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Mitch Perry Report for 9.23.16 – Fall follies

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Welcome to the first full day of fall, Florida style. Now maybe it will actually start to feel like a different season in say, about a month from now?

Speaking of the weather, good luck to the student-athletes at USF and Florida State University who will be playing in the excessively hot and humid conditions at high noon on Saturday at Raymond James Stadium. Or should I say, good luck to the fans who will be sitting under that unforgiving sun for close to four hours.

There was some high drama in St. Petersburg late yesterday afternoon, as Mayor Rick Kriseman went before his City Council to deal with the latest fallout from Sewergate. It’s evident that the mayor is truly paying the price for his lack of transparency when he failed to inform them the public about the 58 million gallons of waste that spilled from the Northwest treatment plant. The mayor has said that because it wasn’t sewage, there was no reason to alert the public.

No doubt he rues that decision today.

Meanwhile, up in Charlotte, North Carolina, the mayor and police chief there are continuing to insist that it’s not appropriate to release a videotape that shows the shooting and killing of of Keith L. Scott, who was killed by a Charlotte police officer earlier this week. There’s no good reason not to, unless officials think somehow it will piss the community off further – in which case, they should still release the video.

Ever hear of Robert Pittenger? I hadn’t either, but now I have, thanks to his ignorant statement he gave to the BBC last night. The Charlotte GOP Congressman said about the anger in Charlotte, “The grievance in their mind is the animus, the anger. They hate white people because white people are successful and they’re not. I mean, yes, it is, it is a welfare state. We have spent trillions of dollars on welfare, and we’ve put people in bondage so they can’t be all that they are capable of being.”

In other casual racism news, a volunteer coordinator for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign in Ohio resigned yesterday after the Guardian published a video interview in which she said there was “no racism” until President Obama came into office and that black people who’ve struggled to succeed since the 1960s have no one to blame but themselves.

“If you’re black and you haven’t been successful in the last 50 years, it’s your own fault,”Kathy Miller, chair of Trump’s campaign in Mahoning County, Ohio, said in the interview. “You’ve had every opportunity, it was given to you.”

Incidentally, Colin Kaepernick has made the cover of this week’s Time magazine.

In other news…

Patrick Murphy needs some help in getting his name familiar with Latino voters in Florida. His campaign is banking on the hiring of Freddy Balsera to be the cure.

Speaking of Hispanic voters in Florida, yes, Hillary Clinton has a substantial lead over Donald Trump with that demographic, but it’s smaller than Barack Obama’s pace of victory in ’08 and 2012.

Marco Rubio is getting in on the fun regarding St. Petersburg’s sewage problem, penning a letter to the EPA asking them to investigate what happened with a report on closing the Albert Whitted Treatment Plant that never made it to Mayor Rick Kriseman’s desk.

Starting Monday, Tampa’s Streetcar will be operating at 7 a.m. to begin transporting folks from downtown to Ybor City and back.

Indie SD 18 candidate Joe Redner says he’s only getting started in his uphill race against Dana Young & Bob Buesing. 

And Tim Canova will not go away quietly. The former insurgent Democratic party challenger to Debbie Wasserman Schultz announces he will create a new political action committee.

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 mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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