Now you can listen to the stories behind Florida politics. Start the coffee and listen to the stories that will be driving the day. This is SUNRISE, a new daily podcast on the people and policies behind The Process — and beyond. With guests from all stops on the political spectrum in the Sunshine St…
President Joe Biden and Gov. Ron DeSantis have ordered flags at half-staff in honor of former Secretary of State Colin Powell, as he's remembered by friends and family. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Survivors of the Dozier School for Boys (now senior citizens) recall the horrors of their abuse. — Lawmakers are bracing for a knockdown, drag-out Session on issues like redistricting and abortion rights. — Ousted Miami Police Chief Art Acevedo speaks out. — Today's Sunrise Interview is with Florida Politics health care reporter Christine Sexton who gives the scoop on all things health care. Seriously, she will share one of the best resources for health news and information.
Democratic Sen. Annette Taddeo wants to be Florida's next Governor. Also on today's Sunrise: — Taddeo is up against two Democratic front-runners, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and her former gubernatorial running mate, Congressman Charlie Crist. — Soon after Crist made his pledge to legalize cannabis, Fried made it clear she's not new to the call. — And Gov. Ron DeSantis shares concerns over dubious claims about the federal government's attempt to track bank transactions and driver data. — Today's Sunrise Interview is with Taddeo, who confirms she is officially jumping into the race for Governor.
Congressman Charlie Crist makes big promises for a second shot at the Governor's mansion. Also on today's Sunrise: — Some Supervisors of Elections across the state say Florida's new election law, which they were not consulted on, is costing them a lot of money to stay in compliance. — And Gov. Ron DeSantis declares retribution on Florida business for defying his orders against vaccine mandates. — Today's Sunrise Interview explores how Florida's new election law adds new financial costs for some of Florida's 67 counties. We're joined by reporter Natalia Galicza, with Fresh Take Florida, about her in-depth coverage looking at the impact of Senate Bill 90.
Gov. Ron DeSantis and his elections chief reject calls to do a forensic audit of the 2020 elections. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Looking ahead to the Governor's reelection campaign, observers note DeSantis is playing copycat with his frenemy, Sen. Rick Scott. — Attorney General Ashley Moody is out with a warning about counterfeit pills hitting the black market. — The Sunrise Interview is with Noah Pransky, political editor with LX.com, who points out that just like Scott before him, DeSantis would rather focus on fighting with President Joe Biden than with the Democratic challengers gunning for his job.
Gov. Ron DeSantis opens up publicly for the first time, about his wife's breast cancer diagnosis. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Meanwhile, the Governor is following through on his promise to fine local governments for mandating vaccines as a condition of employment. Leon County alone was slapped with over a $3.5 million fine. — And there is a big shake-up in the city of Miami, as its Police Chief is expected to be forced out today, just after six months on the job. — On the Sunrise Interview, Danny Rivero is a reporter and producer for WLRN Public Radio. Rivero will break down the big shake-up in Miami's police department, also, he talks about why he had to block the Governor's press secretary on Twitter. — Democratic Rep. Allison Tant, part of the Leon County legislative delegation, speaks out against DeSantis for imposing the multimillion-dollar fine against the county for its COVID-19 vaccine requirement.
The head of VISIT FLORIDA gives lawmakers the naked truth about the Sunshine State's clothing-optional beaches. Also, on today's Sunrise: — In his last cycle as a legislator, Democratic Rep Joseph Geller calls for reforms to Florida's hate crime law. — And some lawmakers express concerns with transparency throughout Florida's redistricting process. — On the Sunrise interview is Geller, joined by the Florida Hate Crimes Coalition this morning for a news conference to discuss expanding protections under the state's hate-crime law.
Activist Desmond Meade is finally granted the restoration of his own civil rights. Also, on today's Sunrise: The economy is showing some signs of emerging from the drag of the delta variant, but the modest job gains aren't enough for Sen. Rick Scott. And with the help of funds from the federal government, Gov. Ron DeSantis marked the three-year anniversary of Hurricane Michael making landfall in Northwest Florida.
