For four out of the last seven years, the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund has been projected to have a shortfall should a major hurricane have impacted the state and cause the fund to pay out to its coverage limits. This year is no different. Currently, the Cat Fund is projected to experience a shortfall of $1.5 billion this year should a sufficiently bad hurricane strike the State of Florida.
What the hell is the “Cat Fund” and what does this mean for the average Floridian?
Some background: The Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund (AKA: “Cat Fund”) sells reinsurance to every property insurer selling coverage in the state of Florida. Reinsurance is insurance for insurance companies. Florida law requires property insurance companies to purchase a minimum amount of this coverage from the Cat Fund, and the rest they can purchase from the private reinsurance market.
The solemn American tradition of exercising the right to vote was not very solemn in Miami this weekend.
We at Reaganista.com visited one of several countywide polling locations in Southeast Florida’s Miami-Dade County on the last day of early voting. As has been widely reported by the media, the lines were several hours long–and exhausting. Several hundred stood patiently chatting with candidates and campaign volunteers, and others studied sample ballots so they would be prepared to get through the historically-long Florida ballot as quickly as possible once at the voting booth.
This was all made difficult, however, with the Obama campaign’s decision to turn the early voting location into a bizarre street carnival. A DJ was on site blaring salsa and merengue, as well as a South American folklore troupe beating drums and dancing–in the early voting parking lot’s right-of-way.
Some no doubt enjoyed the entertainment, but for many uncommitted voters interested in meeting local candidates, studying sample ballots, and learning about the various amendments and races they were about to vote on, it was an annoyance, which was very evident. The group also made it difficult for frustrated drivers to make their way through the lot to find parking spots. One elderly Cuban lady named Olga who claims she’s voted in every election since 1976 said she had never seen anything like this in all her years of voting. She called it “tremenda chusmería.”
To me it felt more like a street festival in Tegucigalpa than a voting precinct in the United States.
I don’t think the Obama campaign did itself any favors among undecided voters at this early voting location, but that’s just based on what I observed.
As I’ve written before, my hometown of Miami Lakes is a small suburban municipality in the Northwest corner of Miami-Dade County known best for its tree-lined streets, scenic lakes, parks, and overall small-town feel. It’s kind of like a peaceful, lush oasis in an otherwise hectic, overdeveloped metropolis.
Despite it’s façade, however, its politics is anything but quaint. And this year’s mayoral election is beginning to illustrate it.
The latest example comes in the form of a YouTube video uploaded by Mayoral candidate Wayne Slaton that spoofs the Late Show’s Top Ten List. In the surprisingly well-produced video, Slaton gives his “Top Ten Reasons” to elect him Mayor of Miami Lakes. In doing so, he makes tacit allegations of unethical and in some cases illegal behavior presumably by his opponent incumbent mayor Michael Pizzi, including questioning whether he burned down his own law office, uses illegal drugs, and stiffs restaurants in town without paying.
After months of fundraising, campaigning, scheming, punching, and counter-punching, candidates across Florida saw the fruits of their efforts come (and go) in the couple of hours after polls closed at 7pm yesterday.
Many outcomes were expected, some were surprising, and a few were just plain bizarre. On that note, what’s up with Central Florida? I mean, they actually elected the prosecutor who botched the Casey Anthony Trial as their new State Attorney? Seriously? Oh well. I digress.
Anyway, this is a recap of election results and how things stand in some of the races we at Reaganista.com took a position on: Continue reading →
EDITOR’S NOTE: In the next couple of weeks, we at Reaganista.com will be analyzing races across Florida and endorsing candidates whom we believe will fight to advance the cause of conservatism. Because the number of races this August and November are overwhelming, we will not be endorsing in all of them, but rather will chime-in on those that we believe a lot is at stake. These may include local, state, federal and even internal Republican Party races.
Every four years, the Republican Party of Florida elects a new governing body known as the state committee. in addition to some at-large members chosen by statewide elected officials, the Republican State Committee is comprised of three representatives from each of the state’s 67 counties: state committeeman, state committeewoman, and county party chairman.
My first two endorsements for the Republican Party of Florida State Committee are from my original home county of Miami-Dade and my current home county of León:
The race for GOP State Committeeman in León County pits incumbent Jeff Howell against longtime activist Bert Bevis. Both men are decent Republicans with the party’s best interests at heart. However, in the past four years, I have come to know current State Committeeman Jeff Howell personally as a man committed to not only growing the Republican Party, but most importantly (to me, at least) advancing the cause of conservatism from within the party itself.
My first encounter with Jeff Howell was as a visitor to the León County Republican Executive Committee in 2009 when the committee was considering a resolution that protested efforts by the state GOP to pick sides in a primary. Specifically, this was in response to Charlie Crist’s handpicked state party chairman Jim Greer’s failed attempt to waive party rules to formally endorse Crist and undermine then-underdog candidate Marco Rubio. Continue reading →