Life and politics from the Sunshine State's best city

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Michael Mishak

Michael Mishak has 10 articles published.

Sen. Marco Rubio heads to Colombia

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While most the country recovers from an election hangover, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio is heading to Colombia. Rubio is to begin a two-day trip to Bogota Wednesday. His staff says he will meet with Colombian officials, as well as business and civic leaders, to discuss the status of peace talks, counter-narcotics efforts and possibilities for exporting such efforts to other countries in the region. Rubio is making the trip in his official capacity as a member of the Senate’s foreign…

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Americans for Prosperity builds political machine (in Florida) with eye on 2016

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Over scrambled eggs and croquettes, Andres Malave gave a last-minute pep talk to about a dozen volunteers in a Cuban restaurant before they left to meet voters. “Don’t just deliver a message,” he said before beginning his own 3½-hour shift knocking on doors. “Try to get them engaged.” It’s a strategy playing out in New England diners, Midwest truck stops and West Coast cafes: conservative organizers train and send out thousands of volunteers holding an iPad and an interest in…

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Bill Clinton rallies support for Charlie Crist in governor race

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Bill Clinton is lending his political star power to Democrat Charlie Crist, a former Republican governor who is locked in a tight race for his old job in the nation’s largest swing state. The former president on Friday headlined a rally in Miami where he implored Democrats to defy historical trends and turn out and vote in November. “We’re great at doing what’s right if there’s a presidential election on the ballot but we’re not nearly as good as our…

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Democrats courting Florida’s changing Cuban voters

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When Charlie Crist went to Miami’s Little Havana recently, the Democratic candidate for governor stood before a crowd and said what few politicians have in decades of scrounging for votes in the Cuban-American neighborhood: End the trade embargo against Cuba. “If you really care about people on the island, we need to get rid of the embargo and let freedom reign,” he said, shouting above a small band of protesters who responded with chants of “Shame on you!” Crist’s supporters…

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Republican Curt Clawson wins CD 19 special election

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In a victory for the tea party movement, Republican Curt Clawson won a special election in southwest Florida on Tuesday to replace former U.S. Rep. Trey Radel, who resigned in January after pleading guilty to cocaine possession. The businessman and former Purdue basketball star cruised past Democrat April Freeman and Libertarian Ray Netherwood in a solidly Republican district on the state’s Gulf Coast. With all precincts reporting, uncertified results show Clawson captured 67 percent of the vote for District 19, which includes most of…

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As seas rise, Florida’s top Republicans balk at climate change

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On a recent afternoon, Scott McKenzie watched torrential rains and a murky tide swallow the street outside his dog-grooming salon. Within minutes, much of this stretch of chic South Beach was flooded ankle-deep in a fetid mix of rain and sea. “Welcome to the new Venice,” McKenzie joked as salt water surged from the sewers. There are few places in the nation more vulnerable to rising sea levels than low-lying South Florida, a tourist and retirement mecca built on drained…

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Florida judge punches public defender

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A Florida judge is accused of punching an assistant public defender during an altercation in a hallway outside a courtroom. WFTV in Orlando reports that Judge John Murphy hit assistant public defender Andrew Weinstock after the two exchanged words over whether his client could have a speedy trial in the Brevard County courtroom. Weinstock’s supervisor, Public Defender Blaise Trettis, tells WFTV that the judge grabbed Weinstock’s collar in the hallway off the courtroom after the judge asked the attorney to come…

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