Also on today's Sunrise: — The Broward Teachers' Union launched a district-wide door-to-door canvassing effort to find nearly 11,000 students missing from their roster due to the pandemic. — Gov. Ron DeSantis shares his views on the judicial branch during the formal welcome of Justice John Couriel to the Florida Supreme Court. — Environmental advocates say more needs to be done to protect the Apalachicola River. — Today's Sunrise interview features Anna Fusco, president of Broward Teachers' Union, with a remarkable story of how they've gathered volunteers to go door-to-door to find thousands of students who've dropped off the radar completely when in-person schooling resumed. — Also, Managing Attorney for the Florida Office of EarthJustice, Tania Galloni talks about their latest appeal in ongoing “Tri-State Water Wars,” alleging that the U.S. The Army Corps of Engineers failed to properly consider environmental impacts through the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River System.
Some in Florida's congressional delegation make a pitch to rename a federal courthouse after the state's first black Supreme Court Justice. Also on today's Sunrise: — When there are no natural predators for an invasive species — making population control a sport, is one creative solution. — And many students are taking the risk by packing college football stadiums, but is it causing a spike in COVID-19 infections? — Back-to-back Sunrise interviews: First, an exclusive scoop on a story that examines whether college football games are causing a surge in COVID-19 cases. Fresh Take Florida reporter Elisabell Velazquez joins us to share her findings. — Also, Florida Politics reporter Jason Delgado talks about a bipartisan effort to rename a federal courthouse in Tallahassee after the late Justice Joseph Woodrow Hatchet. — Florida's Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announces the top predators in the invasive Lionfish Challenge. Public Information Specialist Amanda Nalley joins the program to explain.
On Capitol Hill, the Facebook whistleblower calls for government oversight of the social media giant. Also on today's Sunrise: — In Florida, lawmakers are making a call for a state Chief Diversity Officer. — And on the heels of Florida's virtual human trafficking summit, advocates say it's important to stay vigilant. — Doubling up on Sunrise interviews: First, Democratic Sen. Lori Berman who just filed a bill for Florida to create a Chief Diversity Officer. Then, Erin Collins, Executive Director of the Florida Alliance to End Human Trafficking. This comes after more than 4,000 people attended the virtual 2021 Human Trafficking Summit Tuesday featuring Attorney General Ashley Moody alongside Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin.
On today's Sunrise: — Hours after Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen broke down how the company pushes hate for profit, its platforms and services temporarily went offline. — Parents of disabled children hoping to overturn Florida's mask mandate ban are taking the fight to a federal appeals court. — The Sunrise interview is with Susan Harbin, senior government relations director for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network in Florida. Following the announcement of the breast cancer diagnosis for First Lady Casey DeSantis, Harbin will talk about the importance of early screening and detection during this Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
This weekend, hundreds of people descended on Florida's capital to protest reproductive rights in the Women's March. Also on today's Sunrise: — Several of Florida's congressional members violate a federal law banning insider stock trading. — Police confirm they've found the body of missing 19-year-old Miya Marcano near an Orlando condominium complex. — On the Sunrise interview: Dave Levinthal, the deputy Washington Bureau chief for Business Insider who uncovered at least five of Florida's congressional members violating the 2012 law designed to combat insider trading among elected officials.
Congress finally passes legislation to avoid a partial government shutdown. Also on today's Sunrise: — Gov. Ron DeSantis says he's not planning to go anywhere. We will see. — Should Florida embrace the flamingo and make it the state bird? — Congressman Greg Steube scores the big home run in the Congressional Baseball Game. — Sunrise interview is with Julie Wraithmell, executive director of Audubon Florida. As the U.S. declared this week that 23 birds, fish and other species are now extinct, Wraithmell says it should serve as a wake-up call with a commitment to doing better for all remaining species. Wraithmell also chimes in on calls by Sen. Jeff Brandes to ditch the mockingbird for a more Florida-centric state bird.
Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried announces federal help is finally on the way for low-income families. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Taking a break from his persistent legal troubles, Republican Congressman Matt Gaetz goes after the Joint Chiefs of Staff over the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. — Beginning Oct. 1, flood insurance rates are set to soar for some residents statewide. — Today's Sunrise interview is with Bob Diffenderfer, a shareholder at Lewis, Longman and Walker, where he tracks complex environmental and land use matters. Diffenderfer will weigh in about flood insurance and why some across the state will see steep insurance rate hikes.
Gov. Ron DeSantis is going after the Joe Biden administration on immigration policy. Also, on today's Sunrise: — DeSantis appoints former U.S. Attorney Larry Keefe to be Florida's public safety czar — tasked with stopping alleged criminal cartels from invading. — As the Treasury Secretary warns the U.S. could run out of cash, Sen. Rick Scott goes full partisan and lays the blame squarely on Democrats. — The Sunrise interview is with Charles Gallagher, the lead attorney challenging the Governor's ban on mask mandates in public schools. Gallagher gives an update on where the case currently stands and how his clients, parents of those students, are coping as they await a ruling.
Several teachers around the state are finding their bonus checks are bouncing. Also on today's Sunrise: — Leon County School Superintendent Rocky Hanna says he feels bullied by Gov. Ron DeSantis over mask mandates; he's calling on his school board to keep rejecting the Governor's ban. — Satellite manufacturer Terran Orbital plans to build a $300 million facility on Florida's Space Coast that will bring more than 2,000 jobs to the area. — Today's Sunrise interview is with Democratic Sen. Jason Pizzo of Miami -- after sharing a single tweet about a teacher seeing their thousand-dollar bonus checks bounce — dozens more came forward saying their state-issued checks were also no good.
Florida's redistricting website goes live, and House Redistricting Chair Tom Leek says the public will have more access than ever before. Also, on today's Sunrise: — A Pinellas-Pasco Court Judge dismissed a temporary stalking injunction filed by Congressional candidate Anna Paulina Luna against her former opponent William Braddock. — And a long corruption probe in the City of Tallahassee sparks calls for ethics reform, but that debate is growing contentious between city leaders. — The Sunrise interview is with Tallahassee City Commissioner Jack Porter — who found herself being silenced at a commission meeting as she calls for a new way of doing city business, without corruption. — And House Speaker-Designate Paul Renner talks about balancing individual freedom and looking out for the common good.
U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist is calling for the firing of Florida's new Surgeon General for changing the state's COVID-19 protocols in schools. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Once again, a speaker at a Gov. Ron DeSantis news conference spreads misinformation, decrying the loss of failed, and dangerous experimental treatments for COVID-19. — South Florida Congresswoman Frederika Wilson rails against the Joe Biden administration over the treatment of Haitian migrants. — Today's Sunrise interview features Anna Paulina Luna, a candidate for Florida's 13th Congressional District who proudly waves her recent endorsement from former President Donald Trump.
Looking beyond Texas, a state lawmaker files the “Florida Heartbeat Act” to ban abortions. Also, on today's Sunrise: — The first move from Florida's new Surgeon General, Dr. Joseph Lapado, makes quarantine optional for students exposed to COVID-19. — Florida's Haitian American lawmakers are calling on the Joe Biden administration to end the mistreatment and to stop the deportation of Haitian migrants. — A federal judge strikes down parts of Florida's immigration law, SB 168, ruling it was racially motivated. — Two Sunrise interviews — Democratic Reps. Marie Woodson and Dotie Joseph, both Haitian Americans — call for Biden to swiftly address what they call a “humanitarian crisis” and end the deportation of Haitian migrants.
