• The latest updates from top Florida progressive websites:

Kathryn Starkey seriously considering bid for Pasco County Commission

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Citing the need for experienced leadership in a county government depleted by job losses and retirements, really-good-person Kathryn Starkey tells me she is seriously considering running for the Pasco County Commission. Starkey had previously said she was not going to run, but now says positive changes in her life are providing her with the opportunity [...]

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Congratulations to Judge-to-be Tom Ramsberger

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The qualifying period to run for judge closed at noon today and congratulations are in order to Judge (well, not yet) Tom Ramsberger, who did not draw an opponent for the open Group 11 seat on the Sixth Judicial Circuit. That means Ramsberger will be invested as a Circuit Court judge in January of 2013. [...]

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Rene Flowers is disappointed…

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Congratulations to Rene Flowers for being the first local candidate of the 2012 election cycle to complain about her yard signs disappearing. On Facebook, Flowers whines: “I am so disappointed. Just when I thought there was hope for professionalism in campaigns..I was proven wrong. For those who took the signs and some you laid down [...]

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RNC seeks to turn Facebook into a political tool

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The RNC “is preparing to launch a new Facebook tool that lets users share news, talking points and the latest updates about the presidential campaign with their friends,” CNN reports. “Republicans using the application will be able do the work usually reserved for campaign offices simply by logging into Facebook from their personal computers… They can fill [...]

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Gov. Scott receives last batch of 2012 bills

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Gov. Rick Scott on Friday received the last round of bills from the 2012 Legislative session as a flurry of measures dealing with environmental l regulation, insurance and a host of open records measures made its way to his desk. The 40 measures represent the last of 238 general bills and 42 local bills that [...]

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Unions Always Side With The 99%, Right? Ummm…

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If Californians are wondering why our state failed to enact single payer health care..they might want to ask unions

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Jeb warns: Get ready for ‘most negative campaign ever’

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In the interview Bush predicts a tough race for candidate Mitt Romney and hopes that he will invite Marco Rubio to become his running mate. Bush said, “there will be so much negativity and so many personal attacks against Gov. Romney.  That’s already been telegraphed that that’s going to happen.  I think people are going [...]

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FourSquare will begin selling ad space

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Foursquare, the New York-based geolocation app and social network that recently claimed 20 million users worldwide, will launch a new “advertising platform” in mid-June, Advertising Age reports. The platform is expected to allow companies to buy localized ads targeted to user searches for establishments and goods, similar to how Google displays advertisements geared toward usersearch queries. Foursquare has [...]

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Six Pinellas judges will be re-elected without opposition, Andringa vs. McKyton to be decided in Augustd

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Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Deborah Clark said eight candidates completed their qualifying requirements for County Judge during this week’s qualifying period.  All candidates qualified by filing the required documents and paying a qualifying fee. Following are the 2012 qualified candidates for County Judge: Scott Andringa, Group 2 Cathy Ann McKyton, Group 2 Donald E. [...]

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Florida Political News: April 20, 2012

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Our digest of, and commentary on today's Florida political news and punditry.Data mining for knuckle-draggersFlorida wingers are in a frenzy:Enlisting [certain] Florida Christians in a high-tech outreach program by identifying and signing up tens…

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“Keep the Rays in St. Pete” group forms

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It got a little lost in the shuffle last week, but a new grass-roots group has formed with the purpose of keeping the Rays where they are: “Keep the Rays in St. Pete,” reports Noah Pransky of the Shadow of the Stadium. It fulfills another Stadium Saga prediction made three years ago: “Grass-root efforts will pop [...]

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St. Pete residents may see their tax increased to close budget gap

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Thursday’s City Council Workshop on the fiscal year 2013 budget proposed higher taxes, fees and assessments just to maintain St. Petersburg as the city faces a $13 million budget shortfall. St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster concurs with city council members in the assertion that this budget shortfall cannot be met by cuts alone. A realistic [...]

