The first Florida Insider Poll of 2018 focused on the landscape in Tallahassee heading toward a legislative session amid sexual misconduct scandals, looming primary elections, and more. We surveyed more than 170 savvy politicos with these questions:
**Who is the most powerful figure in Tallahassee today?
**How would you grade Gov. Scott's dealing with the Legislature over the past seven years?
**What will be the most difficult issue facing the Legislature this year?
**What is an issue the Legislature should take up this year but won't?
**How does Sen. Jack Latvala's absence change the power dynamic in the Senate and in the Legislature at large?
**Is sexual harassment common in the legislative process?
**Is Tallahassee an especially difficult place for women to work, more so than most professions?
You can read about the findings here.
Often, though, the comments are even more interesting. We allow anonymity to encourage honesty.
We joke that the Florida Legislature is like high school except with more sex and alcohol. Seriously, there is certainly the need for reform. The current situation though unfortunate, should help to establish more professional behavior in the future.
The events leading into the 2018 legislative session has created a lot of uncertainty and apprehension.
I hope my lobbyists colleagues, the Capitol Press Corps, or any other interested parties do not assume the root cause of sexual harassment and sexual misconduct has been dissolved because Senator Latvala resigned. It's deeper and until a real effort (versus an on the surface effort) is made to purge the halls and the Capitol of this behavior, it will remain dormant until the articles cease. There are others and many fully are aware of who they are.
Professional women will not be taken seriously.
I don't know how to answer the above question, I'd never heard harassment problems, but certainly the rumors of who was sleeping with who. Hopefully everything that has come to light will eliminate any issues with harassment and those guilty of it will face the consequences.
Currently a Pinellas County has only one elected woman in Tallahassee. Remember the great Pinellas women from the past. Elect more women. Bring back Betty Easley, Mary Grizzel, Elaine Gordon etc. that would help.
I think most work places (not just the state capitol) are difficult for women to work in without being harassed. This new attention to harassment hopefully will change the working culture for the better.
I don't know.
Tallahassee, an alpha male dominated place (or at least of place of largely men who think of themselves as alphas), is definitely rife with sexual harassment. It was ingrained in the culture, though now most of the men are afraid and watching themselves given the talk of the times. Many young women have unfortunately played the game to get ahead, and made it more difficult for the ones who didn't. In other news, we will see the cabinet level fields narrow and the front runners will emerge. On the Republican side it looks increasingly like a battle between Putnam and Corcoran but DeSantis is likely going to upend that whole dynamic real soon. And the Republican Party primary electorate still favors the "outsider" candidates who can get attention. The question is whether DeSantis (Who doesn't project himself in the outsider mode in his speeches) can channel that mood of the electorate.
Worse in Senate than House.
To be honest, the legislative session is really not that important during the Scott years. He has focused on the economy, everyone in the legislature for the most part supports his efforts there. He stayed away from silly Tallahassee dramas and created his own political atmosphere where he thrives and the state has thrived. The members of the legislature are sadly too focused on giving gifts to, and receiving gifts from cronies to address any real policy issues. That is why Desantis has a much better shot at being the candidate of the Trump voter than anyone currently in the Tallahassee swamp. Cc: Richard Corcoran.
The collapse of the Senate will leave Corcoran and the comparatively more extremist House with a freer hand in budgeting, setting up conflicts with Scott. Scott will want to claim big education funding, but Corcoran will refuse to let him increase local property taxes to get the money. Corcoran may be willing to anger some special interests that Scott hopes to placate — utilities, insurers — and may be unwilling to provide the money for pay raises Scott will want for correctional officers, state troopers, state employees and others.
Sexual harassment has been going on for decades in Tallahassee. And it happens on both sides of the aisle and with both genders. Ask people from the 1990s about then-senator K Harris….
The answer to the last two questions I think is changing and very different (for the better) after the shake up events of the last year.
Getting a budget is always difficult. With 2 of 3 main players (Scott, Corcoran) likely running for higher office, it's really tough. Look for Corcoran to publicly carve up Scott's irresponsible spending plan to score points. Negron is along for the ride and with Latvala gone, Senate is almost irrelevant.
