Politics

Political news

Miami Herald

Republican State Senator Joe Gruters, representing Florida's 23rd District, is the new President of the Florida Republican Party. Gruters won handidly during the annual GOP conference in Orlando last Saturday, defeating Charlotte County Republican Bob Starr.

Robert Hunter / Courtesy of the Florida House of Representatives

A few South Florida Democrats will have new leadership positions in the state Legislature when session starts in March.

Rep. Kionne McGhee, a Democrat from south Miami-Dade County and the incoming minority leader in the Florida House, created four new deputy positions. Three of them represent South Florida.

Each new deputy minority leader will oversee a group of House members; the Democratic caucus of 47 members is divided roughly along geographic lines. There are a total of 120 members in the House.

Florida Senate via Twitter

Florida’s political world is built around two-year cycles.

And the latest acrimonious, head-scratching cycle finally ended Tuesday when the state Elections Canvassing Commission certified the results of the Nov. 6 elections.

The acrimony, of course, did not end with the usual campaign attack ads and nastiness. It lasted nearly two additional weeks as ballots continued to be counted and recounted and legal fights raged.

Wilfredo Lee / Associated Press via The Miami Herald

Florida Democrats in Washington could only watch when the Republican Congress decided against new gun legislation after a shooter killed 17 students and staff at a Parkland high school last year. Nor could they force action to combat rising sea levels off Florida’s coastlines. 

That will change come January. 

After gaining 38 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, including two in Florida, Democrats will control the lower chamber for the first time since 2011. 

Election Changes Eyed As 2018 Results Finalized

Nov 20, 2018
Christian Colón / Miami Herald

After months of mudslinging, weeks of court wrangling and days of ballot counting that again landed Florida in an unwelcome national spotlight, a state panel matter-of-factly finalized the 2018 election results in a five-minute meeting Tuesday.

The certification came on time, but problems with other election-related deadlines in two large, heavily Democratic counties --- Palm Beach and Broward --- are prompting county supervisors and legislative leaders to ponder possible solutions to the state’s ballot-box woes.

Elizabeth Koh / Miami Herald

Miami Lakes Republican Jose Oliva called for civility among lawmakers as he vowed to continue his party’s push for limited government after being formally elected Tuesday to serve as House speaker for the next two years.

Mark Foley / Florida House of Representatives

Upon winning the Florida governor’s race, Ron DeSantis had firmly established himself as an unyielding partisan who’s an ardent defender of President Donald Trump and a relentless prosecutor of his Democratic opponent, Andrew Gillum. 

But in the two weeks since Election Day, the 40-year-old former congressman has been tinkering with his brand. 

Caldwell Concedes Cabinet Race To Fried

Nov 19, 2018
Meredith Gettings / Florida House of Representatives

Republican Matt Caldwell pointed to a need for political “sanity” and a “peaceful transfer of power” Monday as he conceded the race for Florida agriculture commissioner to Fort Lauderdale lawyer Nikki Fried, the only Democrat to win statewide this year.

Caldwell, a real-estate appraiser from North Fort Myers who has served the past eight years in the Florida House, said in a statement that he still had questions about how ballots were handled in Palm Beach and Broward counties, where he had filed a lawsuit. But he didn’t want to use “legal loopholes to win an election.”

Courtesy of ACLU Florida

After 40 years of leading American Civil Liberties Union chapters in Michigan and Florida, Howard Simon is calling it quits.

He’ll remain in Florida, and plans to stay active, but will relocate from Miami to the Gulf Coast. The end of a long career with such a venerable organization might normally elicit polite plaudits from across the political spectrum. But that’s not necessarily true when it’s the ACLU.

Christian Colón / Miami Herald

Florida voters whose mail-in ballots were rejected because of signature problems had the chance to fix those ballots over the weekend.

Secretary of State Ken Detzner released a new affidavit form to cure vote-by-mail ballots with mismatched signatures.

The canvassing boards decided whether to accept both versions of the form only hours before the deadline.

Left: WLRN, Right: Ron DeSantis' Twitter

The men who are vying to be Florida's next governor cast votes for themselves Tuesday morning, with Republican Ron DeSantis near Jacksonville and Democrat Andrew Gillum in Tallahassee.

DeSantis, who represented a northwest Florida district in Congress before resigning his seat to focus on his gubernatorial campaign, went to the polls in Ponte Vedra Beach with his wife Casey early Tuesday morning.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Activist Emma González, who became famous after giving an impassioned speech in Fort Lauderdale days after the shooting at her Parkland high school in February, stood on the steps of Florida's old state Capitol building on Monday and urged people to vote.

"Gun violence is on the ballot," González said. "Our lives are in the hands of the people that we elect. Vote in every election like it's your last, because it very well could be."

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis told voters at a Jewish deli in Aventura on Tuesday he'd be a champion for Israel if elected governor.

Andrew Gillum and Ron DeSantis.
Miami Herald

Longtime Republican strategist Mac Stipanovich says the Florida governor’s race between Democrat Andrew Gillum and Republican Ron DeSantis  is shaping up to be an echo of the 2016 presidential race.

Pages