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No bond for man facing murder charge after wife vanishes at sea

Right-wing media uses Florida school shooting as conspiracy fodder

The teenagers of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, who a week ago lost 17 of their classmates and school staff members in a mass shooting, have emerged as passionate advocates for reform, speaking openly of their anger in the hope of forcing a reckoning on guns.  But in certain right-wing corners of the web — and, increasingly, from more mainstream voices like Rush...
Trump’s ‘tougher on Russia’ claim fits a pattern of striving to one-up Obama

Trump’s ‘tougher on Russia’ claim fits a pattern of striving to one-up Obama

To hear President Donald Trump tell it, he is tougher than former president Barack Obama. He is smarter than Obama — more shrewd, more effective, more respected. The 45th president is, by his own accounting, superlative to the 44th in almost every way.  In private and in public, while devising policies and while crafting messages, Trump frequently draws flattering comparisons with his predecessor...
As Florida students head to state capital, lawmakers fail to take up assault rifle bill

As Florida students head to state capital, lawmakers fail to take up assault rifle bill

Driven by rage and grief over one of the deadliest school shootings in modern American history, students from across the country were taking action in hopes of pushing their lawmakers to rethink their positions on gun control, even as the Florida House rejected a move on Tuesday to consider a bill that would ban assault rifles.  From California to Florida, teenagers walked out of classes, stopped...
Rubio faces backlash for gun control inaction

Rubio faces backlash for gun control inaction

He called it "heartbreaking" and said he was devastated. Dozens killed or injured in a shooting rampage that shook Florida and the nation - and "deeply impacted" him as he considered his political future.  Twenty months passed. Then, it happened again. Another mass killing.  Now, Marco Rubio has become the face of congressional inaction on tougher gun restrictions, especially...
Trump tries to shift blame to Obama for not countering Russian meddling

Trump tries to shift blame to Obama for not countering Russian meddling

President Donald Trump, who spent months belittling charges that Russia meddled in the 2016 election, has managed to revive questions about how his predecessor, President Barack Obama, handled suspicions about Russia in the months before the election.  Some former Obama officials now confess to misgivings about Obama’s reluctance to act, or speak out more forcefully, even as the evidence...
Lawyer pleads guilty to lying in Russia investigation

Lawyer pleads guilty to lying in Russia investigation

The son-in-law of a Russia-based billionaire admitted Tuesday to lying to investigators about his communications with a former Trump campaign aide. The guilty plea by the defendant, a lawyer at a powerful New York-based law firm, broadened the scope of the special counsel’s inquiry into Russia’s election interference.  The lawyer, Alex van der Zwaan, a 33-year-old Dutch citizen, acknowledged...
Kushner resists losing access as Kelly tackles security clearance issues

Kushner resists losing access as Kelly tackles security clearance issues

Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is resisting giving up his access to highly classified information, prompting an internal struggle with John F. Kelly, the White House chief of staff, over who should be allowed to see some of the nation’s most sensitive secrets, according to White House officials and others briefed on the matter.  Kushner is one...
Christie: Parkland students getting a hard lesson about #thoughtsandprayers in Tallahassee

Christie: Parkland students getting a hard lesson about #thoughtsandprayers in Tallahassee

Buses pick up the kids to take them back to West Boca. West Boca High School students walked to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. (Melanie Bell / The Palm Beach Post) In the immediate aftermath of last week’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the Palm Beach Post Editorial Board quickly published an emotionally raw piece aimed at...
Trump urges ban on gun devices like bump stocks

Trump urges ban on gun devices like bump stocks

President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he has signed a memo directing the Justice Department to propose regulations to “ban all devices” like the rapid-fire bump stocks involved in last year’s Las Vegas massacre. Seeking to show action days after a deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida, Trump spoke during a White House ceremony recognizing bravery by the nation’s public...
Scott holds Parkland shooting meetings; House rejects assault gun ban

Scott holds Parkland shooting meetings; House rejects assault gun ban

A flurry of meetings took place in Florida’s capital on Tuesday in response to last week’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, with dozens of leaders in education, law enforcement, and mental health pouring into the city to participate in a trio of workshops organized by Gov. Rick Scott. Some of those same leaders were to later attend a round-table discussion hosted...
Tom Rooney: Family the factor in leaving Congress; may run for judge

Tom Rooney: Family the factor in leaving Congress; may run for judge

U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Okeechobee, said guilt about missing time with his family was a big factor in his decision not to seek a sixth term in Congress this year. Rooney said he hasn’t decided what he wants do when his term expires in January, but he mentioned the possibility of running for elections as a judge in Florida’s 19th Judicial Circuit, which is composed of Martin, St. Lucie...
Florida Medicaid program limits opioid prescriptions

Florida Medicaid program limits opioid prescriptions

As lawmakers consider proposals to limit opioid prescriptions, Gov. Rick Scott’s administration is taking steps to do the same in the Florida Medicaid program. The Agency for Health Care Administration announced last week that, effective Monday, prescriptions for narcotics in the Medicaid program will be limited to a maximum seven-day supply. Medicaid also is no longer requiring prior authorization...
Republican Trump critic Jetta ends challenge of U.S. Rep. Frankel

Republican Trump critic Jetta ends challenge of U.S. Rep. Frankel

Delray Beach businessman Kurt Jetta faced long odds in his 2018 campaign for Congress. He hoped to win the Republican nomination in District 21 as a critic of President Donald Trump. If he succeeded in that, he faced the tough task of unseating three-term U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, in a heavily Democratic district. »RELATED: The latest in Florida political news Jetta concluded...
Florida Senate, House at odds on what vote needed to raise taxes

