The day that was in the CD 13 special election

in Uncategorized by

There’s no debating that Tuesday was one of the most entertaining days on the campaign trail for Pinellas County’s 13th Congressional District.

So get out your finest hotel linens and landscaping tools, because …

Here is the day that was in the special election in CD 13:

So THAT’S why she doesn’t debate — There might be a reason why Democrat Alex Sink has avoided appearing at candidate forums, says Peter Schorsch at SaintPetersBlog, something that was on display at Tuesday’s debate sponsored by the Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce. When asked about immigration reform, Sink replied it was an issue important to the beaches’ chambers “because we have a lot of employers that rely upon workers … to clean our hotel rooms or do our landscaping.”

Excuse me? What about kitchen helpers and waiters in Mexican restaurants?

Dredging up ancient dirt — Some unnamed (and unprincipled) person tipped off WTSP/10 News about a terrible 1989 accident where a 16-year-old David Jolly struck and killed Blair Warren Ropes while the man was walking along Bruce B. Downs. “It took several years for me to get to a place of peace,” Jolly told Reston Rudie, “but not something anybody would ever get over.” David Jolly Killed a Man was the Tampa Bay Times slug line for the report Monday night (stay classy, Times).  The context of why it should come out 25 years later (during a bitter election) also raises questions of motive.

Besides, what does — or should — that tragic event have to do with CD 13? Damned if I know.

“They Profit,” we lose — The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee released “They Profit,” a new digital ad with some specious claims about Republican David Jolly, “ties” with insurance companies and his views about the Affordable Care Act. The ad suggests that, with Jolly in Congress, the country will return to a time when insurance companies had “free rein to charge women more than men” and deny coverage for pre-existing conditions.

Now we know why some call campaigns the “silly season.”

A man with two homes Adam Smith of the Tampa Bay Times reports that David Jolly claimed tax breaks for homes in both Pinellas County and Washington D.C. in 2007, somewhat contradicting the claim that he was a “true Pinellas County resident” since buying an Indian Shores condo in 2005. Not so fast, says  Jolly consultant Marc Reichelderfer. “David Jolly did in fact pay back the homestead credit when the error was found back in 2007. Because he purchased the property after March 31 of 2007, Reichelderfer told the Times. “He would have only qualified for half of the credit for that year, equaling $264 (not the $528).” Jolly paid his 2007 property taxes minus the amount.

Can we get back to the issues now — please?

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.