"It would be a welcome change for FL legislators to buck the establisment and lobbyists and work on behalf of their constituents and future generations of Floridians; especially to reverse the damage done in education by Common Core and the so called FL "standards."
Legislators need to break up the forced monopoly of inadequate/inferior Pearson Publising curriculum (from the U. K.) and stop forcing students to learn and test electronically so they can't data mine and sell their private personal information.
Education in FL needs to return to the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic, learning accurate American History, reading of classic literature and learning geography. Education is one of the most critical issues facing our state. The issue is not complex. Unfortunately, the current leadership in Tallahassee lacks the fortitude and will to get the job done for Florida's students."
More so than most. Politics is of course the entertainment industry for less attractive people, so while Tallahassee may not be Hollywood or New York, state capital cities are notorious for their culture and have been for many many years.
The Tampa Bay Times reported early last year that a child in Florida is shot on average every 17 hours and yet our state leaders won't touch this issue. For many, the fear of electoral consequences outweighs the fear of seeing 3,200 more Florida children killed or injured by firearms this year.
The public has the right to know about other sexual harassment issues involving legislators with lobbyists or staff
Latvala's resignation makes an already strong Corcoran who is the dominant figure in Tallahassee even stronger. He's running the ship this session.
I think this will be one of the quickest moving Session in recent memory, as in everyone except Corcoran will be trying to keep a lower than normal profile due to the harassment complaints. Corcoran is still a relative unknown outside Tallahassee, so it's in his interest to blow things up to create headlines, but most of the Legislature will want a quiet exit.
Women serving as professional staff to lawmakers should never be made to feel like concubines. This is the kind of arrogance that cost the Democrats power in the 90s proving how absolute power really does corrupt, absolutely.
The final question is loaded so I didn't answer it because everyone who has reached a level of success believe they did despite X (Being a woman, an older worker, having a single mother, or whatever). We all basically determine the answer to a question like this based on our own experiences rather that actual data. It's fair to say that in our society, sexual harassment exists and it likely exists by both sexes against both sexes because people (not men or women) in power tend to believe that the rules do not apply to them.
Rachel Perrin Rogers- At the least, she makes elected officials and lobbyists think twice before acting inappropriately. At the most, she may be the catalyst to help change the way that status quo business is done in the capitol.
I am hopeful the new year will allow the legislative process to begin with a clean slate, free of controversy and dissention. I am not holding my breath, though.
We appear to be witnessing a change in state politics with Democrats experiencing a revival
Sexually harassment may be less prevalent than in the past in Tallahassee but awareness and willingness to confront it are much greater.
Its not fair, but being a male, I wouldn't have a closed door meeting along with a female in this environment. Sorry, not sorry!
The media needs to report on former Rep. and current XXXXXXXXXXX "point system" for sexual conquests. This was the most overt and cavalier example of the Tallahassee "boys club" attitude towards women. The fact that this has not been reported on to date makes the hope for change in Tallahassee (and D.C.) simply that, hope.
Cities and counties have a lot at stake in the 2018 Legislative Session. Though the Florida Constitution protects the important principle of home rule, which recognizes that localities are often best positioned to address their own needs, Speaker Corcoran and House allies seek to diminish local government. Mayors, county commissioners, city councilors and commissioners, and other municipal officials across Florida must band together and work closely with the Senate and Governor to thwart the anti-home rule agenda.
Many professions have issues of sexual harassment. I once asked a woman who has worked for Latino media for decades and asked why not one woman has said anything. They are daily asked to open their shirts and wear shorter skirts. She said that hardly anyone would be left in management. The issue is not only with women, but heterosexual men have been sexually harassed by gay management who say they will move up if they participate in sexual acts. The issue is deeper than we wish to admit. In addition, I am sure there are more stories. This sexual harassment accusations has also created a going back to professionals talking business during business hours vs. drinks and dinner and opening the door for it to lead to other things.
Florida politics, from the legislature to elections, is a boys club. Women are not welcome to participate in the late night cigar parties, or allowed to be part of the inner circle in leadership.Women do not get to be part of the conversation. In a profession where information and relationships determine your status and access, women are outsiders and thus deprived of those personal relationships and the information that comes with them. Unfortunately, the sexual harassment scandal has only made it worse. Where the door has always been shut, it is now bolted, barred, and guarded.