Gov. Ron DeSantis has named Dr. Joseph Lapado as Florida's new Surgeon General. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried again spars with DeSantis — claiming he broke the law by independently appointing new Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Shawn Hamilton. — Reporter Renzo Downey covered the spat for Florida Politics. He says the lone Democrat on the Cabinet has found an ally. Downey was also part of team coverage on DeSantis' new agency heads. — And the Joe Biden administration is expressing horror over videos showing U.S. Border Patrol agents confronting Haitian migrants with whips on horseback.
Republican lawmakers were caught red-handed using party officials to overhaul Florida's election system. Also, on today's Sunrise: — House Democrats blast attempts by Republican leaders to make school board elections partisan. — Redistricting hearing gets underway during its first committee meeting. — Planned Parenthood is holding a rally today against Florida adopting a Texas-Style abortion ban. — Florida Politics reporter Jacob Ogles talks about sitting in on the Legislature's first meeting in the once-a-decade redistricting process.
Lawmakers are kicking off the once-a-decade redistricting process, but they continue to block the public from seeing draft maps. Also, on today's Sunrise: — This first committee week, lawmakers will try to produce a plan for what's next after Florida drops high-stakes standardized testing. Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran says something better is possible. — A newly filed bill aims to make school board elections partisan. Christian Ziegler with the Republican Party of Florida says nonpartisan races are a sham. — After an intensive search, authorities say they discovered a body Sunday in Wyoming believed to be Florida resident Gabby Petito. — The Sunrise interview jumps right into a hot topic for committee week — redistricting. The guest is Ellen Freidin, campaign chair of the drive to amend the Florida Constitution to require more compact legislative and congressional districts — through Amendments 5 and 6, passed in 2010.
Black lawmakers are saying a ban on Critical Race Theory is a political spectacle that ignores U.S. history. Also on today's Sunrise: — When it comes to the claim by Gov. Ron DeSantis that people who have had COVID-19 now have very strong immunity, PolitiFact says that's mostly true. — Now DeSantis and Sen. Marco Rubio are lashing out at the Joe Biden administration for rationing the COVID-19 antibody treatment they've been heavily promoting. — Two Sunrise interviews today: Rep. Geraldine Thompson, offers a history lesson for her colleagues calling for a ban on Critical Race Theory. Then we have PolitiFact's senior correspondent Jon Greenberg who has been tracking the Governor's natural immunity claims.
Rep. Randy Fine is filing a bill to ban the teachings of how racism has affected life throughout history and today. Also, on today's Sunrise: — When it comes to making COVID-19 data public, open government groups are saying the Sunshine State has gone dark when compared to the rest of the country. — Lying in state, former Florida Chief Justice Stephen Grimes is remembered. — Michael Barfield, Director of Public Access at the Florida Center for Government Accountability, talks about their ongoing lawsuit to get the state of Florida, particularly the Department of Health to resume sharing critical COVID-19 data. — Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried continues her weekly COVID-19 briefing. — And the Lincoln Project is launching another attack ad against Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Florida's Senate Democrats called on a critical care nurse to clear up misinformation on whether the COVID-19 vaccine changes your RNA. Also on today's Sunrise: — Gov. Ron DeSantis announces an end to high-stakes testing. — And while preparing to fight off a Texas-style abortion law, Rep. Anna Eskamani files a bill to repeal Florida's 24-hour abortion waiting period law. Eskamani is on the Sunrise interview.
Gov. Ron DeSantis allows a supporter to spread disinformation about COVID-19 vaccines during a news conference. Instead of correcting the false statement, DeSantis fanned the flames of doubt over vaccination boosters. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Attorney General Ashley Moody called President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate unlawful and Republican Congresswoman Kat Cammack vows to stop it. — On the Sunrise interview, Democratic Rep. Omari Hardy chimes in on a federal judge's decision to temporarily block Florida's anti-protest law. — And First Lady Casey DeSantis launches Hispanic Heritage Month with the theme: “Celebrating Hispanic-American Community Leaders and Champions.”
