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Ryan Ray

Ryan Ray has 632 articles published.

Ryan Ray writes about campaigns and public policy in Tampa Bay and across the state. A contributor to FloridaPolitics.com and before that, The Florida Squeeze, he covers the Legislature as a member of the Florida Capitol Press Corps and has worked as a staffer on several campaigns. He can be reached at ryan@floridapolitics.com.

More than two dozen Florida House members re-elected without opposition

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

As of close of business for the state Division of Elections, it appears candidates in some 29 state House seats — nearly a quarter of the 120-member body — are already headed to Tallahassee. About 15 Republicans and 14 Democrats will have no need for a campaign manager this election cycle, according to a preliminary review of new state data. Big names among those newly elected include Speaker-to-be Richard Corcoran, who will return to his House District 37 with no opposition, and Democratic…

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Florida consumer confidence down for third straight month amid mixed economic news

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Florida’s consumers sentiment is trending negatively for the third straight month, according to a University of Florida survey. Consumers’ confidence in the wellbeing of the state economy dropped to 89, one point down from May’s report and tied with September 2015 for the lowest reading in the last year and a half. Overall economic news was mixed according to the survey, with three metrics decreasing and two improving. Perceptions of one’s personal financial situation now compared with a year ago showed…

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Jeff Moran drops out, backs Ken Sukhia in CD 2

in 2017/Top Headlines by

Republican Jeff Moran dropped out of contention for the 2nd Congressional District primary to succeed U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham Thursday morning, and is throwing his support behind former U.S Attorney Ken Sukhia. Moran’s move cuts the four-way GOP candidate pool down to three, and helps Sukhia consolidate his support in the more populous eastern half of the sprawling eastern Panhandle district. Spending as much time on the campaign trail as I have, you get to know the other candidates pretty well. I’ve gotten to know…

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Rick Scott: “disappointing” Obama admin rejected emergency declaration following Orlando shooting

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Gov. Rick Scott said Monday he finds it thoroughly “disappointing” Obama administration authorities have denied his request for a federal emergency declaration in the wake of last weekend’s deadly shooting at an Orlando night club. Scott cited $5 million he requested which the state of Florida will miss out on, which Scott said would have funded “emergency response efforts, law enforcement response, emergency medical care, counseling services and other social services to assist victims.” Federal officials have, however, approved $253,000 to help pay for…

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Kathleen Peters to hold St. Pete fundraiser with Jeff Brandes

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Rep. Kathleen Peters will look to infuse her House District 69 re-election campaign with a festive, craft beer-fueled fundraiser on Tuesday. The Gulfport lawmaker will be hosted by fellow Pinellas Republican, Sen. Jeff Brandes at the Green Bench Brewing Company in St. Pete on Tuesday, June 21. Peters is seeking a third term in the House in a moderate swing seat. She drew a Democratic challenger in Jennifer Webb in April, but expects local GOP support to rally around her. The HD 69 seat includes Gulfport, Madeira Beach, Pinellas Park, South Pasadena, St. Pete Beach,…

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Scott Batterson bribery conviction upheld on appeal

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Former Orlando-Orange County Expressway Authority board member Scott Batterson‘s 2014 bribery conviction has been upheld on appeal. On Friday, Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeals upheld the trial court conviction without comment. Batterson was convicted in a 2014 scandal in which he was seen as the linchpin of a pay-to-play deal at the expressway authority. The state had argued that Batterson tried to cut a deal with a contractor in exchange for the contractor hiring friends of his. On Oct.…

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Gwen Graham co-sponsoring Bill Nelson’s gun purchase oversight bill

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham may straddle the fence on some issues dear to progressives, but she came out on Thursday with a full-throated endorsement of Senate Democrats’ plan to notify the FBI when a suspected terrorist buys a firearm. The bill’s main Senate sponsor is Florida’s senior senator, Sen. Bill Nelson, who introduced the bill on Wednesday in response to renewed political will to rein in guns following Sunday’s lethal mass shooting at a gay night club in Orlando. “In the wake of the…

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