It is going to be a very interesting session full of more accusations, mistrust and finger pointing.
It's unfortunate some women have used their sexuality to achieve their goals and objectives.
This will likely be the most boring Session outside of the halls of Capitol in recent memory.
The sexual harassment scandal will hang heavy over Tallahassee during session. Many are changing their ways and hoping no one has photos!
Pay for play, conflicts of interest and corruption are more widespread than sexual harassment in Florida's capital. Power and greed are the root causes for good people to act badly.
Corcoran will have a better opportunity to get his way this year with Latvala gone. However, with both he and Scott looking to run for higher office neither want to do anything that will force the extension of session. With that said if DeSantis runs for the GOP nomination for Governor there is a good chance Corcoran doesn't. He knows without the support from the far right he can't compete with Putnam. And he loses that support to GOP candidate DeSantis.
Tallahassee has a highly educated work force due to the presence of three universities (FSU, FAMU and TCC). In addition, working for either the universities or the state often requires advanced degrees. The ability to address another's advances with the words they are "unwelcome and unwanted" is standard training for all state employees in anti-sexual harassment courses. If this fails then there is a chain of command, the human resources department and the department inspector general's office. In the Legislature, where egos are strong and inflated, there is greater likelihood of undisclosed sexual harassment because the state agency departmental processes are lacking.
There needs to be more professionalism brought to the process and mostly so within the socializing. Also, since the majority of the legislature claims to be conservative, they should maintain those values as well as being morally fit. The philandering amongst married individuals seems to be amped up during the Session and committee weeks.
"Picked House Speaker Corcoran as the most powerful person in Tallahassee but that's not meant to be a compliment. He is a bully, a grandstander and because his wife is involved in a charter school he is hell bent on destroying our public education system in Florida.
This show of Governor Scott wanting to throw a bone at everyone by spending a tad more happens on every election cycle and voters should remember. Remember the "I'm for the expansion of Obamacare" just before the last election?
Don't overlook the "Trump Effect" that will play, depending on what district you live, in every election this year…up and down the ballot., and that's what will save Sen Bill Nelson from almost certain defeat against Gov Scott because of Scott's bromance with the Donald, the Donald's horrendous poll numbers and that unpopularity will overshadow the Legislature as well.
Sen Latvala will be missed, not for his gruff demeanor or the sexual harassment allegations, but because many, many times he was the sole Republican moderating force along with the Democratic minority preventing many bad things from happening to public education, labor and especially our environment. "
Tallahassee is the "Hollywood" of Florida with casting couches galore. When you put that much power in the hands of a very few people who are used to "having their way" with subordinates, you're bound to have problems. As a woman I have experienced "difficulties" in the work place, including court rooms, but nothing like the challenging moments I faced as a legislative staff member, and a lobbyist. It's a small circle which continues to keep "dirty little secrets." Thanks for asking.
Is Andrew Gillum still in the Gov race?
Can't wait to see Putnam, Corcoran, and Desantis beat the piss out of each other. I've got the popcorn ready.
Also, isn't this the month that Rick Scott sees the writing on the wall and decides to go back to Naples? "
It is so much easier to deal with the budget when there is no money. Republicans are always better at governing when they are the party of discipline. Harder is managing the process as a conservative when there is a surplus of money. When there is no money, the special interests are only looking to defend themselves. When there is money, everyone wants some. It will be interesting to see if Corcoran's budget position will be disciplined and if he can remain disciplined in terms of controlling the desire of the Senate to spend more in the face of Governor Scott's budget proposal. As for the culture, I have seen many women prove very successful in the process. There are always going to be legislators who are self-gratifying narcissists and act like children. Most, however, are good family people who treat people well. I hate that everyone gets painted with the same brush because some people are bad actors. Most people in the process are good, and trying to do their job effectively. And good for them.
