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Monday, Sep 22, 2014

Fresh Squeezed

A Florida Politics Blog

Made fresh, never frozen, here's the juice on local and state politics from the staff of The Tampa Tribune, The St. Petersburg Tribune and the Tribune/Scripps Capital Bureau.

Gov. Scott signs death warrant for double-murderer

Published:   |   Updated: September 22, 2014 at 06:29 PM
James L. Rosica in Tallahassee

Gov. Rick Scott on Monday ordered the execution of a Gadsden County man convicted of the murder of his wife and the rape and murder of his 10-year-old stepdaughter.

Chadwick Banks, 43, will be put to death 6 p.m. Nov. 13 at Florida State Prison in Raiford, according to a letter signed by Scott that accompanied the death warrant.

Banks, who at the time was on felony probation for aggravated assault, shot wife Cassandra Banks in the head as she slept early on Sept. 24, 1992, according to a news release.

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DCF employee wins race discrimination suit against agency

Published:
James L. Rosica in Tallahassee

A federal jury in Tallahassee last week sided with a Florida State Hospital employee who had filed a race discrimination suit against the state.

Jurors awarded Phyllis Garrett $10,559 in lost wages and $10,000 for “mental and emotional anguish,” finding she was discriminated against when she was denied promotions, court documents show.

The Department of Children and Families, which oversees the hospital, “is currently reviewing the verdict and exploring our legal options,” spokeswoman Alexis Lambert said.

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Come out and Run For The Fallen, honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice

Published:   |   Updated: September 19, 2014 at 06:03 PM
Tribune staff

The war in Afghanistan may be drawing to a close, but it is still a very dangerous place.

Just this week, the Pentagon announced three more deaths, including one civilian contractor, bringing the total, by my count, up to 2,335 U.S. service members who have died in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, the nation’s longest war.

And there are tens of thousands of troops deployed around the world, including about 1,600 in Iraq, which is also a very dangerous place.

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High school football fans will hear domestic violence message

Published:   |   Updated: September 18, 2014 at 11:49 PM
By Erin Kourkounis

TAMPA — Before kick-off at all high-school home football games in Hillsborough County for the next two weeks, the announcer will ask athletes and spectators to pledge they’ll take a stand against domestic and dating violence.

Two local groups of youth sports officials — the West Coast Umpires Association and the West Coast Officials Association — will launch a campaign to crack down on domestic violence by reading a proclamation at the beginning of the 12 home games scheduled for tonight in Hillsborough stadiums, as well as the 15 home games scheduled for next Friday.

“There’s a lot of dating violence. It’s never right to hit a woman, ever,” said Dave Stone, president of the West Coast Umpires Association, a baseball group, and a member of the West Coast Officials Association, which oversees high-school football games in Hillsborough and Pasco counties. “We want to get this message out to young men everywhere.”

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Bondi: “I will not be bullied by the press” on gay marriage

Published:
Isadora Rangel in Stuart

Attorney General Pam Bondi said she “will not be bullied by the press” for her defense of Florida’s ban on gay marriage during two campaign stops on the Treasure Coast Wednesday.

The Republican spoke to about 100 conservatives at the Kane Center in Stuart and Republican Party headquarters in Port St. Lucie, boasting her efforts to crack down on pill mills, synthetic drugs and human trafficking since taking office in 2011.

The former Hillsborough County prosecutor and state’s first female attorney general is running for re-election Nov. 4 against Democrat George Sheldon and Libertarian Bill Wohlsifer.

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Bondi: “I will not be bullied by the press” on gay marriage

Published:
Isadora Rangel in Stuart

Attorney General Pam Bondi said she “will not be bullied by the press” for her defense of Florida’s ban on gay marriage during two campaign stops on the Treasure Coast Wednesday.

The Republican spoke to about 100 conservatives at the Kane Center in Stuart and Republican Party headquarters in Port St. Lucie, boasting her efforts to crack down on pill mills, synthetic drugs and human trafficking since taking office in 2011.

The former Hillsborough County prosecutor and state’s first female attorney general is running for re-election Nov. 4 against Democrat George Sheldon and Libertarian Bill Wohlsifer.

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Patronis goes from restaurateur to lawmaker to utility regulator

Published:   |   Updated: September 18, 2014 at 02:34 PM
The Associated Press

State Rep. Jimmy Patronis has been appointed to the panel that regulates Florida utilities.

Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday named Patronis to a Public Service Commission seat that comes open in January. He also reappointed current commissioner Julie Brown to a new term.

Patronis is a Panama City Republican and vice president of Captain Anderson’s Restaurant. He is being forced to leave the Legislature due to term limits.

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Crist surrogates attack Scott on ‘swindler’ ad

Published:
James L. Rosica in Tallahassee

Don’t ask Pasco County Tax Collector Mike Fasano if he’s thinking about changing his voter registration from Republican.

“I have no intention, never,” he told reporters Thursday. “Never will I change my party affiliation. The day I turned 18, ladies and gentlemen, I registered as a Republican, a Reagan Republican.”

That would have been 1976, when Ronald Reagan eventually lost the Republican presidential nomination to Gerald Ford. That also was 14 years after Reagan changed his own registration from Democrat to Republican.

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Cohn snares a Kennedy for funder

Published:
By William March

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Crist outlines small business plan

Published:
By William March

the plan

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