Florida Senate, House at odds on what vote needed to raise taxes

In an issue that could be part of the mix of end-of-session negotiations, a Senate panel Tuesday approved a proposal that would make it harder to raise taxes — but didn’t go as far as House leaders and Gov. Rick Scott want. The House last month overwhelmingly approved a proposed constitutional amendment (HJR 7001) that would require two-thirds votes of both legislative chambers to raise...
Mueller investigation: Lawyer pleads guilty to lying to investigators in Russia probe

Mueller investigation: Lawyer pleads guilty to lying to investigators in Russia probe

An attorney pleaded guilty Tuesday to lying to the FBI in the agency's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and its possible ties to President Donald Trump's campaign. The charges against lawyer Alex Van Der Zwaan are the latest in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation.
National Democratic committee to give Baer help in race against Mast

National Democratic committee to give Baer help in race against Mast

Palm Beach Gardens attorney Lauren Baer is among the candidates singled out by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee to receive extra campaign support for meeting organizational and fundraising goals in the run up to this fall’s pivotal mid-term elections. Baer is taking on U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, the Palm City Republican who represents Florida District 18, which encompasses Martin,...
Rob Porter’s charisma and ambition disguised flare-ups of anger

Rob Porter’s charisma and ambition disguised flare-ups of anger

People who crossed paths with Rob Porter in Harvard classrooms or the hallways of Capitol Hill describe him in glowing terms: He was articulate enough to be secretary of state. Intelligent enough to be a Supreme Court justice. Driven enough to be president.  Until Porter resigned as a White House aide amid domestic abuse accusations, plunging the Trump administration into a scandal over the vetting...
Why Parkland students have emerged as a powerful political voice

Why Parkland students have emerged as a powerful political voice

The boldest voices to emerge in the wake of last week's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. have been unexpected ones. Surviving students at the school quickly spoke out on social media and to news cameras both about the incident and, more broadly, about political leadership which they saw as having let them down.  In the days since, those voices have only...
Trump Jr. to give foreign policy speech while on ‘unofficial’ business trip to India

Trump Jr. to give foreign policy speech while on ‘unofficial’ business trip to India

The president's eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., is making what's been dubbed an unofficial visit to India to promote his family's real estate projects. But he's also planning to deliver a foreign policy speech on Indo-Pacific relations at an event with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.  Beginning Tuesday, the junior Trump will have a full schedule of meet-and-greets with investors and business...
The Political Playbook for 2018: Get angry, then get elected

The Political Playbook for 2018: Get angry, then get elected

Mallory Hagan's Christmas was rather intense. Days before the holiday, emails about the former Miss America were made public, illuminating the abuse Hagan had absorbed at the hands of pageant officials. One email discussed her sexual partners, another ridiculed her body, saying she was preparing "for her new career . . . as a blimp in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade."  Eight weeks later...
The story behind the story: How two publications broke the Rob Porter scandal

The story behind the story: How two publications broke the Rob Porter scandal

The story seemed to begin innocuously - a tale of a White House romance, delivered in gossipy style, with the help of paparazzi who caught the attractive staffers canoodling around town.  But it gave only a hint of a darker intrigue that was percolating - as reporters for strikingly different publications chased a story about domestic abuse allegations against the male half of the couple, Rob...
For the weary White House, Florida shooting offered a ‘reprieve’ from scandals

For the weary White House, Florida shooting offered a ‘reprieve’ from scandals

The White House was under siege.   Domestic abuse allegations against a senior aide were ignored, pointing to a potential high-level coverup. Two Cabinet secretaries were caught charging taxpayers for luxury travel. A Playboy centerfold alleged an extramarital affair with the president. And the special counsel's Russia investigation was intensifying. The tumult was so intense that there...
Ron DeSantis: Enlist retired military, cops to prevent school shootings

Ron DeSantis: Enlist retired military, cops to prevent school shootings

U.S. Rep. and Republican governor candidate Ron DeSantis appearing on Fox Business Network with a West Palm Beach background behind him. U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Palm Coast, a candidate for Florida governor, says schools could enlist retired military and law enforcement officers to protect schools from mass shootings like last week’s massacre...
Trump accuser keeps telling her story, hoping someone will finally listen

Trump accuser keeps telling her story, hoping someone will finally listen

She believed her best chance to be heard was through sheer repetition, so Rachel Crooks took her seat at the dining table and prepared to tell the story again. She was used to difficult audiences, to skeptics and Internet trolls who flooded her Facebook page with threats, but this was a generous crowd: a dozen women, all friends of her aunt, gathered for a casual dinner party on a Friday night. The...
Most Americans say Trump, Congress not doing enough to stop mass shootings, Post-ABC poll finds

Most Americans say Trump, Congress not doing enough to stop mass shootings, Post-ABC poll finds

More than 6 in 10 Americans fault Congress and President Donald Trump for not doing enough to prevent mass shootings, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, with most Americans continuing to say these incidents are more reflective of problems identifying and addressing mental health issues than inadequate gun laws.    In the poll conducted after a gunman killed 17 people at a...
Trump endorses Romney for U.S. Senate seat

