Thursday, September 30, 2010

The new Orlando Arena

I think there's definitely room for debate on the timing and expense of this construction project, but I have to admit it's a beautiful building.  I think I'm going to be stubborn and old-school and still call it the "O-Rena," just like the original building was named back in the day before the corporate sponsors.  Nothing against the people at Amway, I bet they're very nice, it's just that "Amway" doesn't make me think of basketball.

Anyway, the Magic released this time-lapse video of the construction and I thought it was pretty neat to watch.  Sort of looks like little ants are doing the work from this angle.

OK, so the Orlando Sentinel's "embed this video" button is only posting a tiny version of the video here for some reason, so here's the link where you can watch it directly on the Sentinel's website: 

Orlando Sentinel | Time lapse of Amway Center Construction

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

How the Fake Tea Party is like Justin Bieber

OK, I know that's a little bit of a wacky post title, but hang in there with me...

This morning I have another article for you from Res Publica about the Florida Tea Party Fake Tea Party, specifically Victoria Torres, who is running for a state representative district in Pinellas County, even though she lives in Orlando:

Let's think about this for a little bit.  Florida law requires a candidate for state representative to live in the district, but not until election day.  Anyone want to take any bets about whether Ms. Torres will have a moving truck in her driveway on the first Tuesday of November?   

Also, does anyone actually think that an Orlando resident can be a good representative for people in PInellas County?  Now, I live in Orlando, and I certainly don't have any problem with the St. Pete area, it's very nice and I know a lot of very charming people who live there.  But having made the drive on I-4 to the Gulf Coast several times recently, I can tell you that there is no way in H-E-double hockey sticks that I would want to make that commute on a daily, or even weekly basis.  Yeccchhhh.  I'd love to hear Ms. Torres justify her  candidacy for this seat and actually give an honest answer about how many times she's been to the district in the past year. 

Let's get real.  We all know what's going on here.  Ms. Torres is just part of a larger pattern of these Fake Tea Party candidates.  The Fake Tea Party candidates for state representative are not serious candidates, they are not going to debates, they are making no effort to actually campaign, or even meet voters at all.  

It is my firm belief that they are on the ballot for one reason, and one reason only: to split the conservative vote and help the Democrat win in close races.  Even Fred O'Neal, the Fake Tea Party chair, has made statements to the press that the party was seeking to punish Republican legislators who didn't vote the way they wanted.  

Let's consider a hypothetical legislative district that normally gets a fairly even split between Republican and Democrat votes, with the Republican usually winning 52% to 48%.  In most years, that's a comfortable enough margin, and if the Republican doesn't do anything unethical while in office and works hard on the campaign, the Republican will probably be re-elected without much stress.  But if there is a third party candidate on the ballot who appeals to conservative votes, through legitimate means or trickery, and that third party pulls 3 or 4%, now the Republican's margin of victory is wiped out, and the race could easily go to the Democrat.

I have no problem with people who legitimately and honestly want to start or join a third party.  Viva la First Amendment, y'all.  It's a free country, good for you.  However, with the Fake Tea Party, we have a party that is draping itself in the mantle and insignia of conservative politics and the tea party movement, but lacks any actual conservative heart and soul.  Remember, the party chair is a Democrat, as well as a number of the candidates, and the party's actions seem calculated to help elect more Democrats, not any conservatives.  

And again, I highlight the almost-totally-incognito-where's-Waldo-style of campaigning that most of these candidates are running - if they were truly legitimate candidates with legitimate political goals, they would show up, somewhere.  They would be trying to fundraise and doing their best to get into the public eye.  Look at the temper tantrums that Alex Snitker (Libertarian candidate for U.S. Senate) throws every time the media won't let him in the debates with Rubio, Crist, and Meek.  I don't support Snitker but I definitely respect him as a candidate who is working extremely hard, spending a lot of time meeting people, and openly discussing his ideas and priorities. 

Remember, all these Fake Tea Party candidates will show up on the ballot as "Doe, John (TEA)."  The purpose is to look like candidates supported by the popular tea party movement, even though not a single tea party movement organization in Florida supports or endorses this third party effort (in fact, many of them are currently engaged in litigation with the Florida Tea Party over the use of the name, or have received threats of litigation from the Florida Tea Party). to explain the Justin Bieber, it's not just to improve my Google page ranking, hahaha...

