Matt Falconer is back and he wants to take on Precourt in New FL House D44

In 2010 the Orange County Mayor’s race featured 4 very different personalities. The honest and calculating, eventual winner Teresa Jacobs. The savvy and calm Commissioner Bill Segal and, the sincerity and friendliness of Commissioner Linda Stewart.

Then there was businessman Matt Falconer and here’s one of his verbal gems.

“The reason Pine Hills isn’t getting any money is because my opponents have spent all of it, in the Emerald city (Orlando) on (performing) art centers”

He brought an “Economics for Dummies” book to a televised debate. He attacked on blogs, radio, social media, and television. His battle against Sunrail made him the Tea Party favorite for that race.

When he was defeated there was no doubt he would be back. He continued to attack Mayor Jacobs’ policy and stayed active on the Tea Party scene. Oh, he was going to run again it was only a matter of time and opportunity.

Today, he announced that he was going to run for Florida House. In the new District 44.

That’s Rep Stephen Precourt’s expected seat. Fellow State Rep. Eric Eisnaugle also lives in the district. Here is an excerpt of the release from the Orlando Sentinel story.

Matthew Falconer’s rock solid conservative resume and strong support of conservative and tea party groups will pose a serious challenge to the incumbent, Representative Steve Precourt, so much so that Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford called Matthew Falconer yesterday to inform him the Speaker is backing Precourt.

This race will be a classic case of a citizen candidate against the establishment and determine if the conservative groups, including the tea party, have enough grass roots strength to defeat the well-financed establishment candidates.

“While I do not consider myself the frontrunner by no means am I a long shot. We the people have always outnumbered the group called the establishment, we just never had the tea party to level the playing field.”

“It is time to restore faith in government and I hope to lead that effort in the Florida House.”

Much like he did in the Orange County Mayor Race, Falconer is shaking things up. The reception has been hostile. No, the reception has been brutally hostile.

Precourt has the support of his colleagues in Tallahassee

In addition to Will Weatherford supporting Precourt, House Speaker Dean Cannon removed Falconer from the Government Efficiency Task Force. A post Falconer was proud to serve on.

Falconer-Letter-02-24-12-SIGNED1

Stone cold and straight-forward. Classic Dean Cannon.

Then there was this letter from Ormond Beach State Rep Fred Costello. Who’s running against Craig Miller for Congressional District 6.

Hi Matt!
I just read Sayfie Review.
Congrats on your continuing interest to enter the arena to save taxpayers’ money!
As you may recall, I contributed to your mayoral campaign because (even though we don’t always agree on every issue) I like your focus on saving taxpayers’ money!
However … I am a huge fan of Representative/Chairman Steve Precourt!
I have been honored to serve with him on the Finance & Tax Committee which he chairs.
So I know his values.
He is conservative!
He has earned my ongoing support!

So why am I bothering to email you?
I have NO idea who else is in your new House District (or if the Supreme Court will require us to change the lines) now or in the future … but as I understand it, Chair Precourt only has two more years before he is termed out.
I am quite confident Chairman Precourt will do well in the upcoming election as he has an excellent conservative record and has also earned the respect of folks who are in positions to help him raise significant campaign funds.
He will be a most formidable opponent!
Therefore, I respectfully suggest you consider talking with Chairman Precourt (I’ll be happy to set it up if that would be helpful) and IF he is not aware of anybody else he is already supporting for 2014, you could announce that you will seek the seat in 2014 and agree with him to record your votes on 2012-2014 bills so he can see how you would have voted and therefore hopefully you will be able to earn his support when the 2014 race begins. (Notice I did NOT encourage you to make a “deal” … I don’t like endorsement “deals.”)

Please realize I am not saying you are not/will not be a great candidate.
I’m just saying there is a fabulous candidate who has earned my/our support.
And btw, I’m confident you don’t want another “loss” on your record.
Fred Costello

————————-

So, much like he did in the Orange County Mayor race. Matt Falconer is making noise and this was just the announcement.

Can he win? He’s got a puncher’s chance

Falconer can hustle with the best of them and his team was canvassing every weekend in 2010. Precourt ran a good ground game as well, and will certainly have the fundraising advantage.

The conservative culture between the two camps could not be further apart. Falconer’s loyal Tea Party following vs. Precourt’s traditional conservative crowd

It’s going to be fascinating to watch.

Matt Falconer's announcement was a bold statement against Florida House Republicans

Florida's Biggest Political Feuds 2011 Pt. 3

What was the biggest, Florida political feud in 2011?