Trump endorses Romney for U.S. Senate seat

President Donald Trump on Monday night threw his full support behind Mitt Romney's bid to be the next U.S. senator from Utah, writing on Twitter that he would be a "worthy successor" to retiring Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah.  The endorsement is significant because Trump had previously encouraged Hatch to seek another term, and Romney had been among the most vocal Republican critics of Trump's...
Republican Trump critic Kurt Jetta quits congressional race, promises donor refunds

Republican Trump critic Kurt Jetta quits congressional race, promises donor refunds

Republican Kurt Jetta has ended his campaign for the seat of Democratic U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel. Delray Beach businessman Kurt Jetta faced a pair of difficult tasks in his 2018 campaign for Congress — winning a Republican nomination as a critic of President Donald Trump , then unseating Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, in...
Florida governor, GOP lawmakers weigh options after mass shooting

Florida governor, GOP lawmakers weigh options after mass shooting

A second gun-related bill has been postponed in the Florida Senate in the wake of last week’s mass shooting at a Parkland high school, as legislative leaders craft a multi-pronged response to the massacre and Gov. Rick Scott plans a series of workshops about school safety and ways to keep guns away from people struggling with mental illnesses. The scramble by lawmakers to react to the deaths...
Gun control could become key issue in Florida in November

Gun control could become key issue in Florida in November

An aversion to gun-rights restrictions has been a bedrock of Republican campaigns in Florida — a testing ground for model NRA-backed legislation — for years. But a 19-year-old killer, armed with a semi-automatic rifle he purchased legally and used to fatally gun down 14 students and three faculty members at a Broward County high school, may have changed that. »RELATED: The latest...
Education issues key to end of session for Florida Legislature

Education issues key to end of session for Florida Legislature

Florida lawmakers will use the last three weeks of the 2018 session to decide the fate of a number of major education bills that address everything from school bullying to teachers to university tuition. The decisions will begin unfolding Tuesday when the Senate Education Committee takes up a nearly 200-page bill (HB 7055) that is important to House leaders. The legislation includes provisions that...
Trump fumes about Russia investigation as nation mourns

Trump fumes about Russia investigation as nation mourns

As the nation mourned, President Donald Trump kept largely silent about the Florida school shooting victims and the escalating gun control debate, instead raging at the FBI for what he perceived to be a fixation on the Russia investigation at the cost of failing to deter the attack. From the privacy of Mar-a-Lago, Trump vented about the investigation in a marathon series of tweets over the weekend...
County fighting the same gender- and race-based battles 16 years later

County fighting the same gender- and race-based battles 16 years later

Sixteen years ago, when Palm Beach County was considering ending its gender- and race-based contracting assistance program, women and minority business owners warned against the move, documents obtained by The Palm Beach Post show. Women and minority business owners said their opportunities to get county contracts — already limited by what they described as a pervasive good ol’ boy system...
Trump in Palm Beach: Motorcade passes Stormy Daniels marquee en route to golf club

Trump in Palm Beach: Motorcade passes Stormy Daniels marquee en route to golf club

UPDATE 9:25 p.m.: The president has returned from his golf club in West Palm Beach to Mar-a-Lago. The president’s schedule for tomorrow, Presidents Day, is not known. UPDATE 7:28 p.m.: After being cooped up in Mar-a-Lago for two days, the president has decided to spend the evening at Trump International Golf Club, his private club in West Palm Beach. En route, the motorcade passed...
EXCLUSIVE: Parents of teen killed by Conniston classmate again try claims bill

EXCLUSIVE: Parents of teen killed by Conniston classmate again try claims bill

For years, Ashraf Kamel and his ex-wife, Marguerite Dimitri, tried to persuade Florida lawmakers to award them more of the $1.6 million verdict they won in 2002 for the 1997 shooting death of their 13-year-old son, Jean Pierre, at Conniston Middle School in West Palm Beach. They received the $200,000 statutory limit from the Palm Beach County School District after the verdict, but their hopes...
Transcript, photos: Trump, Melania, Rubio, Scott meet cops after Parkland school shooting

Transcript, photos: Trump, Melania, Rubio, Scott meet cops after Parkland school shooting

Sen. Marco Rubio (near American flag at left), first lady Melania Trump, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, President Donald Trump, Gov. Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi with first responders in Fort Lauderdale on Friday night. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) FORT LAUDERDALE — President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump...
With McCain’s retreat, some look to Romney to carry traditional GOP torch

With McCain’s retreat, some look to Romney to carry traditional GOP torch

In more ways than one, followers of traditional Republican orthodoxy are facing an emotional inflection point this week.  Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., at home battling an aggressive form of brain cancer, will not attend this weekend's Munich Security Conference, an annual gathering of foreign policy leaders from NATO nations that has become a central clearinghouse for global security matters and...
Mike Pence bought a Valentine’s Day gift for his wife at . . . CVS Pharmacy

Mike Pence bought a Valentine’s Day gift for his wife at . . . CVS Pharmacy

Hey, isn't that . . . Vice President Mike Pence, on Wednesday night dropping by a retail spot known for its selection of gifts every woman loves? The Veep was spotted on Valentine's Day making his way out of the CVS at Pennsylvania Avenue and 19th Street NW. And it seemed he hadn't just made the drugstore run for a pack of gum.  CBS White House reporter Jacqueline Alemany tweeted about the sighting...
Mnuchin calls on Congress to look into gun violence, breaking with rest of White House

Mnuchin calls on Congress to look into gun violence, breaking with rest of White House