The Florida Tea Party's use of the tea party name is equally as dishonest as if I changed my last name to Bieber, told people Justin Bieber was my cousin, and tried to get money and favors from them.  Sure, I can legally change my name to Bieber, but I have no right to the identity and reputation of Justin Bieber.  LIkewise, the "Florida Tea Party" may argue that they have the legal right to call their party by that name, but they have no right to claim the identity and reputation of the tea party movement.  

Justin Bieber does not endorse this website...or the Florida Tea Party
The way to solve this problem is difficult and easy at the same time.  There are a lot of people to reach, a lot of people who need to be informed, but the information really is simple and easy to explain.  Tell your friends, tell your relatives, tell your neighbors and co-workers: "TEA" on the ballot does not mean "tea party movement."  "TEA" on the ballot is nothing more than a few Democrats and guys who got kicked out of the Republican Party, along with a handful of people that they hand-selected to run against Republicans.

Now you know.  And as every kid who grew up in the 1980s can tell you, knowing is half the battle!

Knowing IS Half the Battle!  GI Joe!  Yeah!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Recovery Summer?

From the NRSC...

Remember our own Republican Senate candidate, Marco Rubio. Sign up to volunteer or donate and help elect Florida's next senator!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

November is coming

Oh, this is just awesome, awesome, awesome. Watch, and then forward to your friends:

GOP: The Party for Bald Guys?

This is pretty funny:
Being serious fact-checkers, PolitiFact Florida immediately abandoned analyses about the future of Social Security, the extension of the Bush tax cuts and federal hurricane policy. The staff thought it that critical to see if Scott can make hair history.
Because hair, after all, is a nonpartisan political issue.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Facebook Censorship

I just posted this as a note on the Sunshine State Sarah Facebook page:
Hello friends,

It seems like Doug Guetzloe or one of his little minions has reported me to Facebook.  They have removed one of my notes about Guetzloe (which was just a copy of a post from my blog), saying that it violated their terms of service, prohibiting notes that are "hateful, threatening, or obscene" or notes "that attack an individual or a group."  The highlight of the email was the ominous warning that "Continued misuse of Facebook's features could result in your account being disabled." 

Who knew?  Apparently you are not allowed to write a note that says anything mean or critical about anyone else.  So that means that all the political candidates' pages need to come down right now if they are talking about why they are better than their opponents.  And that post you wrote last week complaining about the idiot who cut you off in traffic or the waiter who gave you bad service?  Not allowed.  Anyone who has written that the Democrats or Republicans are corrupt or liars?   Verboten. 

There is some seriously bizarre selective enforcement going on here. 

The note in question that FB removed did NOT say anything obscene, and made no threats, and in my opinion, was nowhere close to hateful.  I have been covering the activities of Doug Guetzloe, Fred O'Neal, Peg Dunmire, their attempts to hijack the tea party movement through their third party "Florida Tea Party," and their connections to Alan Grayson.  I provide links to local news articles and court records to back up my points.  Discussing local news and political topics should not be viewed as an "attack." 

I'm not so naive as to claim this is a First Amendment issue.  Facebook is NOT the government, it's a private company whose services I'm using voluntarily, so the state is not infringing on my right to free speech.  However, if this is truly Facebook's policy and how they are going to enforce it, then I am seriously wondering if it's possible to have any political discussions on this site at all.

I have said all along, that if I am on Doug Guetzloe's enemies list, then I am doing something right.  I find it highly ironic that the Guetzloe Goonies are reporting me to FB for telling the truth about him, at the same time as they are engaging in attempts to spread malicious lies about me.  Guetzloe himself has emailed my clients, telling them I am under ethics investigation with the Florida Bar (not true - I even called to check to see if Guetzloe had filed a complaint against me) and he has emailed political candidates I work for telling them to fire me. 

Guetzloe and his supporters have also posted libelous and false things about me on the Sentinel blogs and on his Ax the Tax message boards, and elsewhere on the internet.  There is something seriously creepy going on when an overweight middle aged guy is constantly attacking a young woman by calling her a slut.  That's the go-to insult for anyone without a real argument, isn't it?  Can't argue with me on the facts and issues, so just lie and tell people I'm sleeping around?  The reality is far less interesting...I'm a single girl with a cat [insert easy joke here].  ;)

Anyway, I have turned off the automatic posting of my blog posts to this FB page.  I will post links here to the main blog page instead, so you'll still know when something new is posted. 

