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Sunburn — The Morning Read Of What’s Hot In Florida Politics — 7.26.21

Chase Kalisz brings home the first gold for the U.S. Image via AP.

By Peter Schorsch   

Happy Monday.

If you are gobbling up Olympics coverage — and chances are you’re not — you already know that Team USA had a pretty good weekend.

U.S. swimmer Chase Kalisz notched the nation’s first (and second) gold medal of the games. The 27-year-old landed the top spot in the men’s 400-meter individual medley. It was, of course, a major personal accomplishment for Kalisz, who had to settle for silver five years ago.

Faith Based Events

Sarasota is celebrating, too, after Riverview High School alumna Emma Weyant scored the silver in the women’s 400-meter individual medley final, coming in just seven-tenths of a second behind Japan’s Yui Ohashi.

It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows, though.

The U.S. men’s basketball team suffered another embarrassing L in their Olympic opener against France. Yes, the team with Kevin DurantDamian LillardBam AdebayoDraymond Green and other stars lost to … France. Can they pull it together already or is this just something that happens every fourth Olympics? Should we start watching EuroLeague?

And then there’s the women’s gymnastics squad. It’s usually the highlight of the quadrennial games (it still is, honestly) but Team Russia finished the qualifying round in the top spot. Thankfully the results don’t carry over to the finals, so there’s still a chance.

It was a bad weekend in North Florida, too.

The Capital Press Corps took a couple of blows, too. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel snagged Steve Bousquet away from the Tallahassee Democrat to take over for Rosemary O’Hara as the paper’s editorial page editor. And The Associated Press’ Bobby Caina Calvan announced he was leaving the Sunshine StateJason Delgado and Renzo Downey will miss him.

Here’s to many good weekends wherever life takes him.

Worse yet, UF Health Jacksonville CEO Leon Haley, who took a leading role in the city’s COVID-19 response, died in a tragic watercraft accident while vacationing in South Florida. Our condolences to his family.

Need a palate cleanser? We do, too. Florida man to the rescue.

The world’s worst superhero popped up in Pensacola got an early start on his weekend. He sauntered into O’Riley’s Uptown Tavern on Thursday and — as he’s wont to do — showed off his gun, accidentally shot himself then carted himself to the hospital. Ta-da!

But nobody had a better weekend than Zach Taylor, a 63-year-old plumber from Ambrose, Georgia. who won the annual Hemingway Look-Alike Contest in Key West. It’s the Florida man (or Georgia man) equivalent of winning an Elvis Look-Alike Contest in Las Vegas. Our condolences to David “Bat” Masterson of Daytona Beach, who was a six-toed cat’s paw away from the W.

 — SITUATIONAL AWARENESS —

@MicheleforFL: You (know) what my favorite thing in social media has become — is to see @michelletodd like, RT or comment. She’s a miracle and testament to God’s grace. God is amazing!

@atrupar: (DonaldTrump says the only reason he made Mark Milley chairman of the Joint Chiefs is because John Kelly and (JimMattis, both of whom worked for him, didn’t like him — so he decided to do the opposite of what they wanted

@RepKinzinger: Today, I was asked to serve on the bipartisan January 6th Select Committee, and I humbly accepted. When duty calls, I will always answer.

@SenPizzo: Nobody’s pushing the vaccine to compromise your rights, or hamper your happy hour — there’s no microchip, shedding or quackery. No one in the ICU likes “I told you so” while you’re waiting for a lung transplant. Many of us care about you, even if you hate us. Get vaccinated.

@Deggans: We’re to the point that newspapers are begging people to get vaccinated. Sigh.

@NewsGuyGreg: IF this lawsuit is successful — as similar suits so far are in other states — can FL DEO even administer these retroactive benefits? I’m dealing with people waiting MONTHS for benefits and claim issues to be cleared up.

Tweet, tweet:

@JimRosicaFL: A reminder that we’ve always been up against it. From all sides. I think the difference is, social media intensifies it now.

Tweettweet:

@JenLux: Legitimately cried a little watching an 18-year old win the first-ever gold in taekwondo this morning. Admittedly it’s the only taekwondo match I’ve ever watched … she was awesome

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