In Orlando this weekend, Gov. Jeb Bush told the Florida Republican Party that he will use the just-begun legislative session to answer his critics, who contend that his policies are to blame to for the state's revenue crisis. (One note of poesy: the party conference was held at Disney's Coronado Resort … Disney is the linchpin of Florida's tourism industry … and Florida's tourism industry is one of the reasons why Florida doesn't have an income tax … which is the main reason why Florida is so sensitive to economic downturns.) ( http://www.tallahassee.com/mld/democrat/news/local/2555925.htm )
For those of you nostalgic for that political-media touchstone of yesteryear (reporter spends time with Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., reporter given incredible access, reporter sees McCain do impersonations, reporter decides McCain will be or should be president — or both), grab yourself this week's New Yorker in which Nick Lemman hints at another McCain run for president in 2004 as an independent. It'll fill that aching hole. Just let us know if you see anything in the piece that's at all new from what we've heard out of McCain or his aides and advisers before.
Iowa's David Yepsen, in a column Al Gore would love, urges Iowans to think about building better roads — telecommunication roads. ( http://desmoinesregister.com/news/stories/c5917686/17118726.html )
North Carolina Democratic Senate candidate Erskine Bowles took in $160,000 at a Raleigh fund-raiser late last week. ( http://www.newsobserver.com/monday/front/News/Story/906667p-905006c.html )
With all the focus on campaigns and finances and reform, a significant win in Massachusetts for those who support the right of candidates to limit their own fund-raising and get state money in return. The Supreme Judicial Court has ruled that the state's clean election law, referendumed by voters in 1999, must be funded by the legislature. (House Speaker Tom Finneran had essentially refused to fund the provision). It's now in effect, and will affect this year's numerous statewide races. ( http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A40441-2002Jan25.html )
Roll Call looks at the red-carpet treatment House Majority Leader Dick Armey's son Scott, who is running to replace his dad, received from Washington GOP political, PAC and lobbying circles. ( http://www.rollcall.com/pages/politics/00/2002/01/pol0128a.html )
A name you've probably never heard of but should keep in the back of your mind: Georgette Sosa Douglass — she works on behalf of Republican and Hispanic causes in South Florida and, according to a Miami Herald profile, she has so few aspirations herself that she doesn't carry a cell phone. ( http://www.miami.com/herald/content/news/local/broward/digdocs/049116.htm )
Utah and 2002 Winter Olympics Republican Gov. Mike Leavitt delivers his State of the State address today.
Bush Administration Strategy/Personality