Thank you all for your support.

Sarah Elizabeth Rumpf

Selected Lyrics from "I Won't Back Down" - Tom Petty

Well I won't back down, no I won't back down
You could stand me up at the gates of hell
But I won't back down

Gonna stand my ground, won't be turned around
And I'll keep this world from draggin' me down
Gonna stand my ground and I won't back down

Well I know what's right, I got just one life
In a world that keeps on pushin' me around
But I'll stand my ground and I won't back down

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Important Reading for anyone concerned about the "Florida Tea Party" third party

This is definitely one of the best summaries of the Fake Tea Party shenanigans I've seen yet...

Read the article, the whole thing.  

Seriously.  Get out of here.  Go read that article.  I know I have a pretty little website here, with the lovely palm tree background, ahhh so nice, but go away, go read that article, and then you can come back here.

Forward it to your friends and family.  Forward it to everyone you know who is a registered voter in Florida. 

Thank you.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Girl Power?

Interesting article by Dr. Susan MacManus, arguing that more female candidates run for office during times of economic recession or corruption, and a statistical study of the candidates running this year...

I'm not totally convinced that women are more likely to run for office in recessions or when the incumbents are facing scandals. Dr. MacManus argues as follows:
During economic downturns, voters search for candidates they believe will be the best at balancing budgets and managing with less. Women candidates tend to benefit from this. They are perceived as having more credibility when they promise to be more fiscally frugal because in a majority of households in America, women control the purse strings.

Women are also enticed to run for office when corruption is perceived as rampant. Voters tend to think of women candidates as having a bit more integrity and being more honest than male candidates, particularly male incumbents.
...but I don't see any citations or any research support at all for these particular statements by Dr. MacManus. Still, the statistical study of this year's candidates is interesting, and I recommend reading the article.

What do you think? Are you more likely to vote for a female candidate this year? Do you believe that a female candidate is "more credible" when she promises to be fiscally responsible or ethical?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Alan Grayson Flunks Another Truth Test

Greg Fox at WESH did the Truth Test on Alan Grayson's latest TV ad, the super-annoying-makes-you-wanna-jam-a-sharp-object-in-your-ear "Alan Grayson Saved Our Schools!"

Not surprisingly, Grayson flunked.

Never underestimate the power of a blog...

From Right Wing News...

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Video from Friday's rally with Bobby Jindal, Rick Scott, and Jennifer Carroll

For those of you who couldn't make it out to the Orlando Executive Airport on Friday, here's some video of the speeches:

YouTube | Bobby Jindal at the Rick Scott - Jennifer Carroll Rally

It was a great event, and I was so excited to get to meet Bobby Jindal.  He is very sincere in person.  Jindal got a very warm and enthusiastic reception here in Orlando, and I heard a lot of people telling him they were proud of how hard he was working for the people of Louisiana, dealing with all the challenges they've faced in the past few years, and you could see on Jindal's face that he truly appreciated the comments.

...still looking for the stupid cord for my camera to download my pictures.from the event.  Will post them when I find it!  And, good news, my new Blackberry is supposed to come in the mail next week, so I'll be able to upload pictures easier again. 

Friday, September 17, 2010

Bobby Jindal a rock star. The camera on my blackberry picked a lousy day to stop working but I have my regular camera with me and will download the pictures later. I think the video is getting put on youtube and will post that link when I get it for y'all too. 

This is a fantastic event, the crowd is really fired up and excited for Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll. 

OK Jacksonville...they're heading your way!

Reminder! Come meet Bobby Jindal, Rick Scott, and Jennifer Carroll today!

Don't forget this exciting event today...Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, and Florida candidates for Gov. and Lt. Gov., Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll. 

TODAY AT 3 PM, at the Orlando Executive Airport.  Details available here.

I'll be there...will you?

Mythbusters and Republicans

"Mythbusters" is a show on the Discovery Channel that combines science and technology with a very odd sense of humor to test popular myths and urban legends.  Personally, I really like the show, it keeps my inner nerd entertained, and I can at least make the argument that it's educational.

