Greener BeeGreen HolidaysHolidays are over, let’s campaign – Trump gives a promotion – Treasure Coast’s algae woes continue – establishment …

07/05/16 07:13 AM EDT

By Matt Dixon (; @MDixon55) and the staff of POLITICO Florida

Good Tuesday morning. Remember us? Playbook is back. America’s birthday was a blast. We had boats, barbeque, soda pops*, and fireworks, but it’s time to get back to work. This week your early morning slice of Florida politics is coming from Florida bureau chief Matt Dixon. I’m in St. Petersburg for July 4th and stealing wi-fi from the competition (his name rhymes with Heater Borsch). So, here goes nothing. Marc is STILL on vacation. If you’re looking for him this week, you’ll likely need a boat or a bottle of Rum (he knows how to vacation).

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While the mid-summer months often represent a political downtime, it’s 2016, so no one can – or will – miss an opportunity. So, with George Washington in mind – let’s Playbook.

The top-line news headed into the holiday was Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump (I no longer use ‘presumptive’ and either should you) elevating one of his top Florida staffers. So I’ll begin my substitute teacher duty by taking a dive into Trump World. It’ll be great, I can tell you that.

(*Not actually soda)

CLIMBING THE LADDER –Trump promotes Giorno to ‘Florida chief strategist,’” by POLITICO Florida’s Daniel Ducassi: The Trump campaign announced on Friday that it has promoted Karen Giorno to become a senior adviser and chief strategist to win Florida’s 29 electoral votes. The campaign hired Giorno in October as the state director for Florida, and after a big Florida primary win that knocked Marco Rubio out of the race, she was promoted to Southeast regional political director.

We’ve all heard the Trump staffer stuff. If you were to ask the Florida Democratic Party, they will tell you they are hiring more field staff/volunteers each month (50-ish) than the Trump campaign has staff across the country. FDP might be wrong, but the fact we can sort of believe it speaks for itself.

Another Trump ‘business acumen’ story – “Donald Trump went to Florida and got in a big mess,” by Tampa Bay Times’ Alex Leary: In a way, the whole mess began in Florida. Donald Trump in 2005 had just launched his real estate “university,” online classes promising people the keys to his gold-plated lifestyle. But the New Yorker and his partners wanted to expand into live seminars. Lacking experience, they scouted three companies.

Dynatech in Orlando got passed over because it already managed several brands. Whitney Education Group in Cape Coral gave off a bad vibe. “It didn’t take too much due diligence to look online and see the line of complaints about their business practices for us to feel uncomfortable,” a partner later explained.

Karen still wins

But, I mean, numbers are numbers – Trump’s chances of winning Florida appear slim,” by the Tallahassee Democrat: Florida was supposed to be favorable for Donald Trump. Gov. Rick Scott is a political ally. His business ventures and real estate development give him a foothold in the state. His staunch support of Social Security plays well to the state’s senior-heavy electorate. It’s been called his second home because he owns Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach.

Set the narrative. Set, set the narrative – “Poe opponents question his Grayson fund investment,” by Orlando Sentinel’s Jeff Weiner: Poe, a candidate for Florida’s 10th congressional district in Orlando, was an investor in U.S. Rep. Alan Grayson‘s controversial hedge fund, which opponents say contradicts his pitch that he is a progressive political outsider. Poe said he invested $100,000 in the Grayson Fund in late 2012, before pulling his money out in early 2015, after the fund under-performed his expectations.

Who wants to cuddle? – “Beruff looks to make ‘the Hug’ hurt Rubio the way ‘The Hug’ hurt Crist,” by Palm Beach Post’s John Kennedy:

More positive national press – “How toxic green slime caused a state of emergency in Florida,” by USA Today: Florida Gov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency in counties on the state’s Atlantic coast last week over expansive algae blooms in the St. Lucie River.

Scott’s executive order in Martin and St. Lucie counties called on state agencies to take actions to address the thick toxic blooms that are ruining the river’s ecology, devastating water-related businesses and that could potentially cause health problems for those in contact with the water.

