INSIDER Column: Mick's Picks

MICK’S PICKS- THE GENERAL ELECTION 2018: How I am voting (or would) 

US SENATOR

Rick Scott- If the Kavanaugh hearings were not enough to show you what maintaining Republican leadership in the Senate means, then there is no convincing you.  Bill Nelson has been a go to vote for the Democratic establishment for far too long.  It’s time Florida has a unified presence in the US Senate. 

GOVERNOR (R)

Ron DeSantis- DeSantis and Andrew Gillum could not be more philosophically different.  Gillum’s stated positions of raising taxes, socializing more medical coverage in the state and going after lawfully owned and used firearms would be a disaster for the state.  While DeSantis’ campaign has not been the best ever seen, the differences in he and Gillum alone are enough to justify the DeSantis vote. 

 

UNITED STATES REPRESENTATIVE D8

Bill Posey- Bill has served the Space Coast and Florida well in congress and there is no reason to stop the quality representation he is providing.  Bill has enough seniority in the House at this point for his voice to be heard and as long as the House remains in Republican control it is his voice that will be most effective.  Should the house fall to the Democrats, Bill’s inexperienced opponent would be a Pelosi acolyte and an automatic vote for the radical Democratic agenda we saw in the Obama years.

 

STATE SENATE D14

Tom Wright- While the Democrat in this race is Mel Martin, a likeable woman who has family in WV that is nearly family to me, her positions are not such that I could support her election to this seat.  With the governor’s race so close it is imperative to keep the legislature in Republican control.  With no counter balance from the legislative branch Andrew Gillum would ruin the state with his heavy taxing hand, desire to further limit Second Amendment rights and expansive entitlement program ideas.  The Republican party from the state to the Volusia and Brevard county levels dropped the ball here by taking far too much time to select the late Senator Hukill’s replacement, putting Wright even further behind the 8 ball and only 3 weeks to mount a campaign.  Remember it’s Dorothy Hukill’s name that will appear on the ballot.  A vote for Hukill is actually for Tom Wright. 

 

STATE REPRESENTATIVE

D50

Rene Plasencia- The incumbent did not appear with us in either the Primary or General Election season.  I do not care for his stance on school safety and believe his education background prevents him from voting intelligently on this issue.  In other ways he is the conservative choice in this race.  For the reasons stated in the Senate race above, Plasencia is the right choice for me here.  The Democratic opponent here is all in for Andrew Gillum and his potentially devastating ideas for Florida.  Nice lady, not the right choice for me.

D51 

Tyler Sirois- has had experience as a legislative aide in the House and as an administrator in two county government offices, The Supervisor of Elections and State Attorney. His knowledge of the issues and the process are exemplary.  He is statesmanlike and a needed voice for Brevard in Tallahassee and locally. While I like and respect what I know of his Democratic opponent, this is not the time for a legislative party makeover.

D52 

Thad Altman- As a long time Representative and Senator for Brevard, Thad has the knowledge of how Tallahassee works and has the connections to make a difference for Brevard.  His opponent has tried different campaigns without success since the early 2000’s.  I have not seen substance from her in any of those races and see nothing to change my mind here. 

D53

No Vote in This Race- While interviews with these candidates were informative and among the best of this election season, neither candidate earned my vote.

 

COUNTY COMMISSION

D2

Bryan Lober- This is the comeback pick of this election season for me.  Lober was not polished or grounded in his first interview on BML.  His second, however, showed me a candidate who has matured and grounded himself in the issues.  He is articulate and understanding of the complexities of the issues facing Brevard and will be the most conservative representation we have seen in this seat in my twenty years watching Brevard politics. 

Lober’s opponent is a personable and capable woman with experience working inside county government.  Both candidates share goals of adequately compensating county employees and that is admirable.  It is my opinion Lober is more ready for this and the other tasks facing the commission in coming years and would do so with a more conservative outlook.

D4 

Curt Smith- In 4 years this incumbent has accomplished more than many would have thought possible.  Reduction in CRA’s, adding miles of paved roads and paving the way for more constructive cooperation with Brevard’s city governments are only part of the story.  Curt has refused to check his judgment for that of officials elected to the Florida House exhibiting a better understanding of the functions of governments at all levels than they have.

School Board

D1

 Misty Belford- Misty has served one term and is seeking the second. She has earned it. This has not been an easy term on the board with school safety taking priority over the last year. The financing is complicated and the issues complex.  Misty has a handle on these and other issues and while we don’t always agree, she is serving honorably and deserves to keep this job.  Misty’s opponent is a nice gal, but she has an uphill climb as a write-in candidate and she isn’t ready to take on this job just yet.

D2

Charles Parker- Parker is clearly prepared well for this job. His interviews were confident and reasonable. He is right on school safety issues and has a clear understanding of the issues facing our schools. His opponent is far off the mark here and has lots of wishes, but few actual plans for accomplishing them.  Parker has good ideas and the ability to articulate them and win support.

D5

Katye Campbell- Katye has demonstrated knowledge and experiences other candidates in this and previous races for this seat have been unable to show. She is right on protecting our kids and has a solid foundation for her decisions. While her opponent was a good interview, the information solicited indicates she is not right on school safety and the emphasis on expenditures without real answers on paying for them can’t earn her this vote.

We’ll tackle the Florida constitutional amendments in next week’s INSIDER column. 

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