Possible Trump Effect On Florida's Politics & A Conversation With Grammy-Nominated Seraphic Fire

Jan 9, 2018

Florida is gearing up for the gubernatorial election come this November. Last Friday, Rep. Ron DeSantis officially announced he would enter the governor’s race.  The move comes after receiving an endorsement from the president on Dec. 22 via Twitter. President Donald Trump tweeted, “Congressman Ron DeSantis is a brilliant young leader, Yale and Harvard Law, who would make a GREAT Governor of Florida.”

Following the endorsement of the president, DeSantis amassed public support from other wealthy individuals. POLITICO obtained a list of supporters who make up DeSantis’ “Finance Leadership Team.”  They include Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and Breitbart co-owner Rebekah Mercer,  as well as other donors who funded President Trump’s campaign.

What can the early support of DeSantis mean for the gubernatorial race? POLITICO’s Matt Dixon talks about a possible Trump Effect in Florida’s politics.

“I think from a policy perspective they are on the same wavelength,” Dixon said about the president’s decision to support DeSantis’ run for governor.

DeSantis, a conservative Republican from Northeast Florida and a member of the House Freedom Caucus, opposed the independent federal investigation of Trump and supports moving the U.S embassy of Israel to Jerusalem. Such political stances please members of his Finance Leadership Team, according to Dixon.  

The financial support of wealthy donors gives DeSantis an edge, but it is too early to make predictions, according to most observers. Adam Putnam, currently Florida's agriculture commissioner,  is the GOP frontrunner. Last May, Putnam declared his run for governor and has campaigned extensively. Latest numbers estimate he has raised over $22 millions in campaign funds. 

At the moment, it is unclear what will happen with current term-limited Gov. Rick Scott. For a year, the Republican Party has expected Scott to run against U.S. Senator Bill Nelson, the incumbent and a democrat. At the moment, Gov. Scott says he is focused on his current job. 

South Florida's Grammy Nominated Choir: Seraphic Fire

Holiday traditions in South Florida include visiting Santa’s Enchanted Forrest, enjoying Key West’s holiday parade or enjoying a holiday concert by Grammy-nominated choir ensemble Seraphic Fire. 

Seraphic Fire has put South Florida at the center of the artistic innovation by featuring the country’s elite vocalist performing various masterworks of cultural significance.

The ensemble was the brainchild of conductor and artistic director Patrick Dupré Quigley.

Quigley was about 22 years old when he began aggregating local instrumentalists and vocalists. Since then, the ensemble has featured professional musicians chosen for their exceptional talent from throughout the nation that meet in South Florida for tours and performances.

“I was really lucky to be surrounded by amazing people that continue to be part of the organization today,” Quigley said.

The group’s repertoire ranges widely from Gregorian chants to Baroque masterpieces to Mahler and commissioned works by the nation’s best composers. The sound of Seraphic Fire is distinctive. The different sounds of the musicians' voices do not blend in, but rather stand out individually. 

“I really wanted the audience to hear and experience the flavor that each individual voice brings to a performance,” Quigley said.

For January, the ensemble will perform David Lang’s The Little Match Girl Passion. The first of the three-part Parables of Passion series.

The first performance begins on Wednesday, Jan. 17 at 7:30 p.m. in Miami at St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church, 2401 SW Third Ave.