YOU KNOW WHAT FISH DO IN THAT? – “Water debate running through primary,” by Fort Myers News Press’ Betty Parker: Every local election seems to develop one or two key themes, but rarely does a single issue take on the kind of visceral role that water — specifically water from Lake Okeechobee released down the Caloosahatchee — plays this year.

Almost every challenger in the Aug. 30 primary cites water as the major, if not only, issue. Incumbents are on the defense, recounting their responses to the situation after historic weather events and the ugly effects of lake water pouring down the river to the bays, beaches and Gulf.

** A Message from Progress Florida Education Institute: Anti-abortion politicians are turning lies into laws to shame, pressure, and punish women. Their rights are being trampled in the process. Enough is enough. It’s time to support women’s health, rights, and dignity. Silence is not support. Get the facts. **

TOP-ED – “A soldier’s pride: Orlando, my hometown, worth defending,” by Chuck Nadd, a U.S. Army captain currently stationed in Texas and founder of the nonprofit Operation American Dream, in the Orlando Sentinel: “Perhaps we are reminded by the grand tales woven through our theme parks that the good guys, so long as they always stand up against evil, will win. Perhaps we are inspired by the feats of engineering on the Space Coast that show us that here nothing is impossible. Or perhaps we understand from our neighbors of every race, creed, ethnicity, national origin, and sexual orientation that out of many, we are one. … If the narrative of American exceptionalism has been in doubt in recent years, Orlando’s resiliency, unity and indomitable spirit have reminded us all of what makes our Republic so great.”, a birthday boy Saturday, was the soldier in the 2014 Budweiser Super Bowl “Hero’s Welcome” ad

Déjà vu — “Can Beurff beat Rubio,” by Sarasota Herald-Tribune’s Zac Anderson: The loudest applause came from an unlikely source last week as U.S. Senate candidate Carlos Beruff tried to rally support for his underdog campaign among a small group of Republicans in Charlotte County.

Linda McGreevy was a tireless advocate for Marco Rubio during the Republican presidential primary, co-chairing his campaign in Charlotte County. But she grew disenchanted with Rubio during the race and was not pleased to see him break his pledge to run for re-election in the Senate.

The map is changing – “Hispanic population continues to change in Florida,” by Miami Herald’s Mary Ellen Klas: What difference does four years make? For Florida, in a presidential election year, the difference means surging population growth that could influence the outcome of the national contest. The state remains a crucial swing state in the presidential sweepstakes but, since 2012, Florida’s electorate has changed in important ways — exacerbating the role of its growing Hispanic and elderly populations and potentially sowing seeds of a more disruptive revolution to come.

Rubio says – “‘All sorts of red flags’ raised by Bill Clinton-Loretta Lynch meeting, Rubio says,” by Miami Herald’s Alex Leary: Sen. Marco Rubio said Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s meeting with Bill Clinton “raises all sorts of red flags,” joining criticism by Donald Trump and others.

“The notion that the prosecutor, the person who runs the Justice Department, would spend 30 minutes in a private conversation with the spouse of someone her Department is investigating raises all sorts of red flags and even Democrats have admitted it,” Rubio said in a radio interview. “Obviously, they’re not going to say terrible things about her, but even they’ve admitted that it looks bad.

NOT CHEAP — “Medicaid lawsuit could talk taxpayers millions,” by Sarasota Herald-Tribune’s Maggie Clark: As both sides of a decade-long lawsuit over Florida’s Medicaid program heralded the case’s official close last week, state taxpayers also had something to celebrate: the end of a 10-year stream of legal bills they will cover.

In a federal court in Miami, U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Adalberto Jordan certified a settlement in the case, which requires the state of Florida to pay $12 million in legal fees to attorneys defending parents and pediatric providers. The state must also work with both groups to correct the problems identified in the lawsuit — namely that the more than 2 million poor children enrolled in Medicaid must have access to health care and administrative hurdles to care need to be addressed.

Lessons learned? – “California holds lessons learned,” by Sarasota Hearld-Tribune’s Lloyd Dunkelberger With Florida Senate leaders holding recent fund-raisers in California, they may draw a few policy lessons from the nation’s largest state in addition to the financial contributions that they received. Senate Majority Leader Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, hosted a three-day event this week in the Napa Valley to raise money for his Innovate Florida political fund. Sen. Joe Negron, R-Stuart, held a prior fund-raiser at the Pebble Beach golf resort.

