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Denise Grimsley says ag, biz background sets her apart in crowded Agriculture Commissioner race

in 2017 by

If you would have told Denise Grimsley in December she was about to launch a run for statewide office, she probably wouldn’t have believed you. It wasn’t something she was thinking about back then. She had already filed for re-election in the Florida Senate, but was starting to think about whether she wanted to run again. “In December, I had spent a lot of time with my family, and I had pretty much decided I’m walking into the end of…

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Speaker contest underway for 2022 House leadership

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

The last-ditch politicking has begun behind closed doors at an Orlando airport hotel. Freshman state Reps. Byron Donalds of Naples, Erin Grall of Vero Beach, Jamie Grant of Tampa and Paul Renner of Palm Coast, and most of the other 23 Republicans in the class gathered Friday at the Orlando International Airport Hampton Inn & Suites, with a vote expected sometime after noon. The meeting was closed to press and public. It appeared that more than 20 of the freshmen lawmakers…

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Blake Dowling: 2018 is coming, time to tighten up voter tech

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Only in the world of politics can an election take place with both sides claiming they got the W. In college football, it’s simple; you win or you lose — unless you are a Tennessee fan, then you get to be a “champion of life.” I am sure Tennessee Coach Butch Jones meant well when he muttered those words last year, but come on man. Back to politics. The special election (Karen Handel versus Jon Ossoff) in Georgia’s 6th Congressional…

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Stephen Bittel promises rapid growth as new Florida Democratic Party chief

in 2017/Top Headlines by

Newly-elected Florida Democratic Party Chair Stephen Bittel isn’t the kind of guy who shies away from a fight. And judging by his resounding victory Saturday, after a nasty campaign against four other candidates for the Party leadership, he doesn’t fight to lose. “Contentious elections are reflective that there are Democrats all over Florida that are passionate, committed to coming together, moving forward together to win elections. So contentious is good. It means you care,” Bittel said after defeating some candidates with much longer-…

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After two recounts, Seminole City Council election still up in the air

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Pinellas elections officials spent much of Tuesday recounting votes in the race for two seats on the Seminole City Council. But by the end of the day, the final results are still uncertain. A final decision won’t be made until Friday when the final overseas mail ballots will be counted. There are 74 of those countywide. It’s unclear how many might be from Seminole. The order of finish stands as it did on Election Day — Thom Barnhorn in first place.…

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Amendment 2 for medical marijuana sweeps the polls with a huge win

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Florida’s Amendment 2, relating to the availability of medical marijuana to patients who need it, swept the polls with a 70 to 30 split on Tuesday night’s election. The amendment proposes to make medical marijuana legal for doctors to give out prescriptions to patients who need it. Last time out, it got 58 percent of the vote, but because it required a “super majority” of 60 percent, it didn’t pass. Supporters of the amendment say it’s a sensible alternative medicine…

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Mike Mikurak’s donations to his campaign fatten his fundraising balance

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Mike Mikurak’s fundraising total far outweighs the amount raised by incumbent Charlie Justice. The two are battling it out for the District 3 seat on the Pinellas County Commission. The District 3 seat is at large and voted on countywide. Mikurak, a retired businessman, has deposited a total of $156,352 in his campaign account; Justice, $105,928. But a sizable portion of Mikurak’s total came out of his own pocket. As of mid-October, Mikurak had given about $42,700 in cash and…

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