politics

Supreme Court Rejects Workers-Comp Challenge

Dec 28, 2015

The Florida Supreme Court has turned down a lawsuit that questioned the constitutionality of the state's workers-compensation insurance system -- though the system continues to face three other closely watched challenges at the high court.

Justices last week declined to take up a Miami-Dade County case that threatened the longstanding concept that disputes involving injured workers should be handled through the workers-compensation system instead of through civil lawsuits.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department / lacounty.gov

  In a key step for supporters of legalizing medical marijuana, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday unanimously approved a proposed constitutional amendment that would go on the November 2016 ballot.

Justices said the proposal, spearheaded by the group People United for Medical Marijuana, meets legal tests that include dealing with a single subject and having a clearly worded ballot title and summary. The Supreme Court does not consider the merits of proposed constitutional amendments but reviews them, in part, to make sure voters would not be misled.

Fish swimming in Miami? And hundreds of thousands of Americans on the FBI's terrorist watch list? To get to the bottom of these allegations, WUSF talks with Katie Sanders from PolitiFact Florida.

The warnings about climate change have been getting a good airing at the Paris talks on global warming, and in this country, Florida has been singled out as potentially the biggest victim from rising sea levels. President Obama went so far as to point out that low-lying Miami is at particular risk.

There are a lot of surprising things about Donald Trump's campaign. He has been atop polls almost constantly for nearly five months. Contrast that to GOP primaries of recent past, in which a series of "front-runners" have come and gone before a nominee was chosen.

Likewise, he seems not only immune to fact checks but is helped when he is perceived to be a victim of media targeting — even when he has made blatantly untrue claims and refused to back down.

President Obama is telling global leaders that the U.S. is taking the lead on combating climate change. But Congress would have to approve any money for the effort and Republicans are dead set against it. South Florida Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart says the president knows he's deceiving world leaders.

“This is a president who seems to be, every day, more and more out of touch with the reality of the world. And so, you know, would it surprise me if the president went and promised things he couldn’t deliver? It wouldn’t surprise me,” Diaz-Balart says.

St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman said he's banning Donald Trump from his city after the Republican presidential candidate called for the U.S. to stop Muslims from entering the country.

Playing off of Trump's earlier words, Kriseman tweeted Monday that he was banning Trump "until we fully understand the dangerous threat posed by all Trumps."

The Tampa Bay Times reports the mayor's jab was retweeted more than 1,200 times in about an hour.

House Speaker Paul Ryan issued a strong rebuke of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's call to impose a ban on all Muslims entering the United States.

Ryan, speaking during a news conference Tuesday, said he does not normally comment on what takes place in the presidential race, but felt it was "incumbent upon leaders," including himself, to "stand up and defend what conservatism is" and what Republican Party principles are writ large.

Scott Inks $3.1 Billion Deal With Seminoles

Dec 8, 2015

The Seminole Tribe of Florida has agreed to pay $3.1 billion to the state over seven years in exchange for adding craps and roulette to its current casino operations, under an agreement announced Monday night by Gov. Rick Scott.

Debate Over Capitol Holiday Displays Quieter This Year

Dec 7, 2015
Phil Sears / AP via Miami Herald

Visitors to the Florida Capitol likely won't see a Nativity scene this year. They also won't see a protest display from the Satanic Temple.

However, they could see a menorah. And an irreverent disco ball-topped, multi-colored gay pride festivus pole --- built of beer cans --- might still be on tap.

Needle Exchange Pilot Ready For Full Senate

Dec 7, 2015

Hoping to stem the spread of diseases such as HIV, a Senate committee Thursday approved a long-discussed proposal that would create a pilot needle-exchange program in Miami-Dade County.

Republicans are pushing toward Senate approval of legislation demolishing President Barack Obama's signature health care law and halting Planned Parenthood's federal money, setting up a veto fight the GOP knows it will lose but thinks will delight conservative voters.

Higher Ed Funding, Teacher Bonuses Move Forward

Dec 4, 2015

Proposals adding performance funding for colleges and universities into law passed House and Senate committees on Thursday, but the legislation faced concerns over university standards and a House-backed plan to reward teachers for their test scores.

Court Begins Working Through Redistricting Issues

Dec 2, 2015

A Leon County judge and lawyers for the Legislature and voting-rights organizations on Tuesday began muddling through the legal process for deciding on a new set of districts for the 40-member state Senate.

Eric Gay / AP via NPR

After a shooting spree at a clinic in Colorado, a conservative Florida group has postponed a rally that had been scheduled next week to protest government funding for Planned Parenthood.

The Orlando-based Florida Family Policy Council, sponsor of the "Florida Taxpayer Rally to Defund Planned Parenthood," said the Dec. 7 event at the Florida Capitol will take place in the spring instead.

Donna E. Natale Planas / Miami Herald

State regulators will hear arguments Tuesday on a proposal by Florida Power & Light to build a power plant in Okeechobee County, but critics question the need for the nearly $1.2 billion project.

FPL contends the natural-gas plant is the "best, most cost-effective option" to meet a need for additional power generation starting in 2019. The project, designed as what is known as a combined-cycle plant, would be built on an undeveloped site owned by FPL in northeast Okeechobee County.

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