Florida Five: Ad links Crist strip club cash to sex trafficking, Amendment 2 up in smoke

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

smoking-marijuanaNew poll confirms the worst for medical marijuana Amendment 2 – A new poll of likely voters confirms proponents’ fears that Amendment 2, a proposal to expand medical marijuana use in the Sunshine State, is in deep trouble at just the wrong time. Gravis Marketing released a poll Monday showing only 50 percent of likely voters plan to support Amendment 2, while 42 percent say they oppose it. The remaining 8 percent of voters remain undecided. For Amendment 2 to be added to the Florida Constitution, 60 percent of voters have to support it on the November ballot — meaning if 42 percent oppose it, as the poll shows, it will be defeated. Read more

Provocative RPOF ad links Crist’s strip club contributions to sex trafficking – A scathing new ad released Monday by the Republican Party of Florida suggests a link between sex trafficking and strip clubs that gave gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist $90,000 in contributions. In “Charlie’s War On Women,” Crist is seen saying in an interview that he will not return the money because it was contributed from “a management company.” Watch here

Miami superstar singer ‘Pitbull’ gives big shoutout to one candidate in hot Fla. governor’s race – It may come as a surprise to some that the most popular person at a Republican fundraiser in Coral Gables Friday was not the gubernatorial candidate who was the guest of honor. Read more

Rick Scott ahead, but Charlie Crist gaining, in FL’s early vote war – The race for Florida governor is tied in the polls, but the past week has brought more good numbers for Democrat Charlie Crist than Gov. Rick Scott. After the first full week of in-person early voting, Democrats have started to eat into Republicans’ lead in casting pre-Election Day ballots — a margin in the GOP’s favor of 138,000 of more than 1.8 million cast statewide. In 2010, Republicans led Democrats by 12 percentage points in ballots cast before Election Day, when Scott went on to beat Democrat Alex Sink by just over 1 percent of the vote. As of Monday, the Republican lead for this election was about 7.6 percentage points. Read more

Charlie Crist stood in the way of Everglades restoration – When I entered office in 1999, the greatest environmental challenge facing Florida was the rapidly deteriorating state of America’s Everglades. For years, the sensitive subtropical ecological system had suffered the side effects of a massive manmade drainage system and rapid regional development that harmed the water supply, diverted water from the natural habitat and threatened the many species that call these unique wetlands home. During the next eight years, we would make the restoration of America’s Everglades one of the state’s top priorities. Read more

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