Gov. Ron DeSantis kicks off the week with a win — his ban on mask mandates is back in force. Now he's ready to spar with President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Brevard County School Board member Jennifer Jenkins says she simply can't forget the lives lost, and credits mask mandates for keeping a tough situation from getting worse. — Overcoming a breakthrough case of COVID-19, Congressman Darren Soto visits Sunrise to dive into his legislative priorities and what's on the horizon for Florida from Washington. — The Orlando Democrat is officially out of quarantine and is able to go back on the Hill in Washington to continue his work. On the Sunrise interview, Soto shares his experience dealing with COVID-19, his treatments, and tips for those working in Florida's Capitol. — During DeSantis' tour to promote monoclonal antibody treatments, Republican Congressman Gus Bilirakis praised the treatment for helping him recover faster as well as Florida Senate President Wilton Simpson.
Gov. Ron DeSantis rounds out the week with yet another legal defeat. A federal judge temporarily blocks the controversial ‘anti-riot' bill. Also on today's Sunrise: — President Joe Biden announces strict new vaccine rules on federal workers, large employers and health care staff. — Tallahassee City Commissioner and Mayor Pro-Tem Jeremy Matlow weighs in during the Sunrise interview on the sweeping corruption case which landed Former Tallahassee Mayor and City Commissioner Scott Maddox five years in prison. — DeSantis delivers big checks to Walton County for infrastructure projects, broadband, Northwest Florida Commerce Park. — In a bonus Sunrise Interview Margy Grant, CEO of Florida Realtors, discusses their decision to pursue a legislative solution instead of the affordable housing ballot initiative.
A judge once again shuts down the Governor's attempt to block local mask mandates. But even before the judge's ruling, Gov. Ron DeSantis vowed that he would fight back through appeal and win. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried touted the safety of vaccines during her COVID-19 briefing, but issued a statement calling on news outlets to stop broadcasting “the Governor's misinformation without immediate editorial correction with the facts.” — And Florida's largest teachers' union weighs in on the judge's mask ruling against the state. — On the Sunrise Interview, Andrew Spar, President of the Florida Education Association, says they are prepared for the Governor's appeal as they continue the fight to keep teachers and students safe. — And finally, a Florida Man fed up with a private road in poor condition near his Southwest Florida business produced a novel solution: plant a banana tree in a pothole to warn motorists away.
It looks like Gov. Ron DeSantis' claim that the vaccine is a mere personal choice —without impact to others — is drawing rebuke from experts across the country, including Dr. Anthony Fauci. Also on today's Sunrise: — Meanwhile, Broward and several other school districts have mounted a new legal challenge against the state's mask mandate. — DeSantis announced a three-part proposal to recruit law enforcement but took the opportunity to criticize those calling for police reform. — That hit a nerve with groups like the Tallahassee Chapter of the NAACP saying it's the Governor's own rhetoric that's making it hard to recruit those who want to serve. — Imagine being a health care reporter during a pandemic, we hear from one who is looking ahead to 2022 Legislative Session. On the Sunrise Interview is Christine Sexton, a returning health care reporter for Florida Politics. — Next, a dive into the law enforcement beat, where the Governor flexes his power to squash anyone calling to defund the police. However, groups like the NAACP argue the Governor's rhetoric is a disservice to law enforcement.
Sunrise welcomes new host Trimmel Gomes, reporting from the Florida Capitol, where the Governor and Republican legislators are gearing up to steal a page out of the Texas playbook when it comes to abortion. Also on today's Sunrise: — Republican Rep. Anthony Sabatini says there is no question Florida will mimic Texas, as he's already working to file a heartbeat bill himself. — Meanwhile, a chorus of women leaders are fighting back, including Democratic Rep. Anna Eskamani. — On Monday, Florida reported 46,105 more COVID-19 cases and 1,064 additional deaths to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Gov. Ron DeSantis continues his statewide campaign for monoclonal antibody treatments. — In non-COVID-19 news, several Florida groups rally to help resettle Afghan refugees. — On the Sunrise Interview is Matt Schmitt, associate director of Catholic Charities Jacksonville, who is preparing to handle a surge of over 150 Afghan refugees to the region. — And finally, the stories of two Florida Men … with guns.
Gov. Ron DeSantis plans to appeal a judge's ruling that allows local school boards to impose mask mandates. The promise to appeal came on the same day the Joe Biden administration announced it was opening civil rights investigations into five states with policies banning school districts from requiring masks. Also, on today's #Sunrise: — For the third week in a row, we've had more than 150,000 new cases of COVID-19 and Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried says kids are hit hard. — But DeSantis doesn't seem to be too worried about those sick kids. He says many of those cases are minor. — In non-COVID-19 news, Fried has released a new report documenting harm suffered by Florida growers from Mexican imports. — Pollster and pundit Steve Vancore visits Rick Flagg for his last show. — And finally, the stories of two Florida Men: One has been indicted for embezzling $12 million from companies trying to buy personal protective equipment; the other pulled a gun in a barbershop ... and the owner shot him.
Tomorrow is Rick Flagg's final episode before retiring; Sunrise 2.0 with Trimmel Gomes will premiere next Monday. Also on today's Sunrise: — About that mask mandate; the one the Governor tried to ban. Tallahassee Circuit Judge John Cooper decided Ron DeSantis' order is unconstitutional and local school boards are free to adopt mask mandates WITHOUT a parental opt-out if they think that's the best way to contain the COVID 19 outbreak. — The newly approved "Parents Bill of Rights" that the Department of Education tried to use to force school districts to do their bidding. In effect, the state has been hoisted on its own petard. — For the third week in a row, the Department of Health reports 150,000 cases and an average of more than 200 deaths per day. Or as the Governor describes it, a seasonal fluctuation. — What did DeSantis have to say about those deaths during an appearance on FOX? He was never asked. But he did blame Joe Biden for letting COVID-19 cross the border. — One of the Governor's medical advisers is recommending a horse deworming medicine to treat COVID 19. The company that makes the drug says that's pretty stupid. — A woman who signed up to be a state prison guard is killed while training to use firearms. — And a Quincy man who worked as a federal prison guard will spend two years in jail after admitting he raped female inmates in Marianna and Tallahassee. — And finally, two Florida person stories: A Florida Man and Woman are wounded during a shootout between a boat and jet skiers, and a Florida Woman goes to jail for taking a whizz outside her car.
Judge John Cooper is set to announce his decision on the lawsuit over the Governor's ban on mask mandates. On the one side you have parents who support a mask mandate: on the other side, the Governor and the state education bureaucracy. Also on today's Sunrise: — No matter how the judge rules, an appeal is certain. Gov. Ron DeSantis really wants to punish the local officials who have imposed mask mandates against his order. — Attorney General Ashley Moody announces a settlement with the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence — about $5 million. — And finally, two Florida Person stories. One is a Florida Man who fell asleep at Wendy's drive-thru; the other is a Florida Woman who scammed her co-workers out of their sick time for numerous medical maladies — all of them fake.
The trial over the Governor's ban on mask mandates enters its fourth day. A group of parents is challenging Gov. Ron DeSantis' prohibition on mask mandates, and they're asking the tough questions. They really didn't have answers. Also, on today's Sunrise: — A new poll from Quinnipiac shows 60% of Floridians support mask mandates, and two-thirds of them say masking up is about public health; only a third say is about individual freedom. But don't tell that to the Governor … he's still ticked off at the districts that opposed his emergency order. — They talk about mandatory masks, but there's a loophole: All it takes is a note from the doctor. And a Tallahassee physician is banned from his hospital for offering notes for $50 apiece. — DeSantis held another news conference to open a Regeneron treatment center, but his medical advisor says don't forget to get vaccinated. — And finally, a Florida Man got his job back after being fired for using the N-word.
It's the third and final day of the trial over mask mandates in public schools. But the state's chief witness — Dr. Jay Bhattacharya — says masks didn't stop COVID-19 last year and won't stop it now. Also, on today's Sunrise: — The entire sixth grade at Round Lake Charter School in Mount Dora goes into quarantine. — Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried says the COVID-19 numbers aren't getting any better. — The COVID-19 crisis is so bad in Sarasota now that one hospital rented a refrigerated truck to serve as a temporary morgue. — In political news, the ghost candidate who ran as a spoiler in a state Senate race has pleaded guilty to two felonies and will testify against Frank Artiles, the ex-lawmaker and GOP strategist who paid him to run as an independent. — And finally, two Florida person stories: One is a nurse who went drunken driving and hit a rehab facility; the other is a Florida couple busted for drugs in matching Simpson's T-shirts.
Circuit Judge John Cooper is hearing legal arguments in a trial over the Governor's right to ban mask mandates at local schools. But attorneys for the Governor say he did nothing wrong. The trial continues today. Also on today's Sunrise: — Another day on the road with Ron DeSantis as he continues to plug Regeneron in St. Lucie, Alachua and Englewood. — Remember that awful photo last week of a woman lying on the floor of a Regeneron center in Jacksonville writhing in pain while they waited? Turns out she's OK. — What do you get when you combine a mask supporter with a podium mic with an anti-masker holding a megaphone? Chaos. — And finally, police are accusing a Florida Woman of throwing her pussy in the river. His name was Stanley.
Floridians are anxiously awaiting the latest in the modern-day soap opera that is Florida's anti-mask mandate. Also, on today's Sunrise: — But the Governor has no intention of moving on and relishes a showdown with the Joe Biden administration. — The latest COVID-19 stats show almost 151,000 cases and 1,486 deaths in the past week. But Ron DeSantis says the worst may be over. — The Governor opens three more Regeneron centers where people with COVID-19 can be treated before they end up in a hospital. Sen. Kathleen Passidomo says they were a huge help when she and her husband caught COVID-19. — The unemployment rate is up again. Florida created 68,000 new jobs, but the workforce grew by 83,000. — Wedding bells for Matt Gaetz in Southern California. — And finally, the story of a Florida Man charged with a felony over a Snickers Bar. If only he hadn't pulled out that pocketknife.
Three more school boards have rebelled against the Governor and imposed mandatory mask rules. Gov. Ron DeSantis says it's another sign of America's decline. Also on today's Sunrise: — He brought it all back to masks at the end … honestly. Meanwhile, the state Agriculture Commissioner has the latest stats from the CDC. — The Governor opens two new centers where you can get the Regeneron treatment. And it's free. — And you just knew he would find a way to plug Donald Trump. — Pat Diaz talks about the staffing crisis in hospitals from COVID-19. — And finally, a Florida Man ordered a life-size bronze statue of himself and billed taxpayers $75,000.
The Governor says out loud what we've all been thinking; in Ron DeSantis World, he's the victim … not the one slinging bullshit. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Miami-Dade's school superintendent draws a line in the sand. He opposes the Governor's emergency order that forbids mandatory mask policies at public schools and told the Board of Education their threats mean nothing to him. — Florida Democrats in Congress are criticizing the Governor's mask policy … or lack thereof. And they blame DeSantis for the resurgence of COVID-19 in Florida. — And finally, two Florida Men: One used a bogus credit card to steal $10,000 worth of home improvement supplies from a Home Depot. The other has his phone in one hand — and his dick in the other.
COVID-19 casualties continue to pile up in Florida. Also, on today's Sunrise: — The Florida Board of Education votes to crack down on two school districts accused of trying to protect their students from COVID-19. Alachua and Broward are being punished for refusing to make masks optional. — Charlie Crist comes out swinging in the battle over face masks, with his first commercial