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Orlando gunman apparently searched Facebook during attack

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While his victims texted heartbreaking last words to loved ones from the blood-drenched bathrooms, Omar Mateen apparently went on Facebook to measure the shockwaves his attack on a gay nightclub was generating. He searched for the terms “Pulse Orlando” and “Shooting,” according to a letter released by a Senate committee. The letter detailing Mateen’s Facebook posts and searches in the final hours of his life came to light as grief-stricken Orlando prepared to bury the first of the 49 dead…

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Senate panel OKs call for “use of military force” against ISIL

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Florida lawmakers continued to dabble in foreign policy on Monday, when the Senate panel unanimously passed a bill calling for an authorization of force against Al-Qaeda and Islamic State groups in Iraq and the Levant. The Committee on Military and Veterans Affairs, Space, and Domestic Security approved SB 1710 by Sen. Greg Evers, which calls on Congress for the “authorization for the use of military force” against the groups. The bill originally called on federal lawmakers to “declare that a state of war…

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Rick Scott is ‘infuriated’ by Florida tie to terrorist group

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Gov. Rick Scott released a brief statement Friday saying news of a terrorist group sympathizer being from Florida was “infuriating.” Scott’s office said Joshua Ryne Goldberg of Orange Park was charged with “attempting to plant a bomb at a September 11th memorial ceremony in Kansas City, Missouri, this weekend.” According to Fox News and CBS, Goldberg presented himself as supporting the Islamic State, the radical Islamist militant group also known as ISIS. Here’s Scott’s statement: The report of a possible ISIS sympathizer planning a…

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Annual lobbyist conference starts today in Tampa

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The Florida Association of Professional Lobbyists‘ 11th annual conference kicks off later this week in Tampa. This year’s conference runs Wednesday-Friday at the Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay on Bayport Drive. The keynote speaker, however, is still in flux after the planned headliner had to cancel because of a last-minute scheduling conflict, executive director Mark Landreth said. Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III, commander of the U.S. Central Command in Tampa, was going to talk on “Making America Secure in the 21st Century.” The military command is responsible for security…

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