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday called on Congress to look into issues related to gun violence less than 24 hours after 17 people were killed in a school shooting in Florida.  "I will say, personally, I think the gun violence — it's a tragedy what we've seen yesterday, and I urge Congress to look at these issues," Mnuchin said at a House Ways and Means Committee...
Oprah says people are trying to persuade her to run for president, but she hasn’t received a calling

Oprah says people are trying to persuade her to run for president, but she hasn’t received a calling

Preliminary polling showed that there was high interest among women in an Oprah Winfrey presidential candidacy in 2020. According to a Quinnipiac poll in January, women would back the former talk-show host 58 percent to 33 percent against President Trump. Men were evenly divided, with 45 percent supporting each.  But Winfrey shared that some influential men have encouraged her to consider a run...
Former GOP lawmaker’s blunt words on gun control: ‘Republicans are not going to do anything’

Former GOP lawmaker’s blunt words on gun control: ‘Republicans are not going to do anything’

As his fellow Republicans offer thoughts and prayers after yet another mass shooting, former Florida congressman David Jolly wants to burn the gun policy impasse to the ground.  "Republicans are not going to do anything on gun control," Jolly told The Washington Post on Thursday as the nation reeled from 17 deaths across the peninsula from his former district. "And history shows...
GOP leaders consider steps, including contempt, after Bannon refuses most questions

GOP leaders consider steps, including contempt, after Bannon refuses most questions

House Republican leaders are weighing "further steps" to force former top White House strategist Steve Bannon to answer investigators' questions in their probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 election — including potentially declaring him in contempt of Congress — after a Thursday interview they called "frustrating."  Bannon came to speak with the House Intelligence...
The AR-15, a symbol of America’s political gulf, is easy to use and obtain

The AR-15, a symbol of America’s political gulf, is easy to use and obtain

The AR-15, the military-style rifle that a gunman used to kill 17 people at a south Florida high school Wednesday, is at once a ferociously powerful weapon, a symbol of freedom and individualism, and an object of despairing worry about the future of democracy.  It is, depending on which political and social camp you belong to, "America's rifle," a way to "Control Your Destiny"...
The gun debate after the Florida school shooting is very quickly going nowhere

The gun debate after the Florida school shooting is very quickly going nowhere

Republican former congressman David Jolly took to CNN on Wednesday night - hours after 17 students were killed at a high school in Parkland, Florida - and delivered a commentary on gun control that has since gone viral. "There is a lot that is perhaps unknown, politically," the Floridian began, "but let's be brutally honest about what we do know, and I say this as a Republican: Republicans...
Immigration bills fail in Senate, casting doubt on whether Congress can resolve fate of ‘dreamers’

Immigration bills fail in Senate, casting doubt on whether Congress can resolve fate of ‘dreamers’

The Republican-led Senate on Thursday blocked both President Donald Trump's immigration plan and a bipartisan alternative, a failure that cast doubt on whether Congress will ever resolve the fate of hundreds of thousands of young undocumented immigrants.  In a series of afternoon votes, senators failed to muster enough votes for a Republican plan backed by Trump that would have granted legal...
Assault gun limits not even scheduled for Florida Legislature hearing

Assault gun limits not even scheduled for Florida Legislature hearing

One day after a gunman shot and killed 17 people at a South Florida high school, Senate President Joe Negron said his interest would be focused on improving school safety and access to mental health treatment – not restricting gun laws. At a press conference Thursday afternoon, Negron, R-Stuart, said there could be some interest among senators in increasing the $40 million it has already carved...
After Broward shooting Florida senator seeks school mental-health cash

After Broward shooting Florida senator seeks school mental-health cash

Less than 24 hours after a troubled gunman killed 17 people — most of them teenagers — at a Broward County high school, a top state senator released a plan Thursday to steer $100 million to public schools for mental-health screening and services and to boost funding for school safety programs. Sen. Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, is also exploring what, if anything, lawmakers can do to prevent...
Watch Florida Sens. Bill Nelson, Marco Rubio address Parkland mass shooting

Watch Florida Sens. Bill Nelson, Marco Rubio address Parkland mass shooting

Republican Sen. Marco Rubio (left) and Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) Florida Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and Republican Sen. Marco Rubio both gave Senate speeches today addressing Wednesday’s mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland that left 17 people dead. Here is Nelson’s speech: And here...
Reader Point of View: Broward school shooting lifts suburban affluence’s veil of safety

Reader Point of View: Broward school shooting lifts suburban affluence’s veil of safety

A father kisses his daughter after a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland on Wednesday. (Greg Lovett / The Palm Beach Post) As grieving parents, and former classmates and colleagues of those who died during Wednesday’s mass shooting at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland struggle with the aftermath of the horrific event, dozens of...
Here’s how Trump has used Twitter to oppose gun control. Will he do so after Broward shooting?

Here’s how Trump has used Twitter to oppose gun control. Will he do so after Broward shooting?

