Florida Five: Columba Bush’s jewelry habit poses a problem for Jeb’s campaign, Dems don’t want Wasserman Schultz for Senate

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

Columba Bush
Photo credit: Fox News

Columba Bush’s spending on jewelry could be problem for Jeb Bush campaign – In 1999, Columba Bush, the wife of then-Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, was detained and fined by federal customs officials for misrepresenting the amount of clothing and jewelry she had bought while on a solo five-day shopping spree in Paris. The incident left the Florida first lady deeply mortified and her husband politically chagrined. Jeb Bush said his wife had misled customs officials because she did not want him to know that she had spent about $19,000 on the trip. Read more

Yeah, Democrats don’t want Wasserman Schultz to run for Senate either – By now, you’ve probably heard about cannabis-gate. DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz allegedly put a deal forward where she would switch positions on medicinal marijuana if a Democratic donor withdrew criticism of her for not backing a related statewide initiative last year; it was defeated by a narrow margin. John Morgan, the donor who slammed Schultz for not backing the measure, contributed heavily to the pro-medical marijuana campaign. Of course, Schultz has denied the consideration of any deal regarding this debacle. Yet, there’s more; Democrats don’t want Debbie to run either. Read more

PolitiFact Florida: Suicide statistics used in guns on campus debate – A shooting incident at Florida State University late last year has reopened a debate in the Florida Legislature about whether to allow guns on college campuses. Myron May, a former FSU student, wounded two students and a library employee before he was killed by police on Nov. 20, 2014. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Florida is one of 20 states that specifically ban firearms on campuses; seven others specifically allow them under state law. The rest leave the decision up to the university. Read more

Bill would protect ‘digital assets’ after death – Maybe you’ve written a will to make sure, among other things, a particular relative gets the antique porcelain tea set your grandmother handed down to you. But what about all the photos in your Instagram account? The 10,000 or so messages you saved in Gmail? The collection of musings you saved as “notes” in Facebook? A bill now in the Florida Legislature would ensure that such “digital assets,” including online banking and investment accounts, can be controlled by someone who will protect them after death. Read more

Florida investing $2.3 billion in I-4 project – In more than 30 years of living in central Florida, Brindley Pieters has experienced his share of struggles with Interstate 4. “I tell you, some days you don’t know what to expect,” said Pieters, a 69-year-old civil engineer. “The problem with I-4 is one day it’s not so bad, and some days it’s horrendous.” State transportation officials are embarking this month on a six-year, $2.3 billion makeover to a vital, 21-mile stretch that produces congestion so thick that frustrated commuters often call it the “I-4 parking lot.” Read more 

BONUS: Florida opening betting on shark races

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Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek has been a political consultant handling public affairs, political campaigns and PAC management for nearly 20 years.
Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

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