Happy Halloween, and this morning we’ve got some potentially scary future fights over two big political issues.
We start with the latest chapter, in the long story over the legalization of Medicinal Marijuana that has been taking place all over the country. Florida’s Fight features two high profile political figures. State Attorney General Pam Bondi and Orlando Mega-Attorney John Morgan, who has spent a fortune on adverting and man power to get an amendment on the ballot for next year.
Yesterday, Bondi was joined in her opposition to the initiative by State Senate President Don Gaetz, and Florida Speaker of the House Will Weatherford asking the Florida Supreme Court to block the proposed amendment.
This will be a long, high profile political battle.
This story also leads your Thursday Morning Political Headlines
Yesterday Afternoon, 15 Protesters were arrested during an Immigration Reform Rally, when they began to block city streets downtown.
This morning most have them have been released on bond. There was a vigil held outside of the jail for those that were arrested.
You can see video from the protests including the arrests on my headline special from last night HERE.
The road to any possible deal on sweeping immigration reform is still a long way off with only to GOP House Members supporting the “Gang of 8″ Senate Bill, they are California Congressman Jeff Denham, and South Florida Representative Ileana Ross Lehtinen.
Here in Central Florida, no GOP Representative supports the bill and only Winter Garden Congressman Daniel Webster is willing to listen to a debate.
This story leads your Wednesday Morning Political Headlines.
This afternoon a group of activists were arrested during a rally for sweeping immigration reform, when a group of about 12-18 protesters (reports from the scene vary) blocked a downtown street during the event while calling on the GOP led House to take action on the issue.
The Central Florida GOP House Delegation is for the most part against the “Gang of 8″ Senate Bill Championed by Florida Senator Marco Rubio and even he has started to back away from the plan. Only Winter Garden Rep. Daniel Webster has expressed interests in having the conversation on Capitol Hill.
Even if it gets a vote, it will almost certainly be defeated. House Speaker John Boehner has said that the House will construct its own plan and eventually hold a vote on that. It’s unclear if and when that would take place.
The main dispute is the Pathway to Citizenship. The current plan would allow undocumented immigrants to begin the process while remaining in the United States. Conservatives have called it amnesty, and believe the process should start in the immigrant’s native country.
This story sweeps an evening edition of FPFT Political Headlines. We’ll have more in the morning.
References to Football and Sunrises, and falling just inches short of a confirmation, Former Governor Charlie Crist covered a lot of ground in his interview with WFTV today, at the Florida Democratic Party Annual Convention.
Here take a look (you can find the original story HERE)
“I’m going to announce something, in my hometown of St. Petersburg at 7am because I love the Sunrise” Crist said further fueling rumors that he would go after his old job and run against his Predecessor, Rick Scott next year.
Some other quotables.
“One way or another, it’s time to make a decision, this is a big race and a big place,” he adds “You’re going to need a lot of time to get this done, and get this done right”
“This is the 4th quarter, I am a Football guy after all , on landing on this decision, it’s one of the most important things to me”
On his transition from Republican to Democrat:
“Well, I’ve seen the light and I’m in a party that I feel much more comfortable being in now. I’ve always cared about the environment, and education, and caring for other people, and I’m not saying that Republicans don’t care about those things but the leadership in the Republican Party has abandoned a lot of things, that I care deeply about, and to be true to myself, to be true to Charlie, I had to come to the Democratic Party and I’ve never felt more welcome”
On Rick Scott’s Job Performance
“Frankly I’m disappointed and it starts with education, I mean when you cut 1.3 Billion Dollars out of our education system your first year, that’s not right, and when you follow it up and you cut 1.3 million dollars from higher education your 2nd year that’s not right, and what you see with voter rights and trying to supress that right, that isn’t right, people in Florida have that right to vote, they have the right to vote early, and I think it’s important that its supported”
Crist has slowly been making his way back on the political scene for over a year now. After he switched from Republican to Independent to avoid a primary with Marco Rubio, and lost in the General anyway, he hasn’t strayed far from the political scene. He finally jumped to the Democratic Party last November, after Campaigning Aggressively for Barack Obama during his re-election bid. Since then he’s been fundraising for candidates all over the country and it looks like November 4th it will potentially come full circle.
