Florida Five: Thrasher steps down from Scott campaign, Florida an independent nation?

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

John Thrasher steps down from Rick Scott campaign: In his first official action since being named Florida State University’s next president, state Sen. John Thrasher fulfilled a promise and stepped down as chairman of Gov. Rick Scott’s re-election campaign. Thrasher said he told Scott about his decision in person Tuesday night just hours after the FSU Board of Trustees voted to make him president. “I talked to the governor last night and verbally submitted my resignation and told him it would be announced today,” Thrasher told us today. Read more

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Florida an independent nation? No way, people say: After Florida Today newspaper opinion writer Matt Reed playfully posited the possibility that Florida should be an independent nation, we took to the streets to ask Floridians what they thought of the idea. “No way, good Lord!” said Silvia Núñez, a Cuban immigrant who has lived in the United States for more than 50 years. “You’ve got to be joking.” That pretty much sums up the opinion of several people we approached, though Gabriel Prado did admit Florida has its own brand of weirdness. Read more

Judge: Lee County teacher can’t bring school voucher lawsuit: A judge on Wednesday dismissed one of two legal challenges to the state school voucher program. The lawsuit, filed by the statewide teachers union, targeted a controversial law that both expanded the voucher program and created new scholarships for children with disabilities. The union said the Florida Legislature had violated the state Constitution by rolling multiple policies into one law. Leon County Circuit Court Judge Charles Francis dismissed the case on a technicality. Read more

Citizens removes emergency insurance assessment a year early: Florida property owners will stop paying a 1 percent emergency assessment on their insurance bills two years earlier than planned under a recommendation approved Wednesday by the board of Citizens Property Insurance. For the average homeowner, that translates into a total savings of about $40 over two years. Citizens was allowed to tack the assessment on to Florida property policies after eight storms during the 2004-05 hurricane seasons left the state-run insurer with a deficit of more than $1.7 billion. Read more

Mike Huckabee, Family Research Council mobilizing conservatives in Florida: Social and religious conservatives are getting mobilized across Florida with less than six weeks to go until the general election. Vision America Action and Watchmen on the Wall, which is affiliated with the Family Research Council (FRC), will be holding events for pastors in Melbourne on Wednesday, and Tallahassee and Panama City on Thursday. Former Gov. Mike Huckabee, R-Ark., who moved to the Panhandle after his presidential bid in 2008, will speak at the Panama City event… Read more

Bonus: Ann Romney calls out Debbie Wasserman Schultz

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

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Tom Tillison

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