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Today in Context Florida: Rick Scott’s xenophobia, Wild West family and No Party Affiliation voters

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Today on Context Florida:

The governor of Florida has permanently foreclosed the possibility that people will ever take him as anything other than a fool, says Chris Timmons. Gov. Rick Scott says it would be dangerous for Florida to accept 425 (though that is, in fact, unknown but Scott clings to it) Syrian refugees because of the recent attacks in Paris by jihadists (though these jihadists are European nationals). Scott’s kind of xenophobia is not unusual, Timmons adds.

Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for family. This year, Sally Swartz is particularly grateful that she was able to meet a descendant of her Wild West relatives. Swartz never been to Jackson Hole, but when the plane landed in August, the picturesque Wyoming town felt familiar. The Grand Tetons, dotted with pines, rise abruptly around the town. Almost everything looks as it did in photos her grandfather kept of a family trip to Wyoming in the 1930s.

Steve Schale addresses one myth that is out there about the rise in No Party Affiliation voters: that it equates to a less-partisan environment and voting. Shale wishes this was the case. In fact, quite the contrary, as more voters spurn the two major political parties, voting in Florida has actually gotten more partisan. There is plenty of evidence to show that as voters become less partisan in their registration, they are actually becoming more partisan in their voting.

Visit Context Florida to dig in.

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.

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