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Speaker moves ‘Eyeball Wars’ closer to House floor; docs say optometrist testimony ‘patently false’

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Florida’s “Eyeball Wars” between ophthalmologists and optometrists could soon be spilling onto the House floor. On Monday, Speaker Richard Corcoran removed HB 1037 — a controversial bill to allow optometrists to perform surgery, among other things — off the agenda of the House Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee. A representative for Corcoran told POLITICO Florida that the measure, which seeks to expand optometry further into the practice of surgery, was one of 12 bills removed from Appropriations under Rule 7.18(c) because…

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State lawmakers applaud Florida TaxWatch during annual State of Taxpayer dinner

in Apolitical by

State lawmakers applauded Florida TaxWatch this week, hailing the organization for its role in the legislative process. “The folks that formed Florida TaxWatch had a good focus in mind,” said Sen. Jack Latvala. “And as a result of Florida TaxWatch’s efforts, we’ve turned things around.” The taxpayer advocacy group hosted its State of the Taxpayer dinner Wednesday. The annual event is meant to highlight issues affecting the average taxpayer, and features speeches from Latvala, Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera, Attorney General…

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Report: Rick Scott committee releases robocall targeting Republicans who support killing Enterprise Florida

in 2017 by

Voters across the state will be getting robo-calls blasting their representative for voting for a bill to kill Enterprise Florida. POLITICO Florida reported that Let’s Get to Work, the political committee backing Gov. Rick Scott, has funded another round of robocalls hitting Republicans who voted for a bill (HB 7005) that would eliminate Enterprise Florida and a slew of other economic incentive programs. “Unfortunately, your state representative … is playing politics with Florida’s jobs,” the ad says, according to POLITICO…

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Final push for fundraising before 2017 Session kicks off

in Statewide by

Think of it as the last hurrah before the 2017 Legislative Session. Members of the House and Senate can’t raise money while the Legislature is session, putting a 60-day pause on fundraising each year. And while that may be good news for their most loyal contributors’ pocketbooks, it does mean you can expect a mad dash for last minute fundraising before clock starts on the 2017 Session. House Majority, the fundraising arm of House Republicans, has a bevy of fundraisers…

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Dana Young, Amber Mariano, others file to run for re-election in 2018

in The Bay and the 'Burg by

Count them in for 2018. Dozens of state lawmakers have already filed to run for the state House and Senate in 2018. For some, their decision comes before their first bills get a hearing. Others have their eye on the higher office as they embark on their final term in the House. State elections records show more than 50 members of the House and Senate have filed to run in two years. While many of those are incumbents who faced…

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Endorsement Watch: National Right to Life, the Florida Medical Association, the Florida Retail Federation and others issue endorsements

in 2017/Top Headlines by

There are just a few weeks until the election, and organizations across the state are rolling out endorsements for state and federal candidates. Several organizations — National Right to Life, the Florida Medical Association, and the Florida Retail Federation — issued endorsements. — Local law enforcement officials have thrown their support behind Neal Dunn in Florida’s 2nd Congressional District. The Dunn campaign announced the support of Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford; former Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner, former Bay…

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Democrats’ problems ousting Manny Diaz in HD 103 about to get worse

in Peter by

In a way, House District 103 is the Democrats’ Moby Dick. The younger-skewing, heavily Hispanic district spanning parts of Miramar, Hialeah Gardens, and Medley elected President Barack Obama by a 10+ point margin in 2012. The HD 103 seat straddles Broward and Miami-Dade Counties, places Democrats need to plant their flag and hang their hats big-time if they’re ever going to get anything close to a majority again in Tallahassee. Even CFO Alex Sink — a Tampa Bay politician with a Southern accent — got…

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