Karen Castor-Dentel leads quiet month of fundraising in Florida House 30 race

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State Rep. Karen Castor-Dentel D-Maitland led a slow month of fundraising in November, quietly banking just over 9k.

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Florida House 30 Changeable 10-13

Saturday Morning Political Headlines: Early Voting Starts Today

Let the games begin! (actually they started with absentee ballots, anyways)

Early voting starts today throughout Central Florida and if you’re as big of a fan of this service as I am, you’ll turnout over the next few days and avoid the election day rush.

In 2008 there were many Central Florida residents that wanted to vote but discovered it was more than a lunchtime task and didn’t have the time to wait line. Take advantage of this, and you’ll never vote on election day again! Ok, that sounds strange but check it out.

We’ve got some great content that points out early voting locations.

Have a great weekend!

CF News 13: Early voting locations for Florida’s August primary

Orlando Sentinel: 8-day early-voting period for primary election starts Saturday

WESH 2: (Video) Decade-old disciplinary records become sheriff’s race issue

WFTV 9 Eyewitness New: (Video) Reality Check: Review of Mica’s ad attacking Adams’ voting record

WKMG Local 6: Romney unveils simplified campaign message

WOFL Fox 35
: Obama, Romney see what they want in jobs report

Removing Jacobs from Expressway Authority reeks of fixing

Alright, let’s review Mayor Teresa Jacobs’ ethical track record.

- Within the first two weeks of office, she identified a duplication of duties and eliminated over 250 thousand from the County payroll
- She went against the political grain and called out Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer on bad book keeping with the new performing arts center.
- She kept her word. Investigated equal rights policies for the LGBT community and after investigating will be moving forward with a partner registry
- She appointed an ombudsman to serve the county and investigate complaints from citizens.
- She’s worked with County Comptroller Martha Haynie extensively last year to monitor expenses.
- She’s asked the Orlando Chamber of Commerce to clarify their use of public funding

and I could go on.

Does this sound like a lawmaker with an ethics problem? Someone who wouldn’t be aware of a conflict of interest? State Representative Mike Horner thinks so and his proposal to excuse Mayor Jacobs from the board reeks of Horner letting the wrong company steer his actions.

I say this about Mike Horner because I’ve always thought he’s been one of the more thoughtful lawmakers in the legislature. So, why this bizarre motion?

From an Orlando Sentinel article Horner said this:

“I am trying to add to the high ethical standards we have for this authority,” Horner said. “I think this is a step in the right direction.”

Rep Horner, I know you’re in Osceola county, have you been paying attention to what’s been going on with Orange County Government? I don’t think you have because, you would be well aware of this Mayor’s track record with ethics and that she can be painfully detail oriented at times.

The article also mentions that all of Jacobs’ normal opponents, those watchdogs who throw flags whenever the Mayor blinks the wrong way, have sided with her on this. Which just makes the whole scenario that much more bizarre.

What is really going on here?

Horner cites that the Osceola County Authority doesn’t have any elected officials on it.

Well, this isn’t Osceola county, Representative. What is this really about?

A normally level-headed Mike Horner is off-base with this one

Jeff Ashton Declares Candidacy for State Attorney- Photos/Video

On this sunny but, cold morning, in front of the Orange County Courthouse, Former State and Casey Anthony prosecutor Jeff Ashton, announced his candidacy for the State Attorney’s office. Currently held by his former boss Lawson Lamar

Ashton, who gained national recognition during the Casey Anthony trial, retired immediately afterwards. He went on to write a bestseller and made the rounds on the major talk show circuit.

Surrounded by friends, family, and a strong media turnout, Ashton said he had no bad blood towards Lawson Lamar but, cited a list of deficiencies and problems with the longtime incumbent’s administration. Poor handling of cases, lack of technology, low conviction rates, and operational discipline were just some of the areas he addressed.

He was asked several times by reporters about the Casey Anthony trial, and replied that this race will not be about one case. He stayed on message for the entire Q/A.

Photos and his full speech with Q/A can be found below.

Ashton earned national recognition during the Casey Anthony Trial

Ashton announced in front of the orange county courthouse, surrounded by family and supporters

All major media orgs were present and ready for the freezing conditions.

Ashton deflected Casey questions and stayed on message. But the trial's presence will be there until election night.

Here is the video. WARNING: It was freezing and I was shooting video, taking stills, and tweeting simultaneously. Parts of the video sound like it was shot in a wind tunnel. Make sure you take some Dramamine before viewing! I’ll try to do better the next time!

Linda Stewart building Campaign Team for “Higher Office”

Former Orange County District 4 Commissioner and OC Mayor Candidate, Linda Stewart announced on her Facebook page that she is throwing a Campaign Committee Recruitment Event, to seek “Higher Office”.

The announcement doesn’t mention which office she’ll be running for but, there has been rumors of her considering a run for the House of Representatives after redistricting takes place next year.

Stewart came in 3rd in the Orange County Mayoral primary last year. Underfunded and running a grassroots campaign that saw her “Getting Out The Vote” on her caravan, Stewart did better than expected almost making the cut for the runoff last November.

She has been popular with the Hispanic, and LGBT communities. She has also been a watch dog protecting the Econ Trail from questionable development projects. She’s also been out front on county initiatives to bring benefits to same sex couples.

The new congressional district could potentially lean Democrat. Alan Grayson has already declared a run for that TBD, newly created seat.

The message was clear that this is not a announcement or kick-off. If she makes a formal announcement, I’ll post it here.

The Former OC Commissioner is building her team. For which office?