Steve Contorno, Political Editor

Steve Contorno

Political Editor

My title is "Political Editor" but really I write about power (the people who have it and those who want it) and influence (the good kind and the less altruistic). There's never a shortage of stories about either in Florida. The best ones hold your elected leaders accountable and expose the unelected powers pulling the levers. That's what I'm focused on. I started out covering politics in my home state of Illinois, with stints in Wisconsin, Virginia and Washington, D.C., before settling in Florida in 2015. I'll take the heat over snow any day. If I'm not working, I'm hunting for Chicago sports in St. Pete bars, vegan eats or my next book. I run on your tips and black coffee.

Margaret Good, Democrat who won Florida House seat in Trump territory, now running for Congress

State House Rep.-elect Margaret Good, right, celebrates her election victory with House Democratic Leader Janet Cruz, D-Tampa, on Tuesday at the Capitol in Tallahassee. (Steve Bousquet  |  Times)
She’s challenging seven-turn Republican incumbent Vern Buchanan in Sarasota-based congressional district

A new Florida politics newsletter is coming next week. Here’s what to expect.

Florida's 46th Governor Ron DeSantis was sworn in Tuesday, January 8, 2019 in front of Florida's Old Capitol in Tallahassee. SCOTT KEELER  |   Times
Each week, the Tampa Bay Times politics team will walk you through the biggest stories in Florida.

Jane Castor to LGBTQ Democrats: ’We can legislate the laws but we can’t legislate attitudes’

Tampa Mayor Jane Castor speaks at the LGBTA Democratic Caucus Summer Conference breakfast on Saturday, July 20, 2019 at Grand Hyatt in Tampa.  ALLIE GOULDING   |   Times
Tampa’s new mayor addressed a statewide Democratic audience for the first time since her April election.

Remembering Pulse: DeSantis left out LGBTQ in proclamation. Records show another version existed.

LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times McKenna Post waves a rainbow flag while standing with her mother, Randa Black, at a vigil at Lake Eola honoring the 49 lives lost exactly one year earlier in a mass shooting inside Pulse, a gay nightclub, in Orlando, Fla., on Monday, June 12, 2017. The event was part of
The governor’s office blamed a staffer for the confusion.

Andrew Gillum shifts campaign cash to a new nonprofit, blocking it from public view

Former Florida Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum speaks to supporters during a gathering at the Florida Democratic Party state conference, Friday, June 7, 2019, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
A nonprofit makes it easier to spend directly on voter registration, the Democrat’s spokesman said.