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Mitch Perry Report for 5.13.16 – Friday 13th edition

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Well, so much for that much anticipated San Antonio-Golden State NBA Western Final. Congrats to the Oklahoma City Thunder, who took down the Spurs in six. Gotta love the unexpected.

 Today the Republican Party of Florida hosts their first of a two-day spring meeting in Tampa. I just realized that the Republicans always hold these type of events in Tampa, while the Democrats generally prefer Orlando. ….A transgender student who was suspended for using the restroom at school is challenging a new Marion County School District policy that prohibits transgender students from using restrooms consistent with their gender identities violates federal anti-discrimination law. That happens while the Obama administration is going to send a directive to that school board – and every other one in the nation – telling them to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity. Cue the hysteria.

Some people considered yesterday’s television coverage of the just a little hyped tete-a-tete between Paul Ryan and Donald Trump was cable news at its worse. Really? Others called it for what it really was – Thursday.

Nice to see Jerome Stockfish’s byline in today’s Times, or Times/Tribune hybrid. Times management could have done us all a service and published the names of the staffers with the Trib who were offered jobs at the paper. Instead, we get a small trickling everyday of what lucky reporters made the cut, and they’re really aren’t that many.

CD 18 Democratic hopeful Randy Perkins tells POLITICO Florida’s Marc Caputo that he’s going to give up fundraising. Considering the guy’s a multi-millionaire, is this what qualifies as bravery in national politics these days? If elected, however, he says he’ll also refrain from fundraising, meaning he could be another co-sponsor for David Jolly’s Stop Act.

In other news…

Who says that Dems and R’s don’t come together? In the House, the body overwhelmingly voted on 18 different anti-drug bills this week, and now Sarasota’s Vern Buchanan is calling on the Senate to follow up.

HD 49 Democratic candidate Carlos Guillermo Smith is now campaigning for a statewide marijuana decriminalization bill, after Orlando became the latest Florida municipality to pass their own ordinance on the issue.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz refuses to debate her CD 23 challenger, Tim Canova, but for how long can she get away with that?

There are some excited local Democrats – delegates for Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton – who found out this week that they’re going to Philadelphia for the convention.

And for the first time this year, Hillsborough GOP incumbent state attorney Mark Ober raised more money in a month than did his Democratic upstart challenger, Andrew Warren.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at

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