wins, he'll be the first governor of Florida elected as both a Republican and a Democrat, and only the sixth in the U.S. since 1900.

    If he loses, Crist could be on his way to another kind of history. Losing to Gov. Rick Scott would make Crist a three-time loser in statewide politics (he lost U.S. Senate bids in 1998 and 2010). The third strike or "negative hat trick" has cut short the careers of a number of big-name Florida politicians, and history suggests that a loss for Crist will do the same to him....

  10. Rich man, poor man: On TV, Scott tries to undercut Crist populism

    Blog

    In his four years as governor, Rick Scott has rarely sat for lengthy interviews. His campaign has declined repeated requests from Tallahassee reporters and from most Florida editorial boards. But with time running out and polls showing a neck-and-neck race with Charlie Crist, Scott has begun finding a lot of time for free media to augment a saturation TV ad campaign.

    Scott lately has appeared on CNN's "The Situation Room" with Wolf Blitzer; agreed to a lengthy one-on-one with WFOR's Jim DeFede, who got Scott to confirm that he will spend personal money on his re-election effort; and on "This Week in South Florida," where Scott answered questions from WPLG reporters Glenna Milberg and Michael Putney. In the WPLG interview, broadcast Sunday, Milberg noted that Scott's campaign had "a timer set at 12 minutes."...

  11. By the numbers: Florida's pool of voters approaches 12 million

    Blog

    Florida's ever-expanding pool of eligible voters for the election is now close to 12 million people: 11,931,533, to be exact. That's the number as of the Oct. 6 book closing.

    A few other statistics from the Florida voter file:

    * Democrats outnumber Republicans statewide by 455,946, and voters of no party affiliation continue to grow at a much faster rate than either of the two major parties. NPA voters number nearly 2.8 million and represent 23.2 percent of all voters....

  12. Election supervisors are reminded to 'expect the unexpected'

    Blog

    Gov. Rick Scott's chief elections official gave a pep talk to county election supervisors Thursday in which he reminded them to "expect the unexpected" in the upcoming election. Secretary of State Ken Detzner and his staff even spoke the word no one wanted to hear, the dreaded R-word: Recount.

    Recent polls show a dead even race between Gov. Rick Scott and Charlie Crist. Could it actually be that close? Yes....

  13. In final debate, Rick Scott and Charlie Crist clash bitterly (w/video)

    State Roundup

    JACKSONVILLE — In a fast-paced final debate Tuesday, Republican Gov. Rick Scott and Democrat Charlie Crist displayed their mutual contempt to a national TV audience in the home stretch of the costliest and meanest campaign in the country.

    For a live hour on CNN and TV stations across Florida, Scott and Crist disagreed, distorted each other's record and exchanged insults. In a neck-and-neck race, both men are fiercely trying to gain any tactical advantage with voters — only a small percentage of whom remain undecided....

    Charlie Crist, left, and Gov. Rick Scott shake hands before the debate Tuesday in Jacksonville. It was downhill from there.
  14. CNN is 'network of no' in final debate for governor of Florida

    Blog

    In CNN's amateurish early days as a 24-hour cable news outlet, critics called it the "Chicken Noodle Network." CNN has come a long way, but for tonight's final debate in the Florida governor's race, those three letters might as well stand for "Can't. No. Nope."

    Political debates in Florida are a big deal, especially in a neck-and-neck race like this one between Gov. Rick Scott and Charlie Crist, and CNN is the sponsor of a live one-hour faceoff at 7 p.m. at WJXT in Jacksonville. The network is determined to protect its place as the exclusive host....

  15. Early voting opens in Pinellas as both parties ramp up get-out-the-vote efforts

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — Early voting got under way in 30 counties across Florida on Monday, including Pinellas, Miami-Dade and Broward, as both parties ramped up their get-out-the-vote efforts in the final two weeks of the race for governor.

    Nearly 900,000 people have already returned mail-in ballots, and early-voting sites are open for up to 14 days in some counties, and at more sites, than in past years. ...

    Florida Gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist examines a portable hand fan given to him before he voted early Monday in St. Petersburg. "It's nice to be cool." he said. [SCOTT KEELER   |   TIimes]