Here we are at the big 3. The three biggest political feuds involving Florida Politics in 2011. What you’ll notice about these three feuds are that they involve large groups of Floridians, attached to the Politicians. These are feuds that affected individuals as much as the actual politicians involved in the conflict.

First a few honorable mentions that didn’t make the list.

Scott Powers of the Orlando Sentinel vs. Joe Biden’s Event Staff- When Powers was confined to a closet during a VP visit, he took it in stride and moved on (more misunderstanding than conflict)

The Florida League of Women Voters vs. The State Legislature- The new voter registration laws have pushed the league, dangerously close to wandering away from their non-partisan philosophy.

Orange County Redistricting Board vs. Hispanic and Democratic Activists- The board no one wanted, the maps few liked, and a cultural divide that was painful to observe and hurt everyone involved. Democratic operatives are using this harmful aggression to flip seats for next years elections.

Here are your top 3 political feuds in Florida for 2011.

3.Florida Republicans vs. New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada:

“Florida will hold it’s primary when it dog-gone feels like it!”

That’s what I thought in September that’s the way I feel now.

There was a lot of huffing and puffing leading up to the change and their were also threats from the powers that be, that Florida would be penalized by being stripped of half of it’s delegates (we’ve still got more than most states) and be passed over for preferential treatment during the Republican Convention next year.

In Tampa…(!?)

No matter, we did it anyways and were awarded another nationally televised debate and for the 4th time in 16 months, Florida will be the center of the political universe.

Who Won? Florida: That’s how we roll here in the Sunshine State.

Florida House Speaker Dean Cannon made the early primary in Florida happen.

2. Herman Cain vs. His Past: Herman Cain wins Presidency V straw poll! Herman Cain leading the polls in Iowa! Herman Cain on “The View”, “Tonight Show”, “Jimmy Fallon”.

The Herman Cain train was in full throttle after his victory at Presidency V in Orlando. Florida was responsible for his meteoric rise to the top of the polls and celebrity status in the mainstream. Even though he couldn’t explain 999 and his foreign policy knowledge was suspect, Cain who basically lived in Florida for months was on top. Conservative VIPs from all over the state were supporting him.

Then came the accusations. First one, then two, and then Gloria Allred holding nationally televised press conferences. All from women hurling dangerous allegations against Herman Cain for misconduct during his time with the National Restaurant association.

The Cain train came to a screeching halt and all of his supporters requested transfers. And just like that one of the most improbable political runs in recent history came to an end. The former CEO of “Godfather’s Pizza” suspended his campaign a few weeks after.

Who Won?: Newt Gingrich, who picked up the orphaned supporters from the Cain campaign and holds a narrow lead in key polls.

Herman Cain will be a sore spot for some as 2011 closes

And the #1 Political Feud of 2011:

1. Florida Governor Rick Scott vs. 71%:
When Rick Scott took office in January, all of the protesters were already in place. After his narrow victory over former CFO Alex Sink, they knew what was coming.

-Teacher Merit Pay
- Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients
- The hard cuts across the board

There was anger over his team’s salaries and appointments. He kept the media behind a velvet rope and killed high speed rail. He watched over the legislature as they held their most conservative session ever. It was everything he campaigned on.

And his approval rating dropped to 29%

He went on the charmed offensive. He lightened up his media policy. Even taking the chance to speak to this blog. He greenlit Sunrail and spoke to the Newspaper boards he’d avoided during his campaign and it worked, for a month or so. His rating flirted with the 40′s for a while.

It’s back down to the lower 30′s/high 20′s and rumors of Nan Rich, Dan Gelber, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, and even Ol’ Charlie Crist have been rumored to run against Rick Scott in 14′.

The Rick Scott era is still young and who knows what the next year holds? But, the protests, Anti-Scott publicity stunts, and media coverage have made Governor Scott’s conflict with Florida Protesters and his approval rating, the #1 feud of 2011′

Governor Scott faces an uphill battle to win over Florida Voters in 2012

What Conflicts might make it on the list next year?

Alan Grayson vs. Whoever you put in front of him: Everyone’s favorite/detestable, anti-hero/villain is back and he’s got money(as usual). Will he draw a primary opponent? What if it’s Val Demings? Who will he face in the General election, in one Florida’s new congressional districts?

Wildcards vs. Incumbents: Redistricting will affect races all over the states. Will Allen Westin his new left leaning district get the opportunity to be next years countdown? What about State House and Senate Races?

Bill Nelson vs. The GOP Nominee: Who will the nominee be? Nelson will be 70 when the election rolls around. Does he still got the fire to serve?