If the Capitol were located in Orlando or South Florida, it would be no more difficult than most other professions. The question was wrong because it confuses location and profession. Legislators are normal human beings. Slightly more educated than the average Floridian, and, I believe, slightly more ethical. Certainly they know that the spotlight is on them more than the average person, and they need to be more careful. Take 160 people and give them powerful positions, and many will take advantage of people in lesser positions for sexual purposes. I believe that the % of Legislators who fool around is probably no more than the total percentage in the state, and the amount of sexual harassment, while substantial, is no more substantial than in most of the state. I believe that if the Capitol wasn't in such a secluded location, you'd see less than the statewide average.
The biggest problem now is that sexual harassment allegations will become a political tool, and there is no possible defense. If the mantra is that the woman must always be believed, and that all allegations merit the death penalty, whether the allegations are of child molestation or of creating an uncomfortable work environment, than we face a grim future."
Florida's tax structure is woefully inadequate to fund needed services demanded by the state's ever-growing population. Candidates for governor need to present very detailed plans that specifically outline realistic solutions to this pressing problem.
When will reporters stop reporting that Gwen Graham is having an "off day", and begin to realize that she/her campaign is just the same boring, vanilla, and weak "frontrunner" they always nominate….?
To quote Cam Newton on what to expect from Election Year 2018, "Welcome to the f***ing show."
It is always interesting in an election year how the governor and legislature like to spend more money. It doesn't matter whether the Dems or Republicans are in control. For some unfathomable reason, the tendency to spend always increases in election years.
Tallahassee as used in above descriptive representing the Florida legislature can be a difficult place to work. It is not unlike many other work environments that are hostile, difficult, challenging for women to be respected for their work impact/contribution without being demeaned or affronted.
Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Every legislator, even the least important is flattered and made to feel they will be Governor, it is no wonder they lose a sense of propriety.
Tallahassee is a cesspool and had been for years – its, sadly, just part of the culture. But it is also a microcosm of the world. Some people abuse their power and some of them do it sexually and some do it in other ways. About 100 years ago, S Ct Justice Louis Brandeis said that sunshine is the best disinfectant. He is still correct today and this is an ongoing societal process.
1: Rachel Perrin Rogers is my hero.
2: Please don't let Sen. Latvala's resignation be the end of the sexual harassment discussion.
3. There are more predators who work in the process. Will there be justice for the women (and men) they targeted?
Per your last question, yes because male legislators fall into the trappings of power mindset. Most aren't using that power for sex but many still do.
Tallahassee is a cesspool of individuals seeking to move up the political ladder by whatever means necessary. It's a shame because even though there are some principled leaders serving for the right reason, they are diluted into the sewage created by the wannabes begging for relevance and the bad actors grasping for power. Just one flush won't do, Tallahassee needs a courtesy flush as well.
The removal of Jack Latvala from the Legislature is one of the most positive things to happen in Tallahassee in a long time. The man is evil.
The big question is when will Rick Scott declare he is running for Senate.
Don't expect much from this year's Tallahassee Theater. Any genuine desire for a better Florida was significantly destroyed as the Senate rushed to judgment in destroying Latvala's career. Meanwhile, everyone else, except possibly Pres. Negron, is singularly focused on their own political next-step — not on what our state really needs or wants.
Sexual harassment is and unfortunately is always going to be a part of the culture of power, be it in Tallahassee, Washington, DC or Hollywood…but it's way more that power figures over subordinates, it also peer-to-peer…that's why private investigators have been hired and once-secret photographs being taken…alas, politics continues to be a blood sport and nefarious behavior will remain rampant…more so because Latvala resigned…had his case gone to a hearing and depositions/testimony taken, a lot more would have come out…Tallahassee can probably breathe a sigh of relief…no more shoes are going to drop – maybe…
"Sexual harassment is a very unfortunate occurrence in all walks of life, not just politics.
With Jack Latvala gone, more power will consolidate behind Senate leadership. Latvala was a master at carving out his own dominions. Even when he lost, he won. I do not believe that Senate leadership is going to miss him, though some in the House may."
Of course some women play it to have advantage over male counterparts
I only assume so, as I am male.
This problem is endemic in our society.
"It's hard to say if it's a harder place to work than others, but in a town where most are living a lifestyle beyond what their means would be in most other professions, often away from home, surrounded by alcohol, and on someone else's dime, the place is ripe for at its best, bad behavior, and at its worst, harassment and abuse of power.
