Here’s where sh*t stands – the “before I leave for Tallahassee” edition

in Uncategorized by

Michelle and I are headed to Tallahassee for three days of, well, I’m not exactly sure.  Probably a lot of drinks at the Governor’s Club while we catch up with our friends in the Capital whom we haven’t see in a while because of all the planning for the wedding.  But before I go, there are a few odds-and-ends around these parts that are worth sharing.

It is one of the worst-kept secrets in Tampa Bay politics, but Rep. Larry Ahern announced over the weekend that he is switching districts to run in the open District 66 seat. It’s doubtful Ahern will draw a serious challenger, even if he’s not exactly a natural fit for his new district.

Ahern’s move leaves Rick Kriseman unopposed in District 69, at least for the moment.  And while I would have thought Kriseman was surely going to run for Mayor in 2013, he increasingly appears like he will run for re-election in 2012, regardless of what he has planned for 2013.  Last week, Kriseman blogged this on his campaign website:

It’s hard to know what the final version of my new district will look like, as I have concerns about the constitutionality of many of the districts in the House-approved maps. Should the Florida Supreme Court approve the district as currently drawn, I am excited about the opportunity to once again represent many residents with whom I have a long-standing relationship. The proposed House District 69 includes much of my current district, but adds several neighborhoods I represented while on the St. Petersburg City Council. The Jungle, Azalea and Park Street neighborhoods are very active and were three of my favorites. The new district also proposes to add the neighborhood I grew up in, as well as South Pasadena, where I have many close friends, and where my karate school is located. Lastly, the new District 69 brings in the South Pinellas Beaches, an area I adopted when Republican Leadership attempted to put oil rigs off our beaches. District 53 has been great to me, but there’s a lot I love about the proposed District 69.

Doesn’t that sound like Kriseman is running for re-election or doth he protest too much?

Neil Brickfield is kicking off his re-election campaign with a fundraiser at Bascom’s Steakhouse on February 29.

Did you notice Jack Day drew an opponent? Her name is Agnes McCabe.  A woman with the last name McCabe — the same last name as the State Attorney — running for judge (females have a proven track record of winning judicial races in the Sixth District).  Judge Day could have his hands full.

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer will be in Tampa on Wednesday for a fundraiser for his re-election.  The event is at the Tampa offices of Floridian Partners Ana Cruz. The host committee includes Bob Buckhorn, Betty Castor, Janet Cruz, Bob Henriquez, Bill McBride and Alex Sink.

Look for State Senator Mike Fasano to endorse Chris Sprowls’ challenge of Rep. Peter Nehr.

I’m still trying to run down several rumors swirling around Sprowl’s campaign.  I keep hearing the same story about how Speaker Designate Will Weatherford pleaded with Sprowls not to run against an incumbent Republican and that Weatherford and Chris Dorworth promised Nehr they would help him in a primary.

Congratulations to Rep. Shawn Harrison, whose Fallen Heroes Family Tax Relief Act, which would grant property-tax relief to the surviving spouse of a military veteran who died from served-related cause while on active duty, passed out of committee.

Daphne Streets talked with former Senator Charlie Justice about the possibility of him running for the County Commission and the answer she got should be encouraging to Pinellas Democrats.

Justice said there is a “good chance” he will run for the County Commission in 2012.

You just have to chuckle at the irony of this quote from Senator Jim Norman: “Every elected official needs to thoroughly look anywhere where their families have investments.”

Good grief!

The Tampa law firm Wilkes & McHugh last week won a $900 million judgment stemming from injuries suffered by a Gainesville nursing-home resident.

But the nursing-home operator has gone out of business, and its parent is in receivership. That has left Wilkes & McHugh trying to track down the companies’ assets. Here is a link to a Gainesville Sun story about the case.

The influential Red State blog is not too happy with the high marks Jack Latvala has received from the American Conservative Union.

County Commissioner Ken Welch is looking for a new campaign manager.  Mitch Kates was slated to run Welch’s re-election campaign, but is evidently heading for Georgia to run a campaign there. Not Georgia the state, Georgia the country! Kates, with whom I just started to get to know better, will be working a presidential campaign in Georgia. What an exciting opportunity.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.