Today, the Orange County Commission will vote on a venue package that includes 20 million towards construction costs on a new Soccer Stadium that will ensure the City of Orlando becomes the next location of an MLS team in the country.
It’s only within the last 24 hours that I’ve been able to type that sentence. Yesterday, MLS President Mark Abbot visited each of the county commissioners and assured them that if the vote passes, which also includes construction costs for Citrus Bowl Renovations and the Performing Arts Center that it would be a sure thing.
It’s been a year long journey that leads to this. Read my full preview HERE. I believe it will pass but you never know. It’s going to be an exciting day on Rosalind Ave.
This story sweeps your Tuesday Morning Political Headlines.
The community if officially under Soccer Stadium watch, as Orange County Commissioner prepare to vote on a 94.5 million venues package which includes a new facility to lure an MLS Franchise to Orlando. Also included are the badly needed Citrus Bowl renovations, and construction funding to finish the new Performing Arts Center.
Interesting movement being reported on the ground. The MLS President is in town and will be reportedly meeting with County Commissioners with Orland City Soccer President Phil Rawlins. If he is personally looking each Commissioner in the eye and guaranteeing an MLS team, then it could be the last push needed to secure the votes required to past the package on Tuesday.
This story leads your Monday Morning Political Headlines and stay with me for all of your Soccer Stadium analysis this week.
We all know that the big Soccer Stadium Vote is going to go down on Tuesday in front of what is bound to be a packed house at the Orange County Commission Meeting on Rosalind Ave. What we don’t know is how the Commissioners plan to vote.
New reports have the Commission split somewhere between 2 yes, 4 maybe, 1 No. We know that 3 Commissioners have conditions they want the Orlando Soccer Club to meet before signing off the stadium which is part of a 94.5 million dollar venues plan that also includes funds for renovations on the Citrus Bowl, construction costs on the Performing Arts Center, and tourism advertising dollars. I think it’s very likely going to pass but we’ll find out on Tuesday.
Stand Your Ground is also back in the News. Tracy Martin wants the controversial law repealed. Tracy is of course, the father of Trayvon Martin, who was killed by George Zimmerman in early 2012. Zimmerman was found “Not Guilty” and it has since set off an emotional discussion of Self Defense Laws in Central Florida.
These are your Friday Morning Political Headlines. Have a great week!
Yesterday, Daytona Beach Residents celebrated 100 new quality jobs to the area, as Teledyne, opened a new Tech Center in the area. The company studies deep water oil extraction. Florida Governor Rick Scott was on hand to celebrate the occasion.
The Government is still shut down and the debt ceiling deadline is quickly approaching. Yesterday, the Country’s Credit Rating was put “On Watch” as a warning shot to the Lawmakers of what could happen if a deal isn’t reached in time.
All of that and dirty emails being sent to Deltona Lawmakers in Your Wednesday Morning Political Headlines. Have a great day!
This is what we’ve got on this brisk Tuesday Morning in Orlando.
Central Florida has a reputation of being one of the most dangerous cities in the country for pedestrians and today, we’ve got local officials and Law Enforcement taking action. There will be a plain clothes police officer, ensuring drivers follow crosswalk laws at busy intersections. If they don’t, those drivers will be cited on the spot.
We’ve also got Orange County Commissioner Scott Boyd’s condition for approving a 94.5 million dollar venues package, that would include a new Soccer Stadium for MLS. The Commissioner wants 70 acres of land for development in West Orange County. Add this to conditions from fellow County Commissioner Jennifer Thompson for rec fields on the east side, and Commissioner Pete Clarke, who wants the community to have some kind of ownership over any MLS franchise that lands in the area.
These stories lead your Tuesday Morning Political Headlines.