For years President Donald Trump has used Twitter to express his condolences after mass shootings and opinions on gun control.  The president has tweeted three times about the mass shooting at a high school in Parkland yesterday. None of the tweets mention gun control or banning assault rifles, like the gun used in the shooting Wednesday. As of 7:45 a.m. today, neither of the president&rsquo...
Maldives crisis could stir trouble between China and India

Maldives crisis could stir trouble between China and India

As the Maldives’ autocratic president, Abdulla Yameen, cracks down on opposition to consolidate power before another election, analysts and diplomats warn that the small nation’s troubles could provoke a larger crisis that draws in China and India, which have long competed for influence in the Indian Ocean region.  Yameen, who this month declared a state of emergency and rounded up...
How one Congressman is responding to bad press

How one Congressman is responding to bad press

There are many ways elected officials can respond to criticism from their local newspaper: A letter to the editor. A call to the publisher. A tweet. Or they can just ignore it.  Rep. Devin Nunes, the California Republican at the center of the storm over the release of a classified memorandum challenging the FBI investigation of President Donald Trump and Russia, has come up with a response particularly...
Trump’s military parade could cost $30 million

Trump’s military parade could cost $30 million

President Donald Trump’s military parade will not come cheap.  Mick Mulvaney, the White House budget director, estimated Wednesday that the public display of America’s military might that Trump has called for could cost between $10 million and $30 million, and said the government would have to come up with a way to cover the cost.  Funding for the parade was not included in the...
Romney to announce bid for U.S. Senate seat in Utah

Romney to announce bid for U.S. Senate seat in Utah

Mitt Romney plans to announce his long-expected U.S. Senate bid on Thursday in his adopted state of Utah with a low-key rollout intended to duck roiling Republican divisions and avoid signaling that he will play the role of foil to President Donald Trump.  Wednesday night, however, Romney said he would delay Thursday's announcement because of the Florida school shooting in which at least 17 people...
Trump, a week after Porter resigned, says he’s “totally opposed” to spousal abuse

Trump, a week after Porter resigned, says he’s “totally opposed” to spousal abuse

One week after Rob Porter, his staff secretary, resigned amid spousal abuse allegations, President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he was “totally opposed to domestic violence,” his first condemnation of the alleged conduct behind a scandal that has engulfed the White House.  His statement, which members of both parties had said was long overdue, came as John F. Kelly, Trump&rsquo...
White House admits it knew of red flags in aide’s record

White House admits it knew of red flags in aide’s record

The White House changed its story on Tuesday about how it handled allegations of spousal abuse against Rob Porter, the staff secretary who resigned in disgrace last week, conceding that the FBI told White House career officials last summer about problems in Porter’s background check. But members of President Donald Trump’s team said top advisers in the West Wing were kept in the dark. ...
With deadline looming, Senate making no progress on immigration bill

With deadline looming, Senate making no progress on immigration bill

Democrats and Republicans are maneuvering to blame each other for any failure to resolve the fate of hundreds of thousands of young immigrants, as the Senate inches toward votes on various immigration proposals that all appear to lack enough support to pass.  President Trump issued a statement Wednesday saying he would oppose any plan that fell short of a bill sponsored by Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley...
Trump threatens to veto immigration bills that don’t meet his demands

Trump threatens to veto immigration bills that don’t meet his demands

President Donald Trump on Wednesday called on lawmakers to oppose a series of bipartisan efforts to address immigration and resolve the fate of young immigrants brought to the country illegally as children, demanding fealty to his hard-line approach and increasing the odds of political gridlock as the Senate debates the issue.  Senators in both parties are racing against a self-imposed, end-of-the-week...
Lake Point Restoration wins $4.3 million judgment against Hurchalla

Lake Point Restoration wins $4.3 million judgment against Hurchalla

It was a showdown with Florida flair — a Martin County business with billionaire backing versus a 77-year-old environmentalist with a constitution as tough as Dade County Pine. For eight days, the case of mining company Lake Point Restoration against storied Everglades protector Maggy Hurchalla played out in front of a jury asked to decide whether their conflict was that of a company wronged...
Corcoran, Gillum debate immigration, ‘sanctuary cities’ in Tallahassee

Corcoran, Gillum debate immigration, ‘sanctuary cities’ in Tallahassee

In a production filled with political theater, a Democratic candidate for governor and a legislative leader who’s toying with a run for the same office took the stage Tuesday night in a debate over immigration and “sanctuary cities.” Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and House Speaker Richard Corcoran, a Republican who hasn’t announced whether he’s in the gubernatorial...
Democrat wins Trump district in special Florida House election

Democrat wins Trump district in special Florida House election

Democrat Margaret Good won a special Florida House election in Republican Sarasota County on Tuesday night in a race that drew national attention as the latest indicator of a potential Democratic anti-Donald Trump wave in the 2018 midterm elections. In state House District 72, where Republicans have a 9-point registration advantage and Trump won in 2016, liberal Good got 52.2 percent to 44.8 percent...
House Oversight Committee launches probe into Rob Porter's employment

House Oversight Committee launches probe into Rob Porter's employment

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is investigating the White House’s employment of staff secretary Rob Porter in the wake of allegations that he abused his two ex-wives, committee chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-South Carolina, said Wednesday. Porter submitted his resignation Feb. 2. Gowdy told CNN that the committee launched a probe Tuesday night into Porter’s employment...
Bill Clinton’s frequent Florida appearances could be a #MeToo casualty

Bill Clinton’s frequent Florida appearances could be a #MeToo casualty

Bill Clinton at an October 2016 appearance in Belle Glade for Hillary Clinton. (Damon Higgins/The Palm Beach Post) Former President Bill Clinton has been a frequent election-year presence in Palm Beach County and elsewhere in Florida — stumping for such Democrats as Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Charlie Crist, Patrick Murphy, Lois Frankel and ...
Fake news and bots may be worrisome, but their political power is overblown