In many ways Scott is like Trump, largely ceding policy decisions to the legislative branch. Because of his own ambitions, I doubt we will see Scott poke his head into anything that isn't carefully poll tested & wrapped in flags and apple pie. "
AND HERE'S WHAT PEOPLE SAID ABOUT THE POST-LATVALA POLITICAL DYNAMIC:
Gives less leverage to Democrats on many key issues.
It neutralizes the Senate further, yielding even more control to the House
House wins BIG
The senate will have a more policy-based agenda.
House Republicans will dominate
It gives the House more of an advantage in close out negotiations.
Those who are "clean" will embolden and those who are not (and have some sense of self awareness) should be mindful of the intense scrutiny.
More quickly consolidates galvano's influence.
More power to Corcoran
Too early to know for sure.
It shifts power to Negron's team and enhances the bargaining leverage of the House
Regardless of what anyone says, it definitely changes the dynamic because now the Galvano Presidency has officially begun one session early. His designated Appropriations Chair has assumed the reigns one session early, that'll definitely benefit him. One of his greatest allies is still the Majority Leader, that'll definitely benefit him. He's sponsoring the current President's Higher Ed priority and sponsoring the current Speaker's PreK-12 Ed priority, that'll definitely benefit him.
Joe Negron's power is in jeopardy as is the succession of Bill Galvano. There is no one strong in the Senate to balance out the House. It's clear the House will run over the Senate….again.
He held the center together and wasnt afraid of the house, can somebody else show that level of grit?
Opens up the process to new ideas
There will be less turmoil and more cooperation
Significantly. It will take the focus off of the Senate challenges. Better process.
For all of his warts Jack was smart and correct on many important issues. There is no one to take his place at this time. Without him there will be further curtailing of local power
His presence was a moderating factor so look for a more conservative swing.
No deal maker to fill the void on many issues
The Senate was ran over last year by the House when he was there, so I imagine it will continue this year too.
No real political counter to Negron anymore. No moderate voice.
Dramatically. Latvala was the only person in the to standup to the house on both bad policy and Budget issues
Gift to Senator negron
Vests more power in the President
It makes Corcoran even more powerful
The Senate will get played by the House even more than usual.
More power concentration in Sen Pres office
Lost a powerful voice of moderates
The legislature slides further to the dysfunctional right without Jack's voice of moderation. Say what you will about his approach to the fairer sex, his approach to politics was right down the middle as a consensus builder. That will be missed because everyone else is on the wings of their respective parties.
Sen Latvala was the member to ensure the integrity of the process was maintained. Who will enforce the rules are followed?
Richard Corcoran and the House will be more powerful
Since he was/is NOT the only inappropriate elected official.. perhaps this will begin a new era of appropriate behavior and civility.
A more conservative body
Negron is fully in control of the senate; that body will be much smoother and do what he wants.
Senate is even weaker at negotiation table now
business as usual
It will encourage members to speak their minds more
He knew how to build coalitions to push his bills or stop other legislation he didn't like. While he was a creepy, dirty, and disgusting man, he knew how to play the game.
Oh goodness. It's huge and makes the process more fair, less oppressive and more likely to be based on good policy and not the personal preference or passions of a tyrant. Legislatively speaking, "Ding-dong, ding-dong, the wicked ole witch is dead"
I think the House becomes even more powerful.
makes the Senate more dysfunctional and paralyzed
Corcoran and House now have even more power in the budget process.
Galvano team will have more clout. Less likely for budget blow up in dealing with House
Not too much.
It makes Corcoran and the House even stronger.
Shifts even more power to House
I am not sure
On face it provides more opportunity for Corcoran and his House agenda, as Negron and his leadership team are amazingly weakened by the loss of their nemesis. I do believe Rob Bradley will be an effective advocate for his region, but the Senate overall will not fare well without Latvala's craft in the waning days of the Session.
As we saw last year, even with the heavy hand of Latvala, the House had a strategic advantage. I imagine this year that will be even more evident.
Lessens the drama, which he thrived on
Senate less moderating influence
Love him or hate him, Sen. Latvala has been one of the craftiest legislators in recent memory. The Senate got, if not more predictable, at least less unpredictable with his departure.