Ohhhh that smell – “GOP smells blood in critical Florida Senate seat,” by POLITICO’s Burgess Everett and Kevin Robillard: Republicans are trying to end the Florida Senate race before it even begins. In one dramatic day this month, the entire race — one of roughly a half-dozen on which control of the Senate rests — was turned on its head. First, GOP Sen. Marco Rubio dropped his retirement plans and announced plans to run for reelection. Within hours, the CBS affiliate in Miami aired a bombshell investigative story accusing the Democratic establishment’s chosen candidate, 33-year-old Rep. Patrick Murphy, of rampant résumé inflation.

“CDC grants state $1.3 million to fight Zika,” by Miami Herald’s Kathleen McGrory: Federal health officials are giving Florida more than $1.3 million to help prevent the spread of Zika, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Friday. All told, the CDC is distributing $25 million to 53 state, city, and territorial health department in areas at risk for outbreaks of the mosquito-borne Zika.

OUT OF STEUBE’S POCKET: “Slosberg writes campaign $120 K.,” by POLITICO Florida’s Matt Dixon: Democratic state Rep. Irv Slosberg of Boca Raton wrote his campaign a $120,000 personal check in June as he kicked off a state Senate bid. Slosberg announced last month that he would be running for Senate District 31, which is currently represented by Democratic Sen. Jeff Clemens of Lake Worth.

Hey, everyone, get in line! — “Top Rubio, Bush backers holding Trump fundraiser,” by Bloomberg’s Kevin Cirilli and Jennifer Jacobs: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is looking to project party unity in the Hamptons next week, when he’ll huddle with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus at a fundraiser featuring top donors to some of his former rivals.

Pepe Fanjul, a Florida sugar baron and longtime patron of Senator Marco Rubio, is part of a host committee for the Trump and RNC fundraiser at billionaire investor Wilbur Ross’ home in Southampton on July 9, according to a copy of the invitation obtained by Bloomberg Politics.

‘Merica — And, without further ado, here is our July 4 montage of Florida Man shenanigans (George Washington would be proud):

–“Florida man wins Key Lime pie eating contest,” by AP’s Sergio Bustos: Florida man visiting Key West on his honeymoon is this year’s winner of a Key lime pie-eating contest in Key West. Elliot Zeller, 37, of Sunrise, Fla., won The Mile High Key Lime Pie Eatin’ Contest on Monday afternoon after gobbling down a 9-inch pie in 1 minute and two seconds. Last year’s winner took 1 minute and 18 seconds to devour the pie. Contestants could not use their hands.

–“Video: Florida man chased by shark while spear fishing,” by Palm Beach Post’s Kimberly Miller: A Florida man spearfishing off Pompano Beach was chased by a shark Friday that wanted to make a snack out of the man’s catch. Sean O’Connor said he had just caught a hogfish and was putting it on his stringer when a friend mentioned a nearby nurse shark and asked if he would have any problems with the shark.

–“Florida man charged with stealing turtle eggs,” by NBC Miami: An investigation by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation led to the arrest of a South Florida man and the recovery of over 100 sea turtle eggs. 49 year old Glen Shaw of Tequesta was arrested Friday and charged with taking possession of loggerhead sea turtle eggs. He was jailed on a $3,000 bond.

** A Message from Progress Florida Education Institute: The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in favor of women’s health rights and dignity, but anti-abortion opponents aren’t listening. Politicians are turning lies into laws to shame, pressure, and punish women. What happens when anti-abortion politicians in Florida turn lies into laws? Women’s health care gets pushed out of reach. Politicians tell doctors how to practice medicine. Women are blocked from making their own decisions and their rights are being trampled in the process. Abortion is safe and legal. It’s time for politicians to stop meddling in women’s personal decisions. Enough is enough. It’s time to support women’s health, rights, and dignity. Get the facts. **

FOR MORE political and policy news, check out Politico Florida’s home page: And please follow our staff @mdixon55, @christinesexton, @dducassi, @jessicabakeman and @bruceritchie on Twitter.

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