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Today on Context Florida: Top 10 government stories, Donald Trump & Hillary Clinton and minimum wage blues

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Today on Context Florida:

From palace intrigues to pot, 2015 brought a plethora of material to the Capitol Press Corps. Jim Rosica says trying to pick the top 10 state government stories is a subjective pursuit, to say the least, but here are the picks for the passing year: No. 1: The “firing” of Gerald Bailey – Gov. Rick Scott actually forced out the state’s top cop in December 2014 but the repercussions of that move spilled well over into the new year.

Diane Roberts wonders about those people convinced that Donald Trump is cahoots with Hillary Clinton, embracing ever-more extreme ideas guaranteed to get a Democrat elected in 2016. If so, she asks them to cease and desist. Donald Trump wants to be president. For real. He wants to show China who’s boss. He wants to “take out” the families of terrorists. He may not know what the “nuclear triad” is (Marco Rubio explained it to him in the last debate: the US can fire missiles from silos, planes and subs), but he wants the world to know he’s cool with using nukes.  His spokesperson later harrumphed, “What good does it do to have a nuclear triad if you’re afraid to use it?”

Shannon Nickinson notes that in Escambia County, minimum wage jobs aren’t just for kids. And that’s part of the reason this metro area lags behind others in the state in terms of prosperity. About one of every five jobs (23.6 percent) in Escambia County pays minimum wage, the data shows. That means 39,247 of your neighbors get by on $1,250 a month. Of those 16,135 are 29 or younger, and 15,998 are between 30 and 54. That’s the prime time for raising families and building up a nest egg, something that’s next to impossible on $1,250 a month

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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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