State Sen. Paula Dockery of Lakeland jumped into the governor’s race last November well aware that her opponent had a running start in name recognition, fund-raising and endorsements. But she maintains that her notions of “common-sense conservatism” have been eclipsed in the party by a dictatorial style and undue deference to big business. She opposed the Everglades land deal with U.S Sugar and voted against the bill abolishing teacher tenure this session. In recent months, she has ramped up the criticism of her primary opponent, Attorney General Bill McCollum, for snoozing through the Republican Party credit card scandal. A Queens native, Dockery began her legislative career in 1996 and has worked on issues as diverse as high-speed rail, water management and open records. She steps into the Tigers’ Den to give us her take on the leadership Florida needs next and her reasons for taking on a long-shot candidacy.
The luncheon program is 12:00 to 1:15 pm and will be held at the St. Petersburg Yacht Club located at 11 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg.