Florida Democrats just can’t capitalize

I donít know which major political party in Florida is more incompetent: the one with its leaders being investigated and scandalized, or the one that canít make hay out of its opponentsí investigations and scandals. Three senior-level Republicans, all disgraced. And yet the Florida Democratic Party canít beat these guys? Beginning with former U.S. Rep. Mark Foley, through former House Speaker Ray Sansom and former state Sen. Jim Norman, and even recently with former U.S. Rep. David Rivera, the Florida Republican Party has had more egg on its face than a short-order cook. Only one of those four politicians under investigation was removed from office after defeat at the ballot box. The others were either hounded out of office (Foley), arrested before charges were dropped (Sansom) or did not run again after being investigated by the feds (Norman). And these are just four examples that came to mind. From Okaloosa to Palm Beach, at least a dozen Republican officials are or have recently been under investigation. Yet the Washington Generals, err, Florida Democrats, have been unable to make the case that the Republican Party is synonymous with scandal.
If I were in charge of the Florida Democratic Party, I would have a team of operatives and social media mavens doing nothing but making an argument greater than the sum of its parts Ė that these scandals are not isolated, but endemic of the entire political system. Think about it: Has much been heard from Florida Democrats after Carrroll resigned? Or after Greer was sentenced? A Republican state legislator is being investigated by two media outlets for misappropriating a $2.4 million grant and there hasnít been one press release from the state Democratic Party. Are the lights even on at Florida Democratic Party headquarters? Or have they been permanently knocked out by the Republicans?

Peter Schorsch, a political consultant based in St. Petersburg, publishes and edits the Florida political blog SaintPetersBlog.com.

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