Anyway, the bloggers at IMAO have a similarly-odd sense of humor as the Mythbusters creators, so it makes sense that they would use the show for inspiration for one of their latest pieces:

To give you a preview, this is the photo they use to represent the Ron Paulies:

Yes, that's a tin-foil hat
...and for those of you who have not read it already, please check out IMAO's infamous essay, "Nuke the Moon."  Calm down, people, it's just a satire.  

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Come see Bobby Jindal, Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll on Friday!

Here's something cool: Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is coming to town on Friday, to help support our next Governor and Lieutenant Governor, Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll.

Here's all the details:

Friday, September 17, 2010 at 3 pm
Showalter Flying Service
Orlando Executive Airport
436 Rickenbacker Drive
Orlando, FL 32803
(Just South of intersection of Colonial & Rickenbacker)

Please RSVP to with "RSVP" in the subject line.  Also, note that there was some confusion yesterday about this event...I've confirmed directly with the campaign, it is at the Showalter Flying Service at the Executive Airport (not the Showalter Field in Winter Park)

Here's the official event flyer with all the details (click to enlarge):
Hope you can join us on Friday!

Also, I've added a new feature to Sunshine State "Events" tab at the top of the page.  I get a lot of invitations to events and can't go to everything, but maybe I can share something that you might like to attend.  If you are organizing an event for a Republican candidate or conservative group, feel free to send it to me.  I can't promise I can post everything (I'm getting an insane amount of email lately) but I will try.

Thanks, hope y'all have a great week!  And make sure to come on out on Friday!

Monday, September 13, 2010

"The Hug" ... It's Baaaaaaack!

The fine folks at Americans for Prosperity have been working hard to organize their grassroots efforts for the 2010 elections.  

Unfortunately for Charlie Crist, the same photo of our Oompa-Loompa Governor being all snuggly with Obama that helped Marco Rubio drive him out of the Republican primary is now resurfacing on AFP's latest promotional brochure, coming soon to a doorknob near you:

The entire brochure is pretty dang great:
Americans for Prosperity - Charlie Crist and Alan Grayson

Love it, love it, love it.

AFP is also organizing lots of volunteer activities that you can do to help elect responsible conservatives in November.  Check it out here: November is Coming.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

RedState interviews Daniel Webster

Here's a great interview of Dan Webster by RedState's Moe Lane:

You can read the original RedState post here.  My favorite part is Lane's comment that Webster will be "the instrument by which we propel Alan Grayson to a fun new career as a bitter MSNBC analyst."  

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A moment of silence, please

Please consider taking a moment today to say a prayer for all those who lost their lives nine years ago today, and their families and friends.

God Bless America.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

A Great American Story: Mario Rubio

Earlier this week, Marco Rubio wrote a letter about the passing of his father, Mario Rubio.  I encourage you to follow the link and read the entire letter, but what stood out for me was a section where Marco talks about the symbolism of "two tables," and his father's sacrifice for his family:
I realize everyday, and today more than ever, that every opportunity I have had is the result of the selfless decisions [my father] made, even before I was born.

We, his four children, were the purpose of his life. And our accomplishments were not just a source of natural parental pride, they were and are affirmation that he mattered. That his life had real purpose. That his sacrifices were not in vain.

My dad was proud of all of his children and grandchildren. And he would have been proud of me no matter what I chose to do. But I think what made him especially proud of the career I have chosen is because of how far it is from the one he had.

For years, my dad would work banquets at hotels. Many times, these events featured a well-known figure giving a speech. At these events, there are usually only two people standing behind a table.  The speaker who is behind a podium, and a bartender behind the bar.

My dad was the one behind the bar. But he worked all his life so that his kids could make the symbolic journey from behind the bar to behind the podium.  And in fact, I literally did.

That journey is a testament to the greatness of America. And that journey was the purpose of my father’s life.
Read the entire letter here: Marco Rubio | A Letter From Marco About the Passing of his Father

Our thoughts and prayers to the Rubio family on the passing of a great American.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Old Charlie and New Charlie

From the RPOF...another video about our Flip-Flopping Governor...

