Good Thursday morning.
Health care policy expert and veteran political strategist Toby Philpot joins Floridian Partners, effective Sept. 15.
Philpot comes to Floridian Partners from the Florida Health Care Association, where he has served as chief lobbyist since September 2020. Following the 2021 Legislative Session, he was named Runner-Up In-House Lobbyist of the Year by INFLUENCE Magazine for his successful stewardship of the association’s legislative agenda.
He delivered once again in the 2022 Legislative Session by leading FHCA’s efforts to secure a historic $293 million increase in Medicaid funding for nursing center care and worked to secure the passage of legislation to modernize Florida’s staffing standards.
Before joining FHCA, Philpot spent five years as Chief of Staff for the Agency for Health Care Administration. He previously served as Chief of Staff at the Florida Lottery, political director for former Senate President Mike Haridopolos, and deputy legislative affairs director for the Florida Department of Transportation.
At Floridian Partners, Philpot will focus on growing and diversifying the firm’s health care practice.
“We are excited to add Toby’s policy and political experience to our team at Floridian Partners,” said managing partner Charles Dudley. “Toby builds on our firm’s mission of providing our clients comprehensive representation before state agencies and elected officials at the executive and legislative branches.”
Firm partner Jorge Chamizo added, “Toby’s deep understanding of health care policy, political acumen and strong work ethic will serve our clients well. We are excited to welcome him to the team.”
Continental Strategy is continuing to expand its Florida footprint with the addition of four new hires in its Tallahassee office.
Paul Hawkes, a retired judge for Florida’s 1st District Court of Appeal, joins the firm as a partner.
Hawkes was appointed to the court by former Gov. Jeb Bush in 2003 and was elected as Chief Judge by his colleagues where he led the effort to implement electronic filing — 1DCA was the first court in Florida to do so.
Continental Strategy is also bringing Tom DiGiacomo on board.
He brings to the firm over 20 years of experience working in and with state government including extensive transportation-specific industry expertise, having served as Legislative Affairs Director and Senior Policy Adviser for FDOT and Florida Turnpike, as well as Executive Director of the Florida Transportation Commission.
Ashley Spicola, an expert in Florida health care and education policy, is also heading to the firm.
After serving nine years in state government, Spicola opened her consulting business in 201. She currently serves as the Senior Relations Consultant for the Safety Net Hospital Alliance of Florida.
Finally, Continental Strategy is welcoming Brennan Garcia, who specializes in digital policy, state procurements and governmental affairs. Garcia most recently served in the Office of the State Chief Information Officer working closely with the State CIO and State CISO on multiple wide-ranging projects, including exhaustive state technology procurements to cover a $30 million budget.
“We are thrilled to expand our team in Tallahassee. Not only does this group offer diverse experience and policy expertise, but they each have extensive knowledge of the state policy and legislative process which will be a huge asset to our clients,” said Carlos Trujillo, President of Continental Strategy.
Here are some other thoughts:
— R’uh roh Republicans, it looks like the so-called “red wave” crested early. Yet another major election prognosticator — The Cook Political Report — is seeing signs that GOP success in the Midterm Elections is not guaranteed. The culprits? Bruising Primary battles, culture war issues and Donald Trump’s continued insistence that he won the 2020 Presidential Election.
— Democrats are starting to get that most dangerous of feelings: Hope. But despite their improving election odds, they’re not blind to the GOP’s massive war chest and they’re bracing for a wave of cash to flow into battleground states across the nation.
— Elections and ads go together like cream cheese and bagels, and that’s truer now than ever. According to AdImpact, campaign ad spending is projected to reach nearly $10 billion this cycle — an unpreceded figure for a Midterm Election. For context, ad spending hit $4 billion in the 2018 Midterms and $9 billion during the 2020 Presidential Election.
— Big surprise: Republicans’ and Democrats’ brains are wired differently. FiveThirtyEight provided an illuminating example of how by examining how partisans think about crime and gun violence. While it’s a top issue among voters from both parties, their interpretations are wildly different.
— What does Florida Times-Union scribe Nate Monroe think about being tailed by private eyes? In an interview with fellow veteran reporter Jim Rosica, he answered that question and spoke about other aspects of his media career. Check it out on City & State.
— SITUATIONAL AWARENESS —
—@JRubinBlogger: You know what’s never happened? A former President pleading the 5th. THIS is the cult leader R’s pine for. Okey-dokey.
—@ParkerMolloy: The FBI went to Mar-a-Lago, knocked on the door to collect boxes of classified material that Trump stole from the White House, and major news outlets all just decided to go with the term Trump used for it: raid. “Raid” makes it sound like they were breaking down doors and shit.
—@Nate_Cohn: The GOP holds MN-1 in last night’s special election, but only by a modest 4-point margin (Trump+10 district; R+3 in last House race) The signs of a Democratic rebound post-Dobbs are starting to pile up … Democrats have also trended upward on the generic congressional ballot, where they’ve reached parity with the GOP No way to know if it lasts until November, but the focus on abortion/Jan. 6 hasn’t ebbed — yet. At the same time, the news on inflation has improved for D’s … There are still some good data points for the GOP. (Joe) Biden’s approval rating is one of them. It’s entirely consistent with a ‘wave’ election. It’s not hard to explain why Democrats would be defying gravity right now, but gravity is a pretty stubborn force
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) August 10, 2022
In our new series of — Hypocrite or Fraud?…
It’s back to school for Florida today, where their Governor loves to rail against vaccine mandates.
But what he–and all the GOP leaders–fail to mention is that every single red state already mandates vaccines for their schools. pic.twitter.com/UA2LAunZou
— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) August 10, 2022
—@AndrewMoss_FL: If someone’s campaign mailer has the words “deadly serious;” it most likely means it’s the very non-serious.
—@FrankPallotta: Disney’s strong third quarter wasn’t just on the back of Disney+. The company’s parks, experiences and products unit had a very strong quarter bringing in revenues of $7.3 billion, which was up a whopping 70% over the same quarter last year.
—@AGlorios: A little sad today. Didn’t expect Olivia Newton-John’s death to affect me as much as it has. Life is so fleeting. Getting up close to that is so harrowing. It overwhelms me.
Sunburn is authored and assembled by Peter Schorsch, Phil Ammann, Daniel Dean, Renzo Downey, Jacob Ogles, and Drew Wilson.
This article originally appeared here and was republished with permission.