Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Sunshine State Or Cesspool State, Florida Has 25 Congressional Races Set


Florida has 25 congressional districts, all gerrymandered, mostly by state legislators drawing the boundaries to suit their own strengths and weaknesses for congressional runs the following year. For all the pristine white beaches and clear blue skies, Florida politics is one of the most corrupt cesspools in America. Friday was qualifying day for the next round of elections. There are only five simple, straightforward races pitting one Democrat against one Republican-- in the 7th (a northern district that covers the coast between St Augustine and Daytona Beach and swings inland to Altamonte Springs east of Orlando) where lunatic fringe wing-nut John Mica is being challenged by Democrat Heather Beaven; the 10th in Pinellas County (minus St
Petersburg) where Charlie Justice is taking on doddering Bill Young, long one of Congress' most egregiously corrupt members; the Miami-Dade district (18) where Ileana Ros-Lehtinen is being challenged by Rolando Banciella; the 19th where newly elected Ted Deutch (he replaced Wexler in a special 2 weeks ago); and the 23rd, where Democrat Alcee Hastings is being challenged by Bernard Sansaricq.

Only one congressman, inexplicably, has no challenger-- no primary, no Democrat, no teabagger, no nothing-- and that's an open seat, no less. Lincoln Diaz-Balart has decided to spend all his time plotting to become the president of post-Castro Cuba, so he isn't running in the 21st CD, a fairly-- but not overwhelmingly-- safe Republican seat. Instead his stupider and younger brother Mario fled from the increasingly blue 25th CD (we'll get to that shortly) and is running for his brother's seat. It's another mark of the pathetic nature of the Florida GOP that they couldn't even manage to get someone to challenge Mario, who, after all, is not and incumbent (but will be from here on out). So Mario is the only Republican in the Florida congressional delegation home free with no challenge.

But he certainly isn't the only Republican with no Democrat running against him. Karen Thurman's less than vibrant party may look good relative to the staggeringly hideous freak show known as the Republican Party of Florida, but... by any other standard, it's struggling to appear like a modern political party. CD-1 in the Panhandle is the home of right-wing ideologue Jeff Miller, a laughing stock in Washington, but facing only 2 independents, Joe Cantrell and John Krause, in November. Many insist Ander Crenshaw in demonstrably stupider and more fanatic than Miller. His district, the 4th CD, crawls along the Georgia border starting just east of Tallahassee and ending just north of Jacksonville, carefully avoiding any urban areas that might not appreciate Crenshaw's peculiar brand of bigotry mixed with an IQ so minimal that it might not be measurable in any meaningful way. His only opponent in November will be an independent, Troy Dwayne Stanley. Most political observers would probably vote Cliff Stearns the least effective Republican in the Florida congressional delegation. He almost makes Miller and Crenshaw look brainy and serious. The Democrats couldn't find anyone to run against him in his landlocked, city-less district south of Crenshaw's and carefully skirting any areas touched by the 21st Century. He has a Republican primary challenger, Don Browning, and will then face Steve Schonberg, an Independent, in November.

Before I get to the races where there's some chance for a party flip-- or at least some kind of activity-- let's just go down the list where the races are just pro-forma. Corrine Brown has a primary opponent, Scott Fortune, for her safe Jacksonville/Gainesville seat and will then face the winner of a GOP primary between Mike Yost and Chris Nwasike, plus an independent, Terry Martin-Black.

I'd rate Kathy Castor, who represents Tampa (11th CD) as safe, although she's drawn 5 Republicans fighting it out amongst each other to see who she will defeat in November.

The Republicans, wisely, decided not to waste money running someone for Kendrick Meek's open seat (CD-17), which boasts a PVI of D+35. The primary features 9 Democrats and is likely to be won by state Senator Frederica Wilson, who will then face an independent, Roderick Vereen. The 8 Democrats Wilson faces in the primary for America's most Haitian district, are Marleine Bastien, Phillip Brutus, James Bush III, Scott Galvin, Shirley Gibson, Rudolph “Rudy” Moise, Yolly Roberson and Andre Williams. I guess anything can happen when there are that many candidates in a low turn-out primary.

Unfortunately sleazy sugar cane shill and DCCC power-monger Debbie Wasserman Schultz has no primary. Three Republicans will battle it out between themselves and she'll slaughter whichever one wins, along with two independents, Stanley Blumenthal and Bob Kunst.

In the 15th CD Bill Posey faces Democrat Shannon Robert. And now for the more complicated races.