Fake news and bots may be worrisome, but their political power is overblown

How easy is it to change people’s votes in an election?  The answer, a growing number of studies conclude, is that most forms of political persuasion seem to have little effect at all.  This conclusion may sound jarring at a time when people are concerned about the effects of the false news articles that flooded Facebook and other online outlets during the 2016 election. Observers...
A former pharmaceutical executive is running for Senate in New Jersey

A former pharmaceutical executive is running for Senate in New Jersey

Bob Hugin, a former pharmaceutical executive, announced he is running for the Republican nomination for Senate here Tuesday, giving Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez a deep-pocketed potential challenger as he seeks re-election after federal corruption charges against him were dropped.  Hugin, 63, was a top executive at New Jersey-based Celgene for nearly 20 years and has been exploring a bid for...
Trump’s infrastructure plan emphasizes private funding over public interest

Trump’s infrastructure plan emphasizes private funding over public interest

President Donald Trump’s $200 billion plan to rebuild America upends the criteria that have long been used to pick ambitious federal projects, putting little emphasis on how much an infrastructure proposal benefits the public and more on finding private investors and other outside sources of money.  Unveiled Monday, the infrastructure program that Trump has championed since the campaign...
Longtime Trump attorney says he made $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels with his money

Longtime Trump attorney says he made $130,000 payment to Stormy Daniels with his money

A longtime personal attorney for President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he paid $130,000 to an adult-film star who had told people she had an affair with Trump a decade before he won the presidency.  Michael Cohen, who had previously dismissed stories about the payment, said he paid Stormy Daniels - whose real name is Stephanie Clifford - using his own money, rather than involving the Trump...
White House let Rob Porter keep job even after receiving final FBI report

White House let Rob Porter keep job even after receiving final FBI report

The FBI director, Christopher A. Wray, said on Tuesday that the bureau delivered final results in January of its background investigation into Rob Porter, the staff secretary who resigned in disgrace amid spousal abuse allegations. But the White House allowed Porter to continue serving in his post until the accusations surfaced publicly in press reports last week.  In testimony on Capitol Hill...
White House reels as FBI director contradicts official claims about alleged abuser

White House reels as FBI director contradicts official claims about alleged abuser

The White House struggled Tuesday to contain a widening crisis over its handling of domestic violence allegations against a senior official, as it reeled from sworn testimony by the FBI chief that directly contradicted what President Donald Trump's aides had presented as the official version of events.  FBI Director Christopher Wray told the Senate Intelligence Committee that the agency completed...
Russia sees midterm elections as chance to sow fresh discord, intelligence chiefs warn

Russia sees midterm elections as chance to sow fresh discord, intelligence chiefs warn

As the midterm elections approach, Russia is likely to throw more propaganda at Americans, using people sympathetic to their messages and fake personalities on social media — many of them run by bots — to sow further political and social divisions in the United States, the top U.S. intelligence officials said Tuesday.  The intelligence chiefs warned the Senate Intelligence Committee...
Big Republican advantages are eroding in the race for House control

Big Republican advantages are eroding in the race for House control

The Democratic advantage on the generic congressional ballot has slipped over the last few weeks. But Republicans have gradually lost advantages of their own.  Slowly but surely, the considerable structural advantages — like incumbency, geography and gerrymandering — that give the Republicans a chance to survive a so-called wave election are fading, giving Democrats a clearer path...
Trump rewrites GOP playbook in his own image

Trump rewrites GOP playbook in his own image

President Donald Trump is remaking the Republican economic playbook in his own image, abandoning ideological consistency in favor of a debt-busting strategy that will upend how Washington taxes and spends trillions of dollars each year.  After pushing a $1.5 trillion tax cut through Congress late last year, the president last week signed a two-year budget deal that lifts federal spending caps...
Wave watch: Democrat wins Trump district in Sarasota special election

Wave watch: Democrat wins Trump district in Sarasota special election

Democrat Margaret Good won a special state House election in a Sarasota district that President Donald Trump carried in 2016. Democrat Margaret Good won a special state House election in Republican Sarasota County on Tuesday night in a race that drew national attention as the latest indicator of a potential Democratic anti- Donald Trump wave in the 2018 midterm...
Legislature 2018: Sparks fly on repeal of fireworks restrictions

Legislature 2018: Sparks fly on repeal of fireworks restrictions

A proposal to repeal Florida’s longstanding restrictions on the sale of fireworks remains alive in the House after lawmakers Tuesday addressed some safety concerns raised by industry giants fighting the change. The House Commerce Committee voted 15-11 to support the measure (HB 6037), which would repeal a prohibition on the sale and use of fireworks. Bill sponsor James Grant, R-Tampa, argued...

School voucher tax credits comprise 46% of Florida House tax cut plan

Farmers, nursing homes and property owners impacted by Hurricane Irma could receive tax relief as part of a $332.7 million package that will be introduced Wednesday in the Florida House. The package (PCB WMC 18-03), which will be rolled out in the House Ways & Means Committee, will be built on education-related tax credits, a reduction in a commercial-lease tax and sales tax “holidays&rsquo...
DeSantis’ strong debut trails Putnam in Florida governor money chase

DeSantis’ strong debut trails Putnam in Florida governor money chase

Backed by President Donald Trump’s Twitter account and a finance team that includes Sheldon Adelson and other national Republican heavyweights, U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis turned in an impressive debut fundraising month in his quest for Florida governor. But DeSantis collected less new money in January than Republican Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, according to reports filed this week. DeSantis&rsquo...
Moscow might rename the street that houses the U.S. embassy ‘North American Dead End’

