Politics

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One of the big debates taking shape this legislative session is about state involvement in economic development. The capitol’s powerbrokers are picking sides in the battle, which is threatening to derail session before it even begins.

Florida Republican lawmakers are pushing punitive immigrant and refugee legislation once again this session. Similar proposals died last year. But the 2016 campaign season may be stimulating an appetite for change.

Battle lines are being drawn in Florida over a perennially thorny issue: Guns.  State lawmakers have filed over a dozen bills seeking changes to existing gun laws. 

One bill is making waves in advance of Tuesday's opening of the legislative session Tallahassee. It would restrict the rights of cities and counties to pass laws that haven't been given the OK by the state. And it is being backed by the speaker of the Florida House.

Laws passed by local governments - such as minimum wage raises, rules to curb pollution and protection for LGBT people - would be null and void, unless they have been given specific permission from the state Legislature.

State lawmakers will consider a raft of gun bills this session primarily aimed at expanding rights.  But one representative is focused on making it easier to get firearms out of abusive households.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

With the start of Florida's Legislative session just days away, Florida House Speaker Richard Corcocan traveled to Sarasota Thursday, offering a preview to members of The Argus Foundation at the Sarasota Yacht Club.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is naming Carlos Beruff to chair Florida’s Constitutional Revision Commission.

City of Tallahassee

Just as the doors close on the presidential race, candidates are lining up to run for Florida governor in 2018.

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum is the first Democrat to announce his candidacy. There’s also been speculation that Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn has his eye on the governor’s mansion.

Updated at 10:28 a.m. ET

Donald Trump's first speech to a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night was the occasion for his most presidential performance to date, balancing a reprise of his angry campaign themes with a recitation of hopes and dreams for the nation.

It was his most successful, if not his first, effort at assuming the public persona and personal demeanor associated with his new office. He stuck to the script on his teleprompter, spoke graciously to individuals in the audience and refrained from attacks on critics, rivals or adversaries.

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum is making it official with a social media post -- he's running for governor.

The first black President of the United States is a good role model and a good father. That’s according to the head of Florida’s child welfare agency, who spoke during a recent Black History Month celebration.

Florida’s political and corporate elite are nervously anticipating Monday, when  House Speaker Richard Corcoran has promised to name his picks to the Constitution Revision Commission.

Wikipedia Commons

Loosening regulations on who can own guns - and where they can be carried - is a hot topic in the run-up to this spring's legislative session in Tallahassee. The Florida Speaker of the House claims that most mass shootings happen in places where guns aren't allowed. WUSF's Steve Newborn checks out the claim with Amy Hollyfield of PolitiFact Florida.

Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Shortly after President Donald Trump concludes his address to a joint session of Congress, former Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear will deliver the Democratic Response.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

President Donald Trump will address a joint session of Congress for the first time on Tuesday evening at the Capitol, around 9 p.m. Eastern Time. 

Republican state lawmakers want a say over local business regulations across the state. Legislation

preempting local power is moving through the legislature.

Higher workers’ compensation rates in Florida are likely here to stay, warns a key player in the Florida Senate.

Republican members of Florida’s Congressional Delegations have found themselves confronting angry constituents at recent town hall meetings. The move is part of a backlash from Democrats over the Presidential election. But how long will that anger last?

Top Issues of the 2017 Legislative Session

Feb 28, 2017

The Florida legislature will convene on Tuesday, March 7 for the start of its annual, 60-day session. The top priority is ironing out a state budget for the 2016-2017 fiscal year. But to get there, lawmakers will have to address dozens of other issues.

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