President Barack Obama vs. The nominee from the Republican Party: Let’s go ahead and put this one on the list now and here in Central Florida’s I4 corridor, it’s going to be a political war that, everyone is going to be in on.

In 2012, Presidential Politics will get everyone involved.

Conclusion: Occupiers, Event Protesters, and the continued influence of the Tea Party movement all played a large role not only in national politics but, right here at home. It’s this blog’s hope that everyone will get involved next year, and make their voices heard.

Florida’s Biggest Political Feuds 2011 Pt. 3

What was the biggest, Florida political feud in 2011?

Here we are at the big 3. The three biggest political feuds involving Florida Politics in 2011. What you’ll notice about these three feuds are that they involve large groups of Floridians, attached to the Politicians. These are feuds that affected individuals as much as the actual politicians involved in the conflict.

First a few honorable mentions that didn’t make the list.

Scott Powers of the Orlando Sentinel vs. Joe Biden’s Event Staff- When Powers was confined to a closet during a VP visit, he took it in stride and moved on (more misunderstanding than conflict)

The Florida League of Women Voters vs. The State Legislature- The new voter registration laws have pushed the league, dangerously close to wandering away from their non-partisan philosophy.

Orange County Redistricting Board vs. Hispanic and Democratic Activists- The board no one wanted, the maps few liked, and a cultural divide that was painful to observe and hurt everyone involved. Democratic operatives are using this harmful aggression to flip seats for next years elections.

Here are your top 3 political feuds in Florida for 2011.

3.Florida Republicans vs. New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada:

“Florida will hold it’s primary when it dog-gone feels like it!”

That’s what I thought in September that’s the way I feel now.

There was a lot of huffing and puffing leading up to the change and their were also threats from the powers that be, that Florida would be penalized by being stripped of half of it’s delegates (we’ve still got more than most states) and be passed over for preferential treatment during the Republican Convention next year.

In Tampa…(!?)

No matter, we did it anyways and were awarded another nationally televised debate and for the 4th time in 16 months, Florida will be the center of the political universe.

Who Won? Florida: That’s how we roll here in the Sunshine State.

Florida House Speaker Dean Cannon made the early primary in Florida happen.

2. Herman Cain vs. His Past: Herman Cain wins Presidency V straw poll! Herman Cain leading the polls in Iowa! Herman Cain on “The View”, “Tonight Show”, “Jimmy Fallon”.

The Herman Cain train was in full throttle after his victory at Presidency V in Orlando. Florida was responsible for his meteoric rise to the top of the polls and celebrity status in the mainstream. Even though he couldn’t explain 999 and his foreign policy knowledge was suspect, Cain who basically lived in Florida for months was on top. Conservative VIPs from all over the state were supporting him.

Then came the accusations. First one, then two, and then Gloria Allred holding nationally televised press conferences. All from women hurling dangerous allegations against Herman Cain for misconduct during his time with the National Restaurant association.

The Cain train came to a screeching halt and all of his supporters requested transfers. And just like that one of the most improbable political runs in recent history came to an end. The former CEO of “Godfather’s Pizza” suspended his campaign a few weeks after.

Who Won?: Newt Gingrich, who picked up the orphaned supporters from the Cain campaign and holds a narrow lead in key polls.

Herman Cain will be a sore spot for some as 2011 closes

And the #1 Political Feud of 2011:

1. Florida Governor Rick Scott vs. 71%:
When Rick Scott took office in January, all of the protesters were already in place. After his narrow victory over former CFO Alex Sink, they knew what was coming.

-Teacher Merit Pay
- Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients
- The hard cuts across the board

There was anger over his team’s salaries and appointments. He kept the media behind a velvet rope and killed high speed rail. He watched over the legislature as they held their most conservative session ever. It was everything he campaigned on.

And his approval rating dropped to 29%

He went on the charmed offensive. He lightened up his media policy. Even taking the chance to speak to this blog. He greenlit Sunrail and spoke to the Newspaper boards he’d avoided during his campaign and it worked, for a month or so. His rating flirted with the 40′s for a while.

It’s back down to the lower 30′s/high 20′s and rumors of Nan Rich, Dan Gelber, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, and even Ol’ Charlie Crist have been rumored to run against Rick Scott in 14′.

The Rick Scott era is still young and who knows what the next year holds? But, the protests, Anti-Scott publicity stunts, and media coverage have made Governor Scott’s conflict with Florida Protesters and his approval rating, the #1 feud of 2011′

Governor Scott faces an uphill battle to win over Florida Voters in 2012

What Conflicts might make it on the list next year?

