Here is your “Week in Review”. Yeah, I goofed on one of the slides! It happens. Have a great Sunday!
Welcome to Florida Politics with Frank Torres. This is your week in review for Sunday, October 21st. We have a lot to go over, let’s get right to it. Unfortunately, the week started off tragically with the loss of longtime Orange County Tax Collector Earl K. Wood. Wood passed away at age 96 on Monday, my thoughts go out to his family and those who were close to him. The process to replace him was completed later in the week, as the Orange County Democrats selected Scott Randolph. State legislature and Attorney to replace Earl K. Wood on the ballot. Randolph a very controversial lawmaker, very partisan, we’ll say, one of the biggest partisan bomb throwers, in Tallahassee, no desire to work across the aisle. A fighter for that party who declined to run for re-election, in district 47 earlier this year will take Earl K. Woods place on the ballot. I could sit here and tear Randolph up all day, he was suing the county a couple of weeks ago, and now he wants to be the county’s Tax Collector, I’m not sure what the logic is behind that. There were other choices, rumored, being better off to take Wood’s place on the ballot. You’ve got Phil Diamond who was a very capable candidate before he got ran over by the Buddy Dyer juggernaut in the Orlando Mayor race. You had Rod Eddins who was well spoken of by his colleagues, but it’s Randolph, I’m not sure what kind of brand of politics he’s going to bring to this race. But, based on his track record, it might be a partisan one. The voter will make that decision, all votes for Earl K. Wood, will go to Scott Randolph.
The next you had complaints coming out of the State House district 30 race between Scott Plakon and Karen Castor Dentel. Allegations that Castor Dentel used her position as a school teacher to solicit another job while she was running, or unfairly used that position to contact her colleagues in the Orange County Public School system about another job. These complaints are still coming to light. There still being investigated or thoroughly vetted. There was the incident where Castor Dentel had said that those emails had not “gotten to that level” on one newscast earlier in the day, It was revealed later that day, that indeed they had. It’s a very competitive race, both parties want that race very badly.
I also had the chance to attend a candidate forum, earlier in the week, out in Pine Castle, the big opponent matchups were between State House District 47, Dr. Bob Brooks vs. Linda Stewart, the two couldn’t be farther apart on the issues. Normally, these candidates tend to meld together, during these general elections but, these two could not be more different, there going to give the voters a clear choice. I’ll also be previewing that race later this week. We also had the Orange County Sheriff race between John Tegg and current Sheriff Jerry Demings. Those two don’t like each other, longtime foes. A lot of argument over how the office should work, a lot of argument over statistics, that should be a heated race all of the way until election day.
Then on Tuesday we had the Presidential debate. The 2nd debate between President Barack Obama and GOP and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. That one was a slugfest, the President woke up for that second debate, in the townhall and the two went at it for 90 minutes. Interrupting each other, getting in each others, faces, jumping the moderator, conflicting with moderator Candy Crowley, a lot of analysts say Obama fared better during that debate, and are now looking to Monday’s debate as a tie-breaker. We’ve seen that these debates affect polls, so it will be interesting to see what each candidate does to get the last word in with the voters, before they head to the polls in a couple of weeks, one conservative commentator George Will, called it the great Presidential debate of all time.
Speaking of debates the very next night, we had the U.S Senate debate between Bill Nelson, and Connie Mack. As exciting as the debate the night before was, was as boring as this debate was. Time constraints, neither candidate could not get what they needed to get, out because, there wasn’t enough time to say it. Not a diss on the moderators or anything like that, but the time constraints really hurt both candidates. Connie Mack going after Bill Nelson on his record, a lot of issues from the Presidential race, spilling down to the the Senate race, that’s the case all over the country. Nelson called out Mack asking him “if that was the only line he memorized”. Constraints really hurt that debate. Mack understandably wants another debate, I think Nelson should take it. We can never have too many of these things. I don’t think Nelson is going to do it, the political math doesn’t add up.
Later in the week, one of our own News Organizations, making some news of it’s own. The Orlando Sentinel endorsed Mitt Romney in the race for President. The Orlando Sentinel often gets accused of being too left leaning. Or too Democrat friendly. So, there endorsement of Mitt Romney made national news. And the very same day, Romney was in Daytona beach Friday night, a very successful event and a little momentum for Romney heading into the tie-breaker debate.
On local television this weekend. The debate for Congressional district 10 is going to be televised Dan Webster vs. Val Demings. The you’ll have both candidates separately on Political Connections, on Central Florida News 13, I’ll be on there on giving my analysis on the Presidential debate as well as a preview of what’s to come.
Two weeks to go! You’re starting to see a lot of candidates who look like they’ve been campaigning for a long time. A lot of people start hitting the wall around this time. A lot of people start going crazy around this time. So, it will be interesting to see what surprises pop up. A lot of new stuff coming up on this blog. I want to make sure we’ve got some fresh material as we head towards election day, for now that is your Week in Review. I’m Frank Torres, I’ll see you next time.