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AFP airs ads thanking GOP lawmakers for refusing to expand health care in Florida

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The Florida Legislature’s failure last week to come to an agreement on redrawing the state’s congressional maps was just the latest example of state Republicans unable to come together. A battle over Medicaid expansion roiled the Legislature for most of its Regular Session this spring. Nearly everyone in the state Senate supported proposals that would have expanded Medicaid and provided health care coverage to hundreds of thousands of low-income residents, but the House of Representatives remained resolute in its opposition. And despite…

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No surprise: Tea Party activists prefer Ted Cruz over Jeb Bush

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Senator Ted Cruz of Texas was the hands-down favorite of an Americans for Prosperity gathering this weekend, if the number and volume of ovations during the speeches of five presidential candidates who addressed the summit of Tea Party activists was the measure. At the other end of the spectrum was former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, a newcomer to events financed by conservative industrialists Charles and David Koch. Bush was attending his first national conference of Americans for Prosperity and was…

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Americans for Prosperity names annual ‘Champions of Economic Freedom’ in 2015 session scorecard

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The Florida arm of the conservative advocacy group Americans for Prosperity has issued its annual legislative scorecard, which ranks state legislators based on their propensity to vote “pro-economic freedom.” The group graded all 160 state lawmakers based on their votes on economic issues. Votes considered in favor of deregulation were rewarded, whereas votes that reined in industry were given negative scores. As was the case in years past, Republicans did well and House Republicans did even better. Forty-six members of the House, or…

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Debbie Wasserman Schultz calls Jeb Bush comments on phasing out Medicare a ‘massive blunder’

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Democrats such as DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz are seizing on comments that Jeb Bush made Wednesday night regarding Medicare. Speaking at an Americans for Prosperity event in New Hampshire, Bush said brought up the government-run healthcare program for seniors by first blasting television ads back in 2012 featuring a Paul Ryan-look-a-like pushing an elderly person off the cliff in a wheelchair. That ad was in reference to the Ryan budget that called for phasing Medicare out and instead make it into…

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Film tax incentive bill again dies on cutting-room floor in Tallahassee

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A sizable percentage of the 100,000 or so entertainment industry professionals in Florida feel let down this week. The Legislature once again refused to include money in the state’s $80 billion budget for tax incentives to lure Hollywood to film in the Sunshine State. “I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed,” said Gus Corbella, chairman of the Florida Film and Entertainment Advisory Council and the director of government law and policy for Greenberg Traurig. The regular legislative session…

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First look — Americans for Prosperity goes in on Senate FHIX plan in new mailers

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Conservative political group Americans for Prosperity-Florida told FloridaPolitics.com Thursday afternoon that it will target legislators supportive of a FHIX-style healthcare expansion plan with a new mail piece portraying the ongoing Senate-driven negotiations as a “game.” The mailers feature the number to Senate President Andy Gardiner‘s district office in Orlando and exhorts recipients to “Tell Andy Gardiner we’re done playing the Health Care game.” “We want real reforms, not more ObamaCare Medicaid expansion,” the piece proclaims. “While the Senate continues to negotiate with…

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Strange bedfellows: Conservative solar supporters funded by traditional green groups

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When Debbie Dooley makes a case for solar power, she isn’t falling back on the same old environmental arguments. The Tea Party firebrand from Woodstock, Ga., talks about property rights, national security, and the free market. To Barry Goldwater, Jr., the former Republican congressman, support for solar energy is a conservative stance against power utilities that are trying to “limit energy choice.” Right-leaning pro-solar groups, like those founded by Dooley and Goldwater, might offer evidence – at least in some media…

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