Florida Five: Barack Obama upside down in Florida, Scott wades into VA hospital storm

Five of today’s top Florida political stories at your fingertips:

Barack Obama upside down in Florida; Obamacare remains unpopular: Despite carrying Florida in the last two presidential elections, a new poll from a conservative group shows President Barack Obama is under water in the Sunshine State — and there could be consequences in the gubernatorial race, expected to be one of the nation’s political main events come November. The poll from McLaughlin and Associates, taken for the American Future Fund, finds a majority of likely voters — 53 percent — disapprove of Obama, while 43 percent approve of him. Read more.

Speed Limit
Photo Source Jacksonville.com

Higher speed limit may be Scott’s first veto target: Gov. Rick Scott says he has not decided whether to sign or veto the bill that increases the speed limit on Florida interstates to 75 miles per hour. But signs are growing that Scott could make the bill (SB 392) a target of his veto pen. Scott attended a funeral service last week for Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Chelsea Renee Richard, who was struck and killed on I-75 in Ocala on May 3 while she investigated a traffic accident. Read more.

Rick Scott wades into VA hospital storm:With the federal Veterans Affairs department under fire for problems with hospital management across the nation, including a well-publicized case in Phoenix where 40 veterans died waiting for care while the VA hospital altered lists to hide the long waiting time, Florida politicians are weighing in as VA Secretary Eric Shinseki is planning audits at all VA facilities. Read more.

Governor signs bill allowing ‘Dreamer’ to get law license: Gov. Rick Scott signed 58 bills into law Monday, including one that will allow a Pinellas County law school graduate to qualify for a Bar license even though he’s not a citizen.”I feel ecstatic. I can’t believe it,” said Jose Godinez-Samperio, 27, of Largo. “We’ve had to jump through so many hoops, I can’t believe it’s here.”Legislators in both parties championed his cause after the Florida Supreme Court ruled unanimously in March that a federal law bars Godinez-Samperio from practicing law in Florida unless the Legislature exempts the state from that law. Read more.

Rick Scott leading Charlie Crist in new poll: Conservative group American Future Fund released a poll from McLaughlin and Associates on Monday showing Gov. Rick Scott leading former Gov. Charlie Crist in Florida’s gubernatorial race. Scott takes 42 percent while Crist wins 38 percent. Several polls have shown Crist with a lead, but Scott has been making progress in recent months. In April, a poll commissioned by Sunshine State News showed Scott with a slight lead over the former governor. The new poll finds a majority — 53 percent — approve of Scott’s job performance. While 36 percent of those surveyed view Scott in an unfavorable light, 44 percent see him favorably. Read more.

BONUS: As Jeb Bush eyes 2016, key question is how a presidential campaign would affect his family

For more Florida political news, visit BPR’s FLORIDA NEWS page

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