Alan Grayson vs. Whoever you put in front of him: Everyone’s favorite/detestable, anti-hero/villain is back and he’s got money(as usual). Will he draw a primary opponent? What if it’s Val Demings? Who will he face in the General election, in one Florida’s new congressional districts?

Wildcards vs. Incumbents: Redistricting will affect races all over the states. Will Allen Westin his new left leaning district get the opportunity to be next years countdown? What about State House and Senate Races?

Bill Nelson vs. The GOP Nominee: Who will the nominee be? Nelson will be 70 when the election rolls around. Does he still got the fire to serve?

President Barack Obama vs. The nominee from the Republican Party: Let’s go ahead and put this one on the list now and here in Central Florida’s I4 corridor, it’s going to be a political war that, everyone is going to be in on.

In 2012, Presidential Politics will get everyone involved.

Conclusion: Occupiers, Event Protesters, and the continued influence of the Tea Party movement all played a large role not only in national politics but, right here at home. It’s this blog’s hope that everyone will get involved next year, and make their voices heard.

Florida's Biggest Political Feuds 2011 Pt. 1

Every year it’s fun to reflect on the often irrational, and violent nature of politics here in the Sunshine State. Nestled in between Harry Potter, Mickey Mouse, and our beautiful beaches. We have Occupiers, insane public meetings, and commuter rail.

There were a lot of political battles fought Florida over the last year. But with no election year drama, the fights were often between lawmakers and activists over key issues.

This lists only includes Florida lawmakers and the criteria judged was the intensity of the events leading to the rivalry, impact in the media (both traditional and social), talk in political circles, and the general nonsense involved.

So, here we go!

10. Governor Rick Scott vs. John Mica on High Speed Rail:

Rick Scott wasn’t even done unpacking when early this year he had to make a key transportation decision. Accept 2.4 billon dollars for High Speed Rail, from Orlando to Tampa. Or play it safe by avoiding the possible liabilities involved with tax payer dollars and send a message to President Obama on government spending.

Chairman of the Transportation Committee in D.C and long time Central Florida Congressman John Mica wasn’t trying to hear that.

What we got was a back and forth dialogue between the two debating the pros and cons in the media. Scott ultimately turned down the money because the parties involved couldn’t guarantee that there wouldn’t be any additional costs involved. Transportation Secretary Ray Lahood came down here about half a dozen times to ask us, if Scott was sure. He was.

Who Won? Scott and Mica: How? Rick Scott took this decision to the Tea Party and kept them on board with an early fiscal trophy and he was right about the potential issues. Problems are developing on other rail projects, in states that accepted the money. California has reported a number of setbacks.

Mica turned his attention to the Sunrail, a project that was far more popular and received strong support from all sides. Scott approved it a few months later. Ain’t compromise grand?

Mica still got Sunrail and Scott made a strong statement to kick off his term.

9. Mike Haridopolos vs. The World:

Senate Leader Mike Haridopolos would like to forget 2011. Bad book deals, session meltdowns, and talk radio fiascos were just a few of the fights Haridopolos had to worry about during his short lived Senate Campaign.

First there was the book, that’s right. One book he sold to Brevard Community College. That mentioned sage-like political advice. Like that a cellphone was necessary to run for office and that an internet connection is recommended. After the story broke he later sold electronic copies on Amazon.

Then after a late night showdown, he was out dueled in Tallahassee by House Speaker Dean Cannon and had to surrender some legislative battles to the house. They even montaged it.

Then there was this…..

Who Won?: The World: Unless you’re Scott Pilgrim this is a battle you’ll lose every time. This series of events was just too much for Haridopolos and he dropped his campaign for Senate a few weeks after. Few believe that Haridopolos’ political career is coming to a close. There has been rumors he’ll eventually be going after a Congressional seat.

Haridopolos will want to put 2011 as far behind him as possible.

8.Buddy Dyer vs. Occupy Orlando: This was a battle that Mayors of major cities all over the country had to deal with and Orlando was no different. Camped out by Lake Ivanhoe and marching down Orange ave on a nightly basis, the 99% had a strong presence in the City Beautiful.

Members of the Occupy Movement were frequent visitors to City Hall this year.

Who Won? Dyer: Orlando eventually had to start enforcing park ordinances and sent occupiers home at night. The movement still has no visible leadership. They could evolve into something else and comeback to haunt Dyer but, as long as he’s got the OPD, he’s in control.

7>Scott Randolph vs. Daphne Campbell: In what was a bizarre conflict between the two Democratic State House Reps. Randolph actually threw Daphne Campbell’s pen in the trash, when she crossed party lines on an abortion issue vote. Threats were made, demands followed and then this…

Who Won? Unclear:But, state house Democrats who are already working against a super majority of Republicans didn’t need this. It was loud, silly, and took the party’s eye off of the ball in Tallahassee. The future? Randolph sits comfortably in a left leaning district, Campbell already faces opposition and other political issues in her district down south.


Part II tomorrow!

Florida’s Biggest Political Feuds 2011 Pt. 1

Every year it’s fun to reflect on the often irrational, and violent nature of politics here in the Sunshine State. Nestled in between Harry Potter, Mickey Mouse, and our beautiful beaches. We have Occupiers, insane public meetings, and commuter rail.

There were a lot of political battles fought Florida over the last year. But with no election year drama, the fights were often between lawmakers and activists over key issues.

This lists only includes Florida lawmakers and the criteria judged was the intensity of the events leading to the rivalry, impact in the media (both traditional and social), talk in political circles, and the general nonsense involved.

So, here we go!

10. Governor Rick Scott vs. John Mica on High Speed Rail:

Rick Scott wasn’t even done unpacking when early this year he had to make a key transportation decision. Accept 2.4 billon dollars for High Speed Rail, from Orlando to Tampa. Or play it safe by avoiding the possible liabilities involved with tax payer dollars and send a message to President Obama on government spending.

Chairman of the Transportation Committee in D.C and long time Central Florida Congressman John Mica wasn’t trying to hear that.

What we got was a back and forth dialogue between the two debating the pros and cons in the media. Scott ultimately turned down the money because the parties involved couldn’t guarantee that there wouldn’t be any additional costs involved. Transportation Secretary Ray Lahood came down here about half a dozen times to ask us, if Scott was sure. He was.

Who Won? Scott and Mica: How? Rick Scott took this decision to the Tea Party and kept them on board with an early fiscal trophy and he was right about the potential issues. Problems are developing on other rail projects, in states that accepted the money. California has reported a number of setbacks.

Mica turned his attention to the Sunrail, a project that was far more popular and received strong support from all sides. Scott approved it a few months later. Ain’t compromise grand?

Mica still got Sunrail and Scott made a strong statement to kick off his term.

9. Mike Haridopolos vs. The World:

Senate Leader Mike Haridopolos would like to forget 2011. Bad book deals, session meltdowns, and talk radio fiascos were just a few of the fights Haridopolos had to worry about during his short lived Senate Campaign.

First there was the book, that’s right. One book he sold to Brevard Community College. That mentioned sage-like political advice. Like that a cellphone was necessary to run for office and that an internet connection is recommended. After the story broke he later sold electronic copies on Amazon.

Then after a late night showdown, he was out dueled in Tallahassee by House Speaker Dean Cannon and had to surrender some legislative battles to the house. They even montaged it.

Then there was this…..

Who Won?: The World: Unless you’re Scott Pilgrim this is a battle you’ll lose every time. This series of events was just too much for Haridopolos and he dropped his campaign for Senate a few weeks after. Few believe that Haridopolos’ political career is coming to a close. There has been rumors he’ll eventually be going after a Congressional seat.

Haridopolos will want to put 2011 as far behind him as possible.

8.Buddy Dyer vs. Occupy Orlando: This was a battle that Mayors of major cities all over the country had to deal with and Orlando was no different. Camped out by Lake Ivanhoe and marching down Orange ave on a nightly basis, the 99% had a strong presence in the City Beautiful.

Members of the Occupy Movement were frequent visitors to City Hall this year.

Who Won? Dyer: Orlando eventually had to start enforcing park ordinances and sent occupiers home at night. The movement still has no visible leadership. They could evolve into something else and comeback to haunt Dyer but, as long as he’s got the OPD, he’s in control.

7>Scott Randolph vs. Daphne Campbell: In what was a bizarre conflict between the two Democratic State House Reps. Randolph actually threw Daphne Campbell’s pen in the trash, when she crossed party lines on an abortion issue vote. Threats were made, demands followed and then this…

Who Won? Unclear:But, state house Democrats who are already working against a super majority of Republicans didn’t need this. It was loud, silly, and took the party’s eye off of the ball in Tallahassee. The future? Randolph sits comfortably in a left leaning district, Campbell already faces opposition and other political issues in her district down south.


Part II tomorrow!