Charlie in Wonderland

Saw this on Scott Maxwell's blog yesterday...
from RightChange...a new internet ad making fun of Charlie Crist's ever-changing positions:

Charlie-Dee and Charlie-Dum!  Love it!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The First Amendment means we have a right to say when you're being an idiot

So you've probably seen the news about Terry Jones, the nutcase pastor in Gainesville who has organized a Koran-burning at his church on September 11th.  

The church is called "Dove World Outreach Center" in an apparent misunderstanding of the word "irony," because I see nothing dove-like/peaceful or resembling outreach to anyone in the activities of this church.  These are the same morons who put up signs saying "Islam is of the Devil," and an anti-gay slur during the Gainesville mayor's race last March.  

The First Amendment means that Terry Jones has every right to be as ugly and hateful as he wants to be, to say what he likes and burn a Koran if he wants to.  It also means that I can say that this so-called "pastor" is being a total jacka**.

Glenn Beck posted the following thoughts on earlier today:
I’m on vacation and trying to unplug but the news can make that hard. I just read the story about the Florida church planning to burn copies of the Koran.
What is wrong with us?  It’s just like the Ground Zero mosque plan.   Does this church have the right?  Yes.  Should they?  No.  And not because of the potential backlash or violence. Simply because it is wrong.  The more I reflect on what happened on 8/28 the more I realize the amazing power of GOOD.
We must be the better person.  We must be bigger than our problems.  Bigger than the times in which we live.  Burning the Koran is like burning the flag or the Bible.  You can do it, but whose heart will you change by doing it?   You will only harden the hearts of those who could be moved.   None of those who are thinking about killing us will be affected, but our good Muslim friends and neighbors will be saddened. It makes the battle that they face inside their own communities even harder.
Let us rise above the current levels and elevate ourselves and our country.   The only thing this act would prove is that you CAN burn a Koran.   I didn’t know America was in doubt on that fact.   Let’s prove to each other that while there are many things we can do, there are maybe many more things that we choose not to do.
Well said, Mr. Beck.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Rubio's father passes away, Meek is classy, and Crist is, well, Crist...

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Marco Rubio, whose father, Mario Rubio, died last night at the age of 83 from lung cancer and emphysema.  Marco had canceled a debate appearance with his Democratic opponent, Kendrick Meek, to be by his father's side (Charlie Crist had declined to participate), and he was also joined by his mother, brother, and two sisters and extended family.  

Rubio's campaign released this message from Marco:
My father knew hard work and struggle from very early in his life. His mother died when he was only 9 years old. The day after his mother was buried he went to work with his father and did not stop working until he was 78 years old.
He was by far the most unselfish person I have ever known, always focused on others, and never on his own well being. He was especially determined to provide his children opportunities he himself never had.
My dad worked as a street vendor, security guard, apartment building manager and crossing guard.  But for most of his life he was a bartender, and by all accounts a great one. But his greatest success came from the two most important jobs he ever had: husband and father.
He was very proud of my public service. And over the last 18 months he became an expert channel surfer, constantly searching for my next television interview.
I was blessed to be raised by a world class father. And I thank God for allowing my father to live long and healthy enough to see that the sacrifices he made for us were not in vain.
Kendrick Meek also released a statement:
Since learning of the news on Friday morning, I along with my family have kept Marco and his family in our prayers. The passing of a father occurs only once in a lifetime and ever the dutiful son, Marco was where all children would hope to be during this time of family need - at his dad's bedside surrounded by family. That Marco's father could come to this country with next to nothing, raise a loving and growing family to include a son who is a candidate for the U.S. Senate in Florida, is a testament to the strength of the Rubio character and proof positive of the greatness of this nation.

Political differences takes a back seat to the priority at hand - caring for a mother and spending time with family. Let mourning be combined with celebration for a life that is exceptionally American, a life that only a handful of people have ever lived. My wife Leslie, our children, and my mother Carrie extend our condolences to you Marco and your family.
I disagree with Meek on practically every political issue, but he has been a class act in the way he has run his Senate campaign and is showing that classiness again here.  What a warm and sincere statement of sympathy.

