Florida Five: Alarm bells for Crist after poll, Pam Bondi champions traditional marriage only

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

Florida Gov. Rick Scott signs budget, vetoes $69 million in spending: Gov. Rick Scott signed a $77 billion state budget Monday, the largest in Florida history, packed with hundreds of millions of dollars in popular election-year projects championed by his fellow Republicans in the Legislature.Scott’s use of the line-item veto was his most surgical yet. He trimmed only $69 million in spending as he approved money for parks, museums, festivals, elderly meals programs, water and sewer projects, and a gun range for police officers. Read more.

Pam Bondi draws fire and applause for defending state’s traditional marriage law: After Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi looked to defend the state constitutional amendment which ensures the recognition of only traditional marriage in the Sunshine State, activists from both sides looked to rally supporters on Monday. Bondi filed a brief last week, defending the state’s marriage amendment which 62 percent of voters approved back in 2008. In the brief, Bondi maintained same-sex marriage “imposes significant public harm.” Bondi also made the case for keeping only traditional marriage recognized in the public arena. Read more.

Charlie CristThat Survey USA poll should be setting off alarm bells in Charlie Crist’s campaign: Last week, I wrote about an under-reported reason why Governor Rick Scott may have closed the gap with/overtaken Charlie Crist in recent polls. Based on what I was reading from a poll commissioned by a statewide business group, Scott’s rise in the polls has taken place at the same time an increasing number of Floridians believe the state is heading in the right direction. Read more.

EPA: Florida must cut carbon emissions 38 percent: The federal government is proposing that Florida cut its carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 38 percent by the year 2030. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced specific targets for all states Monday as part of the Obama administration’s effort to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants nationwide by nearly a third over the next 15 years. Read more.

Rick Scott and Charlie Crist fight over education and budget: Gov. Rick Scott and former Gov. Charlie Crist, his leading Democratic challenger, clashed on Monday over education and the budget.
The Florida Democratic Party went on the attack against Scott on Monday, launching a new video hitting him on education spending. But Allison Tant, the chairwoman of the Florida Democrats, tried to ignore Crist’s record on the matter. Tant noted that per-pupil spending is below 2007 levels, the first year of  Crist’s term as governor. Read more.

BONUS: Marco Rubio’s Iowa Bet Could Pay Off in 2016

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