Moscow might rename the street that houses the U.S. embassy ‘North American Dead End’

It's not exactly the Cold War. But things are heating up between the United States and Russia over something very silly: the name of the streets that house each other's embassies.  Back in January, District of Columbia city officials voted unanimously to rename the street on which the Russian embassy sits. On Jan. 10, the street was redubbed Boris Nemtsov, after a slain Russian democracy activist...
How Trump plans to turn $200 billion into $1.5 trillion in infrastructure spending

How Trump plans to turn $200 billion into $1.5 trillion in infrastructure spending

President Donald Trump’s long-awaited infrastructure plan proposes that the federal government put up $200 billion in incentives and investments over 10 years, leaving state and local governments and private industry to come up with the rest.  Here’s a look at how the plan may pan out, and what the challenges will be in turning $200 billion into $1.5 trillion.  The premise is...
Trump administration proposes 8 percent budget cut at National Weather Service, reduction in staff

Trump administration proposes 8 percent budget cut at National Weather Service, reduction in staff

Fresh on the heels of the costliest year on record for weather disasters, with economic damages exceeding $300 billion in the U.S., the Trump administration has proposed cutting the National Weather Service's budget by about 8 percent. It also recommends eliminating 355 jobs at the agency, including 248 forecasting positions  The overall budget decrease for fiscal 2019 totals just over $75 million...
Omarosa on Pence: ‘He thinks Jesus tells him to say things’

Omarosa on Pence: ‘He thinks Jesus tells him to say things’

Former reality star turned White House aide turned reality star Omarosa is still going strong — and spilling tea — as a contestant on "Celebrity Big Brother."  On Monday night's episode Omarosa, who previously declared on the show that she wouldn't vote for Donald Trump again "in a million years," said that a Mike Pence administration would actually be worse. ...
Obamas’ portraits aren’t the first to draw mixed reviews

Obamas’ portraits aren’t the first to draw mixed reviews

Just a few hours since the Obamas' portraits were officially unveiled at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington the keyboard critics wasted no time chiming in. It doesn't look like her! It's beautiful. What's up with the bush?  Who knew a presidential portrait could draw so much fire and fury? Actually, we all knew. The official canvas snapshots of each commander in chief have been easy...
Trump: U.S. expenditures in Middle East have been ‘a mistake’

Trump: U.S. expenditures in Middle East have been ‘a mistake’

President Donald Trump said Monday that U.S. aid expenditures in the Middle East were "a mistake," undercutting Secretary of State Rex Tillerson as he pursues a round of complicated diplomacy in Arab capitals this week.  The president's erroneous claim that the United States has spent $7 trillion in the Middle East over the past 17 years signals a return to a frequent theme for Trump...
Trump’s budget hits poor Americans the hardest

Trump’s budget hits poor Americans the hardest

President Donald Trump proposed a budget Monday that hits the poorest Americans the hardest, slashing billions of dollars in food stamps, health insurance and federal housing subsidies while pushing legislation to institute broad work requirements for families receiving housing vouchers, expanding on moves by some states to require Medicaid and food stamp recipients to work.  The Trump budget...
White House declines to provide detailed account of aide’s firing over abuse allegations

White House declines to provide detailed account of aide’s firing over abuse allegations

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders struggled Monday to explain the administration's shifting response to spousal abuse allegations against former senior aide Rob Porter, providing answers in the daily press briefing that were incomplete or that conflicted with the accounts of other aides or previous White House comments.  Sanders would not provide detailed answers on why a senior...
White House divided over aide’s departure amid claims of abuse

White House divided over aide’s departure amid claims of abuse

The furor over spousal abuse allegations that forced the resignation of one of President Donald Trump’s top advisers last week has exposed fissures within the White House that had been papered over since John Kelly took over last summer as chief of staff with a mandate to end the dysfunction.  Aides to the president said they remained confused and upset over the handling of the accusations...
Rival Democrats Pam Keith, Lauren Baer spar over clip in campaign video

Rival Democrats Pam Keith, Lauren Baer spar over clip in campaign video

Democrat Pam Keith’s congressional District 18 primary foe, Lauren Baer, appears briefly in a new Keith campaign video. Democrat  Lauren Baer‘s congressional campaign isn’t pleased that Baer shows up briefly in a new campaign video by her Democratic primary rival,  Pam Keith. Keith’s campaign says the concern over the video suggests...
Florida governor money chase: Putnam outraises DeSantis in first head-to-head month

Florida governor money chase: Putnam outraises DeSantis in first head-to-head month

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, shown campaigning for governor in Riviera Beach last year, remains the top fundraiser in the 2018 race for governor. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis‘ campaign for Florida governor has the Twitter backing of President Donald Trump and a finance team that...
Florida House debates changing how university performance cash awarded

Florida House debates changing how university performance cash awarded

The House is taking another look at performance standards for state universities, after supporters of some schools, including Florida A&M University, say they are being shortchanged in a system that denies extra funding to the “bottom three” universities. Currently, universities compete annually for a pot of state performance money that is awarded after the schools are ranked by the system&rsquo...
Bill advances to keep Florida in daylight saving time year-round

Bill advances to keep Florida in daylight saving time year-round

Most of the Panhandle would remain an hour behind the rest of the state under a revamped Senate proposal that would seek congressional approval to put Florida on year-round daylight-saving time. The Commerce and Tourism Committee voted unanimously Monday to support a bill (SB 858) to keep Floridians from having to reset their clocks twice a year. Before the vote, bill sponsor Greg Steube, R-Sarasota...
Florida Senate continues looking for gambling deal