Let's start with the 25th CD way down south where Mario Diaz-Balart is giving up the seat for safer ground. Joe Garcia almost beat him-- despite assistance for Diaz-Balart from the nefarious Wasserman Schultz-- in 2008. This year Wasserman Schultz is on Garcia's side but even more helpful for him will be an official Tea Party candidate who qualified, Roly Arrojo. That should kill whatever chances David Rivera had to take the seat. (Rivera has 2 Republican opponents in the primary, Paul Crespo and Mariana “Marli” Cancio.) Garcia will have no trouble beating his own primary opponent, Luis Meurice. And then, besides the official teabagger, there's also a FWP running, Craig Porter.

Way back up the peninsula to the Panhandle, we're at CD-02 when Blue Dog Allen Boyd is fighting it out with another conservative, terming-out state Senator Al Lawson in a tough primary. Boyd would have to be evaluated as an "F"-- and he was after all, the only Democrat Bush could get to sign on to conservative's never-dying #1 priority: a bill to destroy Social Security. Lawson is unlikely to be even a little better. There are 5 Republicans who smell blood in the water-- Eddie Henry, Ronald McNeil, Barbara Olschner, David Scholl and Steve Southerland. Whoever wins the two primaries will battle it out, along
with two independents, Paul McKain and Dianne Berryhill.

One of Boyd's most recent sins has been trying to foist another worthless reactionary Blue Dog on voters, in the form of Lori Edwards. Edwards is challenging progressive, grassroots Democrat Doug Tudor in the 12th CD (Polk and Hillsborough counties east of St. Petersburg), the seat being abandoned by right-wing imbecile Adam Putnam for a run at statewide office. Aside from Edwards, Doug will have to contend with 2 other conservatives-- whichever Republican wins the primary between shady attorney Dennis Ross and extremist John Lindsey, Jr.-- plus Randy Wilkinson, the official Tea Party
candidate. Wilkinson should probably guarantee a victory for Tudor in the general election. (Please consider helping Tudor here at Blue America.)

The 5th CD just opened up, when Ginny Brown-Waite faced up to the fact that her mental illness would no longer allow her to pretend to be able to work for her constituents. She endorsed Sheriff Rich Nugent on the last day of filing to prevent any more reasonable candidates to jump into the race beyond the already-qualified Jason Patrick Sager. The winner of the GOP primary will face ex-Republican/Obama supporter Jim Piccillo in November.

One of the most watched races will be in Orlando's 8th CD where the GOP will attempt to take out the most important new player the Democrats have playing for them nationally, Alan Grayson. There is a concerted effort to denigrate him-- with the local right-wing corporate media leading the charge-- but Grayson is immensely popular with the regular folks who live in the increasingly blue district and has been lucky enough to draw a GOP primary that resembles a 7 ring circus of third and fourth tier rejects-- Ross Bieling, mediocre state legislators Kurt Kelly and Daniel Webster, Hate Talk Radio host Todd Long, racist maniac Daniel Roy Fanelli, William O'Donoughue and Patricia Sullivan. It's a real clown show and free-for-all and whoever wins the GOP endorsement will then have to face not just Grayson (who polls better than any of them among Republicans) but also an official Tea Party candidate, Peg Dunmire, and an independent, George Metcalfe. (It's worth mentioning that as crazy and ignorant as Dunmire has already shown herself, Fanelli seems determined to prove he's even more ignorant and more bigoted and less qualified. It should be a wonderfully amusing race.) Please consider helping Grayson build his war-chest through Blue America.

There are two Democrats, Anita de Palma and Phil Hindahl, fighting it out to see who takes on Gus Bilirakis in the 9th CD. The 13th CD will feature a primary between incumbent Vern Buchanan and Don Baldauf and one between Democrats Rick Eaton and James Golden and whomever wins the two primaries will also face progressive independent Jan Schneider.

The 14th CD is the worst hit in Florida-- and the U.S.-- by the Republican foreclosure crisis but Connie Mack IV is probably safe, though he faces Democrat Jim Roach and independent William Maverick St. Claire.

The ill-starred 16th CD is probably safe for wealthy moron Tom Rooney, the teabagger candidate, Jim Horn, having declared himself a Democrat at the last second. He'll face Ed Tautiva in a Democratic primary.

The 22nd District is called a swing district and moderate Democrat Ron Klein seems to be having a tough time with Ron Paul Republican Allen West (who still has to beat a more mainstream Republican, David Brady). Klein also has a primary challenge, from Paul Renneisen.

