Politics

Political news

New Water Policy Expected To Flow In Session

Dec 30, 2015
Earl Leatherberry/flickr

A statewide water-policy proposal is poised for the House and Senate floors early in the upcoming legislative session.

It would set water-flow levels for the state's natural springs and guidelines for the Central Florida Water Initiative, a regional water-supply planning effort.

The plan is a top priority of Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, and is expected to quickly pass both chambers.

But Putnam hasn't forgotten that last session, the House and Senate passed water-policy bills yet couldn't come to terms.

Lightblb on Flickr

Hundreds of thousands of registered voters in Florida are being asked to update their signatures.

If the signature on an absentee ballot doesn’t match what the elections office has on file, the vote can be tossed out.

Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections Penelope Townsley sent letters to nearly 200,000 voters who have previously requested ballots by mail.

Steve Bousquet in the Herald/Times Tallahassee Bureau says absentee voting has become so popular that an effort is underway to re-name it.

It's that time of year to once again cast our gaze on some of the most outrageous comments made by politicians. WUSF talks with PolitiFact Florida's Amy Hollyfield about their latest stocking stuffer - The Lie of the Year.

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.

WUSF News

The Florida Senate rested its case in support of a proposed map during the second day of a redistricting trial Tuesday, as lawyers for voting-rights organizations prepared to grill the chief map-drawer for the chamber.

The main witness Tuesday was University of Utah political-science professor Baodong Liu, who questioned whether plans offered by the League of Women Voters of Florida and Common Cause Florida would offer Hispanic and African-American voters a chance to elect candidates of their choice in some districts.

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.

Florida Roundup: Property Claims In Cuba And U.S.

Dec 11, 2015
Ramon Espinosa / AP

The U.S. and Cuba may have embassies in each other’s countries, but relations are far from normal. Human rights, basic freedoms and an open economy continue to be major areas of friction between the two.

For the first time, negotiators tackled the contentious issue of reparations this week. American companies and Cubans in America want billions for property confiscated two generations ago when Fidel Castro and the communists seized power. Homes, businesses, shops, factories, farms -- they were all just taken by the revolution.

Bar Jack / Flickr

Acknowledging "momentum" behind a proposal that would allow people with concealed-weapons licenses to openly carry guns, the Florida Police Chiefs Association said Thursday its board of directors had voted to back the controversial measure --- as long as changes designed to protect law-enforcement officers are included.

A spokeswoman confirmed that the police chiefs' group had contacted the sponsors of the proposal (SB 300/HB 163), Sen. Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, and his son, Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, who both say they're on board with the changes.

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.

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.

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.

Donna E. Natale Planas / Miami Herald

Almost a year after regulators gave approval to the controversial plan, Florida Supreme Court justices are ready to take up a battle about Florida Power & Light's investment in a natural-gas drilling operation in Oklahoma.

The Supreme Court on Dec. 8 will hear arguments in a challenge led by the state Office of Public Counsel, which represents consumers in utility issues, and the Florida Industrial Power Users Group, which is made up of large electricity customers.

Scott Unveils $79.3 Billion FL Budget

Nov 23, 2015

Governor Rick Scott unveiled Florida's proposed $79.3 billion 2016-2017 budget on Monday. Scott said he hopes to allocate more money this year and is projecting the state's revenue to increase. 

Scott introduced the plan at a small manufacturing business in Jacksonville. He says small business are integral to Florida, because they help diversify the economy and create more jobs.

That's why he says the new budget will call for $1 billion in tax cuts for manufacturers and retailers. Scott also wants over $20 billion to go towards education. 

Pages