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Mitch Perry Report for 3.16.15 — Vladimir Putin is still alive

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

In St. Petersburg today — St. Petersburg, Russia, that is — Vladimir Putin reappeared in public for the first time in 11 days, ending the rumors of a Kremlin coup or even his own death. This isn’t the first time that the Russian leader has dropped out of society for awhile, and the sh*t really starts to build up for Putin, who has been in charge in one way or another since 1998. The negative news of late was the recent murder…

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Conservative House Republican Dennis Baxley reverses his vote for gay adoption

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Although the vote by the Florida House of Representatives last week to repeal Florida’s 38-year ban on gay adoption was hardly overwhelming, there was little open dissent on the House floor, with only a handful of lawmakers even discussing the legislation before voting on it. Among those who did so movingly was Ocala Republican Dennis Baxley, one of the most socially conservative members of the Legislature. Baxley spent several minutes on the floor describing what he called “one of the…

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Stan McClain posts strong early fundraising for House District 23 race

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Three-term Marion County Commissioner Stan McClain announced raising $31,900 in February for his bid for House District 23. McClain’s campaign calls the latest fundraising numbers a show of strong, early support in the race to replace incumbent state Rep. Dennis Baxley in 2016, who is mounting his own run for the state Senate. “We are very encouraged by the support we’ve received throughout the community,” McClain said in a statement. “Our conservative message of economic growth and fiscal responsibility is…

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Christian conservatives put faith in Senate after Florida House votes to repeal ban on gay adoption

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The conservative-leaning Florida House today voted to support an amendment to a bill that removes a ban on gay adoption from state law. The final vote was 68-50. The amendment is part of a larger bill that creates incentives for Floridians to adopt children in state care. The vote came despite a last hour pitch against it by a number of Christian conservatives like John Stemberger, who urged his members in a mass email to stop what he called the…

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House bill would remove gay-adoption ban from law

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The Republican-dominated Florida House quietly acknowledged Wednesday that gay people have the right to adopt children when they supported a bill amendment that removes a gay-adoption ban from law. The vote came five years after an appeals court ruled that the state’s gay-adoption ban is unconstitutional. Then-Gov. Charlie Crist refused to appeal the decision. While some Republicans voted against the bill amendment, none spoke out against it and it was quickly approved. It is part of a larger bill (HB…

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Dennis Baxley hauls in nearly $80k in February to kick-start Florida Senate bid

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Republican state Rep. Dennis Baxley of Ocala raised $79,500 during the month of February for his bid for the Florida Senate, according to campaign finance reports recently released by the Division of Elections. That brings his war chest to a total of $94,610 overall. “We are pleased to receive this much support this early,” said Baxley in a statement Monday. The man who proudly accepts the title of “Father of Stand Your Ground” is an inveterate campaigner, having run and won…

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Charlie Crist declares his Independence

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A year after it seemed he was the man to beat for the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate and a virtual shoo-in in the general election, Charlie Crist has seen his poll numbers nose-dive and speculation has run rampant about his chances of surviving a primary against tea-party favorite Marco Rubio, the state’s former House speaker. The 53-year-old governor has scheduled a Thursday evening event in his hometown where he will reveal his plans, though three confidants have said he’s…

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