Contrast that with Charlie Crist, who released this statement:
Yep, that's right.  Nothing.  Charlie has not said a darn thing.  Seriously, how hard is it to get a staffer to send out a short press release saying that "Our thoughts and prayers are with the Rubio family at this difficult time."  I thought it was pretty pathetic he was blowing off the debate in the first place to go to an AFL-CIO picnic (AGAIN, who the **** are the Republicans who still answer polls saying they support this guy?!), but Charlie's silence today is deafening.  

Something funny from Australia

A little fun at the expense of Australia's Green Party, which doesn't seem that different from the American version (or, for that matter, most of our leftist environmentalist groups)

Hat tip to Moonbattery, who added this great comment:
Now if only American Democrats would come forward to explain their equally irresponsible voting habits.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Come see me speak about election law

Next Friday, the Republican National Lawyers Association is sponsoring an Election Law Seminar, and yours truly is one of the presenters.  Here are the details:

Friday, September 10th, 2010
Noon - 7:00 p.m.
Disney's Contemporary Resort
Nutcracker III Room
4600 World Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Program includes lunch.   Sign up online here.
Presenters include:

Sean Cairncross, General Counsel and Deputy Executive Director, National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC)
Ariana Fajardo, Co-Chair, Florida RNLA Chapter
Jason Gonzalez, General Counsel, Republican Party of Florida
Dan Nordby, Special Counsel, Republican Party of Florida
Paul Renner, Chair, Florida RNLA Chapter
Rocky Rodriguez, former general counsel, Governor Jeb Bush
Sarah Rumpf, Election Law Attorney and Campaign Consultant :)
Michael Sevi, Associate, DLA Piper
Thomas Spencer, Board of Governors, Republican National Lawyers Association
Daniel Woodring, Woodring Law Firm
James Woodruff, Assistant Professor of Lawyering Process, Florida Coastal School of Law

Cost: $60.00 for attorneys (includes continuing legal education credit), $20.00 for non-attorneys.  CLE credit: 5 hours of Florida CLE credit, including 1 hour ethics credit.  Even non-attorneys will benefit from this program, as it offers all the election training you will need to volunteer for a Florida campaign this fall.

Topics covered:

Introduction to Election Law
Introduction to Campaign Finance Law, including Citizens United
Military Voting Issues
Voter Registration and Early Voting
Election Day Legal Issues including, Rules for Poll Watchers, Electioneering, Election Law Crimes, Provisional Balloting, and Election Day Litigation *
Post-Election Canvassing and Recounts
Ethics in Election Law

* This is the section I am presenting with Rocky Rodriguez.  She is definitely one of  Florida's experts on this topic and you are going to enjoy hearing from her.

Please note that due to the RNLA's sponsorship of this event, that attendance is limited to Republicans.  If you are not already a member of the RNLA or are not otherwise already known by the RPOF, you will need a reference in order to attend this seminar.  If you have problems signing up, let me know.  Thanks!


Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll in Orlando yesterday

For those of you who couldn't make it yesterday, here is a video of Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll's speeches:

YouTube | Rick Scott introduces Jennifer Carroll

Just like at the Republican Unity Rally on Monday, the room was standing room only, all the local press were in attendance, and the candidates received a very warm reception.  Highlights were the discussion of Scott and Carroll's common experience in the Navy and a clever joke at Charlie Crist's expense, when Carroll joked that Scott was running for Governor for the right reasons, not just to "punch a ticket to run for a Senate office."

Local Republican elected officials and candidates on stage to show support for Rick Scott and Jennifer Carroll
Also in attendance to show their support were Congressional candidates Dan Webster, District 8, and Sandy Adams, District 24; State Senators Thad Altman and Lee Constantine, State Representatives Eric Eisnaugle, Bryan Nelson, and Scott Plakon; Greg Reynolds, State House Candidate for District 36; and Orange County Mayor Rich Crotty.  Most of these people endorsed McCollum in the primary but have now come together to support Scott.  Even Jennifer Carroll herself endorsed McCollum in the primary, but you can see that she and Scott are clearly on the same team now. In this video and others taken yesterday, you can see an easy rapport and friendly relationship between Scott and Carroll. 

I think it says something very positive about Scott that he has been able to rally all these people to his side so quickly and effectively.  I know many of our local Republican elected officials and candidates, and they are definitely independently minded, not some sheep who just blindly follow where the party tells them to go.  Especially because McCollum is from Central Florida, many of these people are personal friends of his, and were front line supporters of his candidacy.  Many of them spent little to no time with Scott before the primary; I, too, never saw him in person until after he was elected as the Republican nominee.  