And that brings us to one of the least deserving of re-election of the freshmen, corporate shill Suzanne Kosmas, a putative Democrat representing the 24th CD in central Florida. She has a primary from party activist Paul Partyka and then will face the winner of a 5 candidate GOP primary. Everyone senses she is extremely weak and generally disliked by constituents on both sides of the partisan divide. The party is unlikely to fight too hard for her since her seat is likely to be redistricted out of existence anyway.

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At 9:08 AM, Blogger Richard said...

DownWithTyranny, that's a catchy name, I can tell one thing from your comments, you were brought up on to many Hollywood movies were the good guys wear white hats and the bad guys wear black hats. There is no doubt that you view the Democrats as the good guys and the Republicans as the bad guys. If your comments on the 8th CD are indicative of your knowledge of all these races then you obviously have a lot to learn. All the accolades you heap on Al Grayson are entirely inaccurate and humorous. The only concerted effort to denigrate him are generated by his own bizarre behavior. What ever lead you to believe he is immensely popular with the "regular folks"? He has done noting for this district other than bring home a few bobbles as bribes and the voters realize this fact. These same voters are chaffing at the bit to boot him out in November. The only person in this race that actually has captured the imagination and support of the "regular folk" is conservative Republican Patricia Sullivan. As the only candidate to turn in over 5000 signed petitions to get on the ballot she stand alone as the obvious choice of the people.

At 9:34 AM, Anonymous mdutch1 said...

I don't know where you get your facts but most of the 8th CD does not like nor appreciate Alan Dis-grayson. He will be voted out in November due to his behavior in and out of Congress. The voters are anxiously awaiting the November election to vote Patricia Sullivan in as our next representative.

At 9:48 AM, Blogger Gail said...

WOW Richard, I was going to say pretty much the same thing, LOL I thought at first this might have been some serious article, The whole down with Tyranny had me too.
I like Patricia Sullivan for district 8 Keep fighting the good fight. Patricia Sullivan for congress.com A true Patriot not Politician.

At 10:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting choice of words “…clown show…” Have you listen to or seen Grayson (the Mouth) rant and rave? The only thing he is missing s the red nose and large ears. He only represents the far left and those of the far left currently in Washington DC (Pelosi, Reed and Obama, etal). The primaries will sort out the Republicans running to unseat Grayson. The winner will be Patricia Sullivan, and the 8th district can then start to Change to a fiscally conservative approach to our Federal government.

James K

At 10:42 AM, Anonymous mountdoravoter said...

You've got it all wrong about the 8th district. Alan Grayson is history. His disgraceful and arrogant behavior has totally alienated the people of his district. The tide is turning quickly and solidly to Patricia Sullivan, a conservative patriot, not a politician, who will win the votes to unseat DisGrayson in November. You should research your information a little more carefully

At 4:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can't come up with anything good to say about Alan Grayson. Can't come up with anything bad to say about Patricia Sullivan. Check her out at www.patrciasullivanforcongress.com

At 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is amusing for an adult to read your drivel. How opinionated and biased your article is. Is that what you would call newsworthy? I always thought factual information was news, not the opining of an narrow minded name caller who obviously does not fraternize with decent people and thereby develops such a hateful attitude towards those who think differently from self. Go sell hamburgers at Wendy's. You are more suited for that kind of job.

At 8:45 PM, Anonymous American Patriot said...

Great analysis. Funny that tea-people feel they own the concept of "fight against tyranny". I will keep my rights (privacy, citizenship, jury trial) and vote with my ballot, my wallet, and my effort for candidates that support the long tradition supported by American patriots. I find those candidates, by and large, to be progressive Democrats.

At 3:23 PM, Anonymous Mr. Smug said...

Right away, Richard gets it wrong when he says that DownWithTyranny views the Democrats as the good guys. Maybe he and the rest of the Sullivan "phone bank" here should read DownWithTyranny more often. Then they might see, but only if they want to, that DownWithTyranny takes on both parties. But then, why base your life on reality? Better to shoot off your mouth before informing your mind. And, Anony, thanks for the "Pelosi-Reed (Reid by the way, not Reed)-Obama mantra. Gee, never heard it before, except on FOX every day that is! Enjoy being used!

At 5:40 PM, Anonymous District8voter said...

interesting. I have nothing good to say (or think) about Alan Grayson. Patricia Sullivan has already earned my vote - she's responsible and has a REAL plan.

At 2:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

From everything I've seen, Patricia Sullivan is the best candidate to fill the position for the 8th Congressional District.
Check her out at www.PatriciaSullivanForCongress.com
...You'll be glad you did!


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