Florida

DeSantis Supports GOP Convention Move To Florida

May 26, 2020
BUTCH DILL / ASSOCIATED PRESS

TALLAHASSEE --- Gov. Ron DeSantis said Tuesday the political conventions for both major parties would be great for Florida's coronavirus-damaged economy as President Donald Trump has suggested moving the planned Republican convention out of North Carolina.

“Heck, I'm a Republican, it'd be good for us to have the DNC (Democratic National Convention) in terms of the economic impact when you talk about major events like that,” DeSantis said while in Miami to announce two appointments to the Florida Supreme Court.

In a decision with potentially far-reaching implications for November's election, a federal judge in Florida has determined a state law that would have required felons to pay any outstanding court fees and fines before they can register to vote is unconstitutional.

The ruling on Sunday by U.S. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle moves hundreds of thousands of felons who have completed "all terms of their sentence including probation and parole" one step closer to winning back their right to vote.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is defending the firing of the state's top data scientist tracking the coronavirus pandemic. Rebekah Jones was ousted from her position with the Department of Health on Monday. She says she was let go for refusing to manipulate data to support the state's reopening.

When first asked about Jones' dismissal, DeSantis on Monday called it a "nonissue." He said he understood from an email she sent her supervisor that "she was tired and needed a break."

Florida Knew A COVID-19 Pandemic Was Likely. State Leaders Didn’t Warn The Public

May 20, 2020

Three months ago, Floridians were celebrating Valentine’s Day unaware that the novel coronavirus posed any real threat to their lives, or that it was likely already spreading through the state. No one had told them to be worried.

Courtesy Oxfam

COMMENTARY

America’s immigrant labor hypocrisy — especially Trump America’s immigrant labor hypocrisy — stinks. And right now, as we used to say in Indiana, the smell could knock a buzzard off a manure wagon.

Or perhaps in this case I should say it could make a meat-packing plant seem fragrant.

South Florida Not Included In Governor's Plan To Reopen Florida

Apr 29, 2020
Pedro Portal / Miami Herald

TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that Florida will start lifting stay-at-home orders starting Monday.

In a plan he’s labeling, “Safe. Smart. Step-by-Step,” DeSantis said Wednesday that the state will take a “very slow and methodical approach” to reopening in order to convince the public it’s safe.

The orders won’t apply to Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties, however, where the epidemic has hit hardest. 


MATIAS J. OCNER / MIAMI HERALD

On this Monday, April 27, episode of Sundial:

When Should Florida Reopen? 

Florida is experiencing a bit of an identity crisis. 

A contentious federal civil rights trial is slated to begin Monday that will determine whether hundreds of thousands of people with felony convictions will be able to vote this fall in the swing state of Florida.

On one side of the case is Florida, along with a slew of other states supporting it from the sidelines.

On the other, hundreds of thousands of people who have completed their sentences but currently can't vote because of one thing they lack: money.

NASA

South Florida has been sizzling in recent weeks, with a slew of new record high temperatures, and a record for the number of records being smashed.

There’s something else heating up: the ocean. And that could be bad for hurricane season.

Jacksonville, Fla., Mayor Lenny Curry announced Thursday that parks and beaches in Duval County would reopen Friday at 5 p.m. with certain restrictions. The mayor said restrictions would allow "essential activities" only, as defined in an executive order signed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Those "essential activities" include walking, biking, hiking, fishing, running, swimming, taking care of pets and surfing, as long as they're done within social distancing guidelines. Sunbathing is still prohibited.

Judge Fights Suspension For Insubordination In Calder Race Course Case

Apr 16, 2020
ROBYN SORTAL / Miami Herald File

TALLAHASSEE — Calling the discipline a “gross abuse of power,” an administrative law judge has appealed a five-day suspension he received for accusing his boss of making what are known as improper “ex parte communications” when reviewing an order in a case about a South Florida horse track.

MATIAS J. OCNER / Miami Herald

Are Floridians getting the full picture of how fast the coronavirus is spreading? And why can't the anguished families of senior citizens living in group homes find out which facilities are affected?

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday that teams of National Guard personnel were being dispatched to dozens of nursing homes and assisted living facilities where COVID-19 cases have been found to test residents and staff for the virus.

DeSantis said the four-person National Guard "strike teams" have already been sent to 93 such long-term-care facilities, where a total of 962 positive cases have been discovered. But he said he wants to further expand testing.

Elections Supervisors Want DeSantis To Make Changes

Apr 9, 2020
MATIAS J. OCNER / Miami Herald

TALLAHASSEE — Florida election supervisors have asked Gov. Ron DeSantis for emergency measures they say will help them cope with an anticipated “significant statewide shortage” of poll workers later this year because of the novel coronavirus.

The local officials want the governor to issue an executive order allowing supervisors to designate additional or alternative early voting sites, give counties the option of adding an extra week to the two-week early voting period and allow people to cast ballots at early voting sites through Election Day.

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A big question going into this Easter weekend is whether some pastors in Florida will decide to hold services despite the risks of COVID-19 infection. One conservative Christian leader is trying to help congregations – and state and local officials – make the right call.

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