The Florida Roundup

Fridays at 12 PM

Listen to a panel of journalists and newsmakers discuss every week with hosts Melissa Ross and Tom Hudson the issues that define the Sunshine State. 

This show is co-produced with WJCT in Jacksonville. 

Citrus County Commissioners will decide later this month whether to purchase a digital subscription to The New York Times for the county’s library system. The last two commission meetings heard from residents who were outraged when commissioners joked about not approving a $2700 contract for a digital subscription to the paper.

On Friday’s program, we took a closer look at Florida’s Republican Party with Mike Haridopolos, author of  The Modern Republican Party of Florida and George Will, a columnist and the author of The Conservative Sensibility.

Scott Applewhite / AP

Conservative commentator and author George Will says Florida voters hold the key to victory in next year’s presidential election. Will says that without the Sunshine State, it would be difficult for any candidate to find a path to 270 electoral votes.

On Friday's program, we took a closer look at the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump, it’s ties to Florida, and two new University of North Florida (UNF) polls. 

Brynn Anderson / AP

A recent poll shows Florida will likely be a 2020 battleground state as voters here are evenly split when it comes to the impeachment inquiry into President Trump. The University of North Florida poll shows 49 percent of registered voters in the state approve of the House of Representatives formally beginning an impeachment inquiry, while 47 percent disapprove.

Ellis Rua / Associated Press

Florida’s Republican lawmakers are looking at new ways to address climate change in the state.  It’s part of a shift in policy when it comes to addressing environmental issues.  The sea change comes as younger republicans ditch old policies, which included not even using the words climate change.

COURTESY PHOTO: JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS,VA

Despite a ban in 22 Florida communities, conversion therapy is a widespread practice in Florida, according to activists. 

Evan Vucci / AP

President Donald Trump is pledging to protect Medicare.  The president visited The Villages in central Florida – a collection of communities for residents 55 and older.  He announced and signed an executive order aimed at protecting and improving Medicare coverage.

Trump also used the event as an opportunity to tout his administration’s health care goals and achievements. He criticized the proposals set forth by his Democratic rivals, which he called socialism.

On today’s show, we looked at how the impeachment inquiry is playing with Florida voters. 

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Florida’s congressional lawmakers are divided down party lines about President Trump’s impeachment inquiry.  That includes moderate Democrats like Rep. Stephanie Murphy of Central Florida, who had resisted calls for impeachment until this week. The state’s congressional Republicans are standing by the president, with no signs of wavering after the release of the recent whistleblower report.

Caroline Lewis/Cleo Foundation

Thousands of Florida students are demanding lawmakers and politicians act on climate issues. Across the state, students from Miami to Melbourne, and Fort Lauderdale to Jacksonville, skipped school as part of the Global Climate Strike. Protestors hope to put pressure on lawmaker to act faster on climate issues.

16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg inspired the climate strikes. The action comes ahead of a planned UN Climate Action Summit that takes place next week in New York.

We spent the full hour taking a closer look at the growth of the charter school movement in Florida with:

Florida Charter Schools Get Mixed Marks for Success

Sep 13, 2019
Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Nearly 300,000 students attend charter schools in Florida. Charters are taxpayer funded, privately run and are changing the state’s public education system.

This week, Hurricane Dorian devastated the northern Bahamas and stalked Florida, which was spared a direct hit, for days.

AP

Floridians are bracing for a major hurricane just as funding for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is being directed away from disaster relief and to the southern border of the U.S.

The Department of Homeland Security announced this week it will move $155 million dollars from FEMA to border security. 

Governor Ron DeSantis said on Thursday he doesn’t think the move will affect any money needed after Hurricane Dorian and that he is “confident it’s not going to affect Florida in a negative way.”

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