Yes, and hopefully for the better.
Diffuses power, undermining the Democrats (now at 16) and gives the House the upper hand in almost any fight.
Leaves a balance void
Latvala helped the Senate stay more moderate, which is a big contrast to the extreme-right views of the House. I see everyone bending even more to Richard Corcoran's will, without Latvala there.
Call me a contrarian, but Latvala, and the Senate, got played last Session by Corcoran, so I'm not sure the Senate lost out by a last minute change in Appropriations.
Consolidates power among Negron and Simpson- allows the Republican Senate to have more cohesive power structure.
Both shift to the right without any check from the moderate wing.
Less ego-driven policy-first approach should make negotiations easier between the chambers.
Yet to be determined. There are those who think they are filling the power vacuum and those who are filling it.
should be a nicer place
Shifts policies rightward. Also, less power for the Senate.
Opens the door for non-relevant nation right wing agenda items to move and potentially pass through the process. Latvala was the gate keeper to garbage policy.
One creep gone, and hopefully sends a message to others not to treat people that way
In the Senate, a more moderate Republican agenda may be in peril in Jack's absence. In the legislature as a whole, it may mean the House may run roughshod over the Senate without a skilled negotiator like Jack.
It will likely reduce the power of any single legislator for a while, and male legislators will have to be more cognizant of their behavior toward women
Hopefully signals progress toward ending a toxic culture of harassment, bullying, and corruption.
Spreads out authority and hastens transfer of authority to next presiding officers
Completely changes the landscape.
Shifts power to Corcoran
The senate becomes less of a check on the extremist right-wing bills that emanate from the House.
Less common sense and balance
It strengthens Corcoran. He will get just about everything he wants, and he will want a lot to boost his gubernatorial chances. Scott, with his own election prospects involved, won't the an obstacle and the House steamrolls the Senate.
Won't miss a beat – Rob Bradley fills the void and vaults into the top ring of power brokers!
A massive sigh of relief. Now, they're all waiting for Jack to leak their own affairs to Peter.
For the unions, it hurts a lot as Latvala was a moderating force for many of their issue.
On the surface, it strengthens House Speaker Corcoran by removing one of his chief rivals. But it also provides an opportunity for new Senate leadership. Rob Bradley is an exceptionally talented legislator who has both substance and street smarts. Latvala's departure elevated him not only to the role of Appropriations Chair but also as the legislator most likely and able to match wits with Corcoran.
I think everyone is very vigilant of who will expose their past errors.
Jack Latvala being gone will make the process move more smoothly. Jack was notorious for flexing his muscle just because he could. Without him there, I think more legislation will pass the Senate floor.
Significant as the Senate is now weakened and power shifts to the House
Less drama. Not just the scandal, but without the schoolyard bully around, the stress level should be lower. Not low, just a little more Zen-like than usual.
Enhances Joe negron
His absence leaves a void a representation and knowledge regarding budgeting.
Empowers Galvano, Corcoran and Negron.
Life goes on
Makes the Senate weaker in relation to the House
His exit will further consolidate power in leadership, and give newfound power to female members of the Legislature.
Hopefully the Senate will return to a more congenial body.
it will be less likely for extreme conservative policies to be tempered or balanced
He's been a moderating influence on the right wing of the GOP on numerous issues, including the environment, so Richard Corcoran will have a clearer field to ram through his agenda.
Will help bring more comradarie and cooperation, less confrontation among Republican leaders
Yes but that dynamic is still evolving.
Corcoran needs a new enemy
Increases Corcoran's influence big time.
More conservative swing to hard-core right.
Shifts the legislature further to the extreme right
Some issues and organizations are going to ran over, backed up on, and ran over again. Latvala was instrumental in keeping the monied lobbyists from taking complete control of issues.
Drastically. Latvala was a deal maker and a deal breaker. He lumbered large (figuratively and literally) over the process. He was willing to blow up a deal if he thought a better one could be negotiated and willing to buck leadership in the process. Will any other Republican step up to the plate or be 1/5th the man Latvala was in deal negotiations remains to be seen. Bottom line, with Latvala gone I don't see how the Senate is relative at all. Basically Negron is now Corcoran's puppet whether he wants to believe it or not.