Scott has won everyone over the old-fashioned way - by being humble, sincere, grateful, and focusing on solid, conservative, practical ideas around which Republicans can rally.  Our local Republican leaders are sincere in their support of Scott, and the addition of Carroll to the ticket has only increased their enthusiasm for the ticket.  

One more quick note: Ann Scott is just adorable.  After the speeches, everyone was coming up to shake her husband's hand, congratulate him on his great LG selection, and take pictures.  Mrs. Scott's deep love for her husband is obvious as she stands by his side, smiling and watching everything.  I thought it was sweet that she kept asking people, "Oh, do you want me in the picture too?"  She's clearly a very humble person, but is going to have to get used to people wanting her picture too.  If you see Ann Scott at an event, definitely go up and say hi, you'll enjoy meeting her.

Here I am with our future First Lady and Governor, Ann and Rick Scott

Thursday, September 2, 2010

And the LG pick is...

...Florida State Representative, District 13, Jennifer Carroll!

Those of you who are not from the Jacksonville area may not yet know her.  I have not yet met her myself, but I'm looking forward to seeing her at the Beardall Senior Center at 2 pm today...

Anyway, here's what you need to know about Jennifer Carroll: She is awesome. 

Seriously.  There's obviously been a lot of speculation around the state over the past few weeks about who Scott would pick, and every time I've discussed the issue with anyone and Carroll's name was mentioned, all I heard was:

"Hey, she'd be a good choice!"
"Oh! I liiiiiiike her!"  
 "She'd be a real asset to the ticket!"
"Yeah! Great idea!"

Yesterday, I spoke with one of our local state representatives about Carroll and he described her as  "one of the nicest people you'll ever meet," adding that, "she has one of the best, most genuine's been an absolute pleasure to work with her...she would be a fantastic LG."  Other people who have worked with her describe her as "smart, just so smart," "a wonderful friend," "one heck of work ethic,"  "someone who deeply cares about the people who she represents," and "a great Floridian...she has a brilliant future ahead of her."

Trust me, it is hard, if not darn near impossible, to forge a political career and not tick off a few people along the way.  The fact that I have yet to talk to anyone with anything to say about Jennifer Carroll that wasn't a glowing endorsement says a lot about what kind of person she is.  Contrast Carroll's reputation with what people say about Paula Dockery, who was rumored to be on the list at one point...there are a lot of people, especially in Central Florida, who are deliriously happy today that Dockery is not the LG pick.

Here's the basic biographical details about Jennifer Carroll:

Born in Trinidad, Carroll's life story is the kind that makes me just sniffly-mushball proud to be American.  I don't care how often I hear a story about someone who "moved here, worked hard, found success," I enjoy it every single time.

As a young woman barely 20 years old, Carroll enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1979 and served our country 20 more years, she was promoted up the ranks and earned a pile of medals and commendations.  She has lived in Florida since 1986.  She's a lifetime member of the NAACP and NRA.  (Man, I cannot wait to see the liberals tie themselves in knots trying to classify, stereotype, and denigrate her...I predict they will find it more difficult than anticipated.)

She's served in the Florida House of Representatives since winning a special election in 2003.  Her son Nolan played college football at the University of Maryland and just got drafted this year by the Miami Dolphins.  Oh, and according to her House Rep bio page, she likes making stained glass.  That's pretty neat.

Anyway, y'all come join me and meet your next Lieutenant Governor, Jennifer Carroll, today at 2 pm, Beardall Senior Center, 800 Delaney Ave.  It's a free event and everyone is invited.  Come early enough that you can make sure to find a decent parking spot. :)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Rick Scott and his LG pick in Orlando on Thursday!

I just got a call from the Rick Scott campaign...he has picked his Lieutenant Governor and they will both be in Orlando tomorrow at 2 pm at the Beardall Senior Center on Delaney, just south of downtown. I'll look up the exact address when I'm not driving (sending this blog post from a gas station). 

Come join us tomorrow afternoon!  Two o'clock!

UPDATE: The Beardall Senior Center is located at 800 Delaney Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801.  Google map directions here.

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