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Sunburn — The Morning Read Of What’s Hot In Florida Politics — 1.13.22

Tallahassee gets a preview of cookie season.

By Peter Schorsch    

Good Thursday morning.

We’re years away from a potential Donald Trump vs. Ron DeSantis primary battle, but it appears that the former President won’t wait until 2024 to take the gloves off.

During a Tuesday interview with Dan Ball of One America News, Trump laid into “a couple” of unnamed Republican politicians who had recently refused to say if they had received booster shots, calling them “gutless.”

According to Maggie Haberman of The New York Times, that was a thinly veiled barb directed at DeSantis, who refused to answer the question during a Fox News appearance last month.

“This would indicate Trump’s ‘must tell the truth’ message to me about the timing of his vaccine comments a few weeks ago were about DeSantis, who is increasingly under his skin,” she tweeted.

People close to Trump, she said, have noticed the former President taking an increasingly hostile stance toward DeSantis because the latter “won’t say the magic words,” meaning that he will not tell Trump that he will not challenge him for the Republican nomination in 2024.

Haberman added, “A smart R makes the point that Trump is not only positioning himself to get credit for a vaccine he once demanded it for, but he is trying to make DeSantis look like a ‘typical pol’ who won’t be straightforward.”

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The Florida Chamber of Commerce released its 2022 Jobs and Competitiveness Agenda, outlining the top priorities for the business community this Session.

The Florida Chamber releases its “Where We Stand” business agenda each year ahead of the Legislative Session. As in past editions, the 2022 agenda focuses on policies that the Chamber believes will help Florida’s economy become one of the 10 largest in the world by 2030.

Mark Wilson will lay out where The Chamber stands. Image via Facebook.

That does include several priorities that directly benefit businesses, such as efforts to curb litigation in the insurance market, reduce the state’s communications services tax and prevent or offset the scheduled sunset of last year’s cut to the state corporate income tax.

But the agenda also pushes for improvements that, at first glance, seem unrelated to the health of Florida’s business climate.

On education, for instance, the Chamber is signaling support for more high-quality early learning and child care opportunities for Florida children as well as initiatives that will boost kindergarten readiness from 57% today to 100% by 2030.

It also supports targeting resources at school districts that educate a disproportionate number of children who live in poverty — Chamber research shows that 15% of the state’s ZIP codes account are home to more than half of Florida children living in poverty.

Infrastructure priorities, meanwhile, include rural broadband expansion to ensure 100% of Florida residents have access to high-speed internet by the end of the decade, as well as investments in the state’s roadways, railways, airports, seaports and spaceports to accommodate growth in demand for trade, talent and visitors.

“The choices made by the Legislature matter, and the Florida Chamber is at the forefront as we prepare for Florida’s continued growth. The Florida Chamber’s Business Agenda is a set of legislative priorities that will help grow private-sector jobs, diversify our economy, and create additional economic opportunities for Floridians,” said Florida Chamber President and CEO Mark Wilson.

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Thursday is Girl Scout Day at the Capitol.

Tallahassee gets a preview of cookie season.

Girl Scouts, volunteers, and senior leadership from all six Florida Girl Scout Councils will flock to the Capitol for Girl Scout Day to raise lawmakers’ awareness of the Girl Scout mission, including building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place.

Girl Scout Day, now in its third year, also highlights the four key pillars of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience: STEM, outdoors, entrepreneurship, and life skills.

(If you’re wondering how Girl Scouts teaches entrepreneurship, my own Girl Scout, Ella Joyce, has some cookies to sell you.)

A welcome from the Girl Scout of Florida CEOs and a Gold Award Girl Scout will kick off the event in the courtyard of the Capitol building. Later, Girl Scouts will pin Florida cabinet members and legislators as honorary Girl Scout members on the steps of the Florida State Capitol Building during a special ceremony.

“Girl Scouting is an integral part of developing leadership in girls across Florida,” said Mary Anne Jacobs, CEO of Girl Scouts of Gateway Council. “This event is an opportunity to demonstrate to our elected leaders how Girl Scouts helps girls discover their untapped potential to become the leaders that our businesses, communities, and planet need.”

— SITUATIONAL AWARENESS —

@SenRickScott: .@SenateDems’ filibuster flip-flop is a political power grab focused solely on passing a radical federal takeover of America’s elections. It will ruin our democracy, not save it. I won’t stop fighting against this insanity.

@Igorbobic: The idea that Dems could have passed voting rights if only (JoeBiden pushed for it and called for rules changes earlier than he did seems like wishcasting/not based in reality, but what do I know

@EwErickson: A President with only 33% popular support wants the Senate Dems to change the Senate rules by ignoring the Senate Rules requirement of a 2/3 vote to change said rules in order to pass a voting bill designed to keep Democrats in power. But the GOP are the enemies of democracy?

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@ChicagosMayor: Earlier today, I tested positive for COVID-19. I am experiencing cold-like symptoms but otherwise feel fine, which I credit to being vaccinated and boosted. I will continue to work from home while following the CDC guidelines for isolation.

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@ShevrinJones: Let the record show that the Surgeon General of the State of Florida, the LEAD doctor in the State thought he was coming to the Healthcare Appropriations committee and not mention one word about Florida’s COVID response.🙋🏾‍♂️ we have questions, sir!!

@CarlosGSmith: Florida’s new Surgeon General came to our committee today to present @GovRonDeSantis health care budget. He made ZERO mention of COVID until I pressed him on how much Florida was planning to spend on PREVENTION. He had NO NUMBERS to offer. They have NO plan.

@KirbyWTweets: It’s been my repeated experience that @GovRonDeSantis‘ top agency officials are hustled out of legislative meetings by aides while reporters try to ask them questions. These are public officials in public meetings, and they should answer questions from journalists. Beyond the journalistic and public good implications of having to get answers from spokespeople instead of directly from officials, it’s awkward on a personal level to be forced to run alongside an important person and have your questions shouted down by an aide. Unnecessary too!

@AgloriosIn Fla. Health Care Appropriations committee, @LeaderBookFL says a Memorial hospital in South Fla. is spending $21 million *per month* on the nursing shortage. AHCA Secretary @SMarstiller says hospital budgets have been bent but not broken by the expense.

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@MikeSington: Imagine if Venus Williams acted like Novak Djokovic.

FloridaPolitics, excerpt posted on  SouthFloridaReporter.comJan. 13, 2022

Republished with permission 

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