Florida Senate continues looking for gambling deal

A key player in negotiations between the Legislature and the Seminole Tribe said he expects “significant progress” on a potential gambling deal in the next few days, as lawmakers rush to reach consensus on — and pass — a sweeping proposal before the session ends on March 9. “We will have what I call a more formal proposal (from the tribe) this week, to take into consideration...
Rick Scott: Lake Okeechobee dike proposal shows Trump’s ‘commitment to me’

Rick Scott: Lake Okeechobee dike proposal shows Trump’s ‘commitment to me’

Gov. Rick Scott and Donald Trump when Trump was president-elect in 2016. After Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson claimed credit last week for President Donald Trump‘s proposal to accelerate repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dike around Lake Okeechobee, Republican Gov. Rick Scott today said the pledge reaffirms Trump’s “commitment to me&rdquo...
Trump takes ‘shackles’ off ICE, which is slapping them on immigrants who thought they were safe

Trump takes ‘shackles’ off ICE, which is slapping them on immigrants who thought they were safe

A week after he won the election, President Donald Trump promised that his administration would round up millions of immigrant gang members and drug dealers. And after he took office, arrests by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers surged 40 percent.  Officials at the agency commonly known as ICE praise Trump for putting teeth back into immigration enforcement, and they say their agency...
Rex Tillerson kicks off Middle East trip in Egypt

Rex Tillerson kicks off Middle East trip in Egypt

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrived in Cairo on Sunday, beginning a swing through the Middle East as it grapples with political turmoil and military clashes that threaten to undermine his ability to ease the rising tensions.  Tillerson was already facing a series of confrontational talks at almost every stop on his five-country tour. The strains grew even more taut when Egypt launched an...
Reliable Source: President Trump and Melania Trump spotted at dinner together

Reliable Source: President Trump and Melania Trump spotted at dinner together

Hey, isn't that ... President Donald Trump and wife Melania spending a rare night out on the town?  On Saturday, POTUS and FLOTUS were spotted having a date night at BLT Prime by David Burke, the steakhouse inside Trump International Hotel, which is just a few blocks from the White House. The telltale sign that something was afoot? A huge Secret Service presence. Our source had to make it past...
In big reversal, new Trump budget will give up on longtime GOP goal of eliminating deficit

In big reversal, new Trump budget will give up on longtime GOP goal of eliminating deficit

President Donald Trump on Monday will offer a budget plan that falls far short of eliminating the government's deficit over 10 years, conceding that huge tax cuts and new spending increases make this goal unattainable, three people familiar with the proposal said.  Eliminating the budget deficit over 10 years has been a North Star for the Republican Party for several decades, and GOP lawmakers...
First-class travel distinguishes Pruitt’s EPA tenure

First-class travel distinguishes Pruitt’s EPA tenure

Just days after helping orchestrate the United States' exit from a global climate accord last June, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt embarked on a whirlwind tour aimed at championing President Trump's agenda at home and abroad.  On Monday, June 5, accompanied by his personal security detail, Pruitt settled into his $1,641.43 first-class seat for a short flight from the...
How Mattis succeeds with Trump

How Mattis succeeds with Trump

Throughout his 40-year career as a Marine, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis built a reputation as an aggressive warrior, leading a blitz on Baghdad and pushing a reluctant Obama administration to hit back against Iran.  Over the past year, he has learned to play a different role: acting as a check on an impulsive president.  The big question is how long Mattis can continue to act as a force...
Trump ‘not actively looking’ for Kelly replacement, Conway says

Trump ‘not actively looking’ for Kelly replacement, Conway says

Senior White House aides insisted Sunday that President Donald Trump retains confidence in Chief of Staff John Kelly in the midst of staff turmoil and said the president is not looking to replace the retired four-star general hired six months ago with a mandate to corral chaos.  "I spoke with the president last night about this very issue, and he wanted me to re-emphasize to everyone, including...
Trump’s big infrastructure plan has a lot of detail on everything but how to pay for it

Trump’s big infrastructure plan has a lot of detail on everything but how to pay for it

President Donald Trump is poised to unveil a long-awaited plan Monday that aims to stimulate $1.5 trillion in new spending on the country's ailing infrastructure over the coming decade, but many lawmakers in both parties say the president isn't providing a viable way to pay for his initiative.  A year in the making, the proposal is an attempt to fulfill a marquee campaign promise and would rely...
Corcoran ‘sanctuary state’ ad draws fire from Dems Gillum, Levine

Corcoran ‘sanctuary state’ ad draws fire from Dems Gillum, Levine

Democrats are decrying an ad by House Speaker Richard Corcoran’s PAC that depicts an illegal immigrant shooting an innocent woman. Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land-O’Lakes, is not an announced candidate for governor, but his recent TV ad pledging that he won’t allow Florida to become a “sanctuary state” for illegal...
Florida poll: Who are these people running for governor?

Florida poll: Who are these people running for governor?

Florida governor candidates, from left: Republicans Adam Putnam, Ron DeSantis, Richard Corcoran; Democrats Gwen Graham, Andrew Gillum, Philip Levine, Chris King. An overwhelming majority of Florida voters haven’t heard of any of the Republican or Democratic candidates for governor, according to a University of North Florida poll released today. The poll...
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