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Best of the Blogs: Bait and Switch

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Progress Florida Education Center’s Best of the Blogs for the week ending 4-13-12Best of the Blogs is featured weekly as part of Progress Florida Education Center’s popular free Daily Clips service. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4…

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Sen. Bill Nelson to speak in St. Pete to mark two-year anniversary of BP Oil Spill

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Friday will mark the two-year anniversary of when the entire Gulf region was rocked by the news of an explosion on the BP Deepwater Horizon oilrig in the Gulf of Mexico, reports William Mansell of Patch. Millions of gallons of oil spilled into the Gulf, tourists fled Florida’s (and the rest of the Gulf’s) beaches [...]

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Fla. senator: Scott budget veto ‘allows poor black farmworkers to die’

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State Sen. Gary Siplin, D-Orlando, says he is “shocked and surprised” that Gov. Rick Scott cut funding for a community health center in Apopka that would have gone toward providing specialized care to a community of farmworkers facing serious illnesses due to pesticide use.

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Rick Scott vetoes $2.5 million for regional planning councils — again

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Among the 2012-13 state budget line items vetoedby Gov. Rick Scott this week was $2.5 million for the state’s 11 regional planning councils – for the second year in a row, reports Bruce Ritchie. The planning councils under state law are responsible for reviewing local development proposals and establishing regional plans that include economic development. The councils hosted a series [...]

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Pulitzer takeaway: Editorial cartoonists are funny again

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The Florida dumbing-down budget

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The vaguely uncomfortable-to-watch Romney Veepstakes are in full effect.  I don’t know about you, but I figure the guy just about has to pick Marco Rubio, the junior Senator from Florida.  And even though Public Policy Polling, via Jed Lewison at DailyKos, says that a Rubio pick doesn’t necessarily lift Romney, since the man is trailing Obama [...]

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Two years after BP spill, settlement near, tourism back

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Two years after an explosion killed 11 workers and sent oil spewing into the Gulf of Mexico, BP has paid nearly $2.7 billion in claims to Florida businesses and individuals for damages caused by the worst spill in U.S. history, reports Michael Peltier of the News Service of Florida. Florida regions economically devastated by the [...]

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Florida SYG Task Force Member: Guns Are Fine, But Abortion Is Deadly Force?

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Gov. Rick Scott has appointed a legislator who pushed the Florida bill banning physicians from asking patients with children if they have firearms in the home. Rep. Jason Brodeur (R-Orlando) backed the bill which would fine or land doctors in jail for asking a patient or a patient’s family members…

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Kale chips and the LMS

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For the last three Thursday mornings, I’ve sat through presentations by a combination of developers and sales teams from three different learning management systems (or LMSs), since USF’s IT department wanted to look at the institution’s choices and asked faculty and students from around the university to help organize an evaluation of different LMSs.1 We [...]

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Like Having It "Both Ways" Mitt? Well, Here You Go!

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Since Ann Romney reportedly "loved it" when the stay-at-home mom controversy erupted up last week, which she responded to by saying "all moms are working moms," she should be absolutely over the moon with this news! House Democrats have introduced a bill that would allow stay-at-home mothers to raise their…

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St. Pete’s Museum of Fine Arts, where Michelle and I were married, #3 on Martha Stewart’s top wedding spots

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Once Michelle had deigned to marry me, I wasn’t very concerned about any of the other details. Now, anyone who knows me knows that first sentence is a bald-face lie. During the run-up to Michelle and I’s wedding, I was nothing less than a Groomzilla. After all, it was my day, too! (That’s for you [...]

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The Ghost in the Machine goes for a ‘walkabout’

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Although I have not been fortunate enough to have been following Kevin Murphy’s Ghost in the Machine blog as long as my colleague Benjamin Kirby, I have been almost as equal in enthusiasm for Murphy’s writing, especially his fondness for stories about space exploration and science. I will leave it Kirby to explain it better than me: [...]

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Getting the 911 question off the City of St. Pete’s dime

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I noted with some interest today that among others Steve Kornell indicated there had been some conversations with Chief Harmon about consolidating the St. Pete Communications Center with the County 911 Center. Not sure about the conversations, but one thing I am pretty sure about is this whole effort will go absolutely nowhere if left [...]

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