Legislature will lean more conservative
"Moderates and Labor Unions will lose support in the Senate.
The "Jack"'s absence will remove a voice of moderation from the GOP
Helps Senate President and the process
Not much, this is Old news now…move on, like most have. We've had a month of hear about how nasty Latvala is. Don't give him, or anyone that is involved in sexual harassment, any more attention unless we are calling them out or actually making them have consequences for their actions.
Gives Speaker Corcoran the edge. He will loom large in the Senate and in the process, generally.
I think it will weaken the centrists and environmental community, and give Corcoran more ability to hurt local governments.
Less than most think. Once he lost the race for Senate President his power has seemed to slowly drift away – as have the number of members he had control over
"The Senate becomes more conservative, quite sadly places less emphasis on protecting the environment as more institutional power shifts rightward to the House and Richard Corcoran, the powerful Speaker.
Initial thought is dramatically, but we might all be surprised by how it doesn't at all.
Many special interests bet heavily on him as Approps Chair (not necessarilky his run for Gov.), and it will be interesting to see how his donors gave in the pre-session $ scramble
When you remove the chair of the most powerful committee in the Senate who also happens to be a gubernatorial candidate, it can't help but have a profound change. The question is: Will the new chair be independent and aggressive, or will they simply carry out the wishes of the Senate president.
Makes others nervous for same but unnamed behavior?
Lobbyists starting from scratch. Instead of money being raised for a future statewide bid, it's more organic (and less quid-pro-quo) in the process.
The unions and the state pension lost their biggest champion.
Not a whole lot because his behavior – both his abuse of power sexually with women and his typical bullying behavior with EVERYONE else – had been known for decades. A brilliant legislative leader and political mind, but never the nicest guy in the room, tho often the smartest. However, given the national coverage of the bigger issue of the sexual abuse of power, everyone is going to be more aware and careful.
It increases awareness and puts people on edge (Good.) Ultimately, male members may just turn to male lobbyists and cut women out of the process (Bad.) This is an extraordinary opportunity for women on both sides of the aisle to come together and advocate for change in ALL industries, not just the Capitol.
It's a reset for both.
Negron wouldn't unleash Jack to take on the House, so no change.
A shift towards a more Conservative Senate
He was a master at negotiating and closing deals so it will be illuminating to see which lawmakers fill the power vacuum created by his absence.
Conservative republicans in the senate will have more influence.
My first reaction is good riddance to a bully and a scumbag.
In a very positive way. He was a bully who obstructed progress
Will allow Negron to consolidate some additional power and leverage
Major shift in favor of the House
Absent his experience, political skills and tenacity the Senate will suffer tremendously. Corcoran will have a much easier time setting — and ultimately controlling — the agenda.
It changes it significantly because he was entering his last session and he's always been a power player…the only one who could bring some moderate Repub's to the Dem's to pass moderating legislation…the gaping hole though will be filled quickly because that what politicians do best – fill a vacuum…plus Latvala was a master negotiator, perhaps not as good as Corcoran has become however…Corcoran will dominate the session once again, and more importantly he's taught future House speakers how to negotiate and deal with the upper chamber…Sen. Galvano and Rep. Oliva will emerge as the next centers-of-power and they'll exert their influence…Oliva will unsurprisingly maintain much of the agenda that Corcoran created as they're political soulmates and see the workd through a unified vision…
Women are safer
It consolidates more power behind Senate leadership.
The ability to conduct transactional deals has diminished greatly.
Gives Nehron more leverage
Loss of a Moderate Voice
Moves it even further to the right
Less instutional memory & expertise
Yes, but not for long
Without the bully, the power vacuum will fill quickly, everyone can be replaced.
Creates a vacuum
Negron and Simpson enabled – less bullying
A truly bipartisan bloc will not exist in the Senate. Partisan politics will drive session.
Strengthens the hand of hardline conservatives
Not at all
Further decentralizes power. Jack's coalition, which includes Dems, now largely are free agents. If Braynon & Gibson can hold their caucus together, they will wield tremendous power. But that's a big if.
There is a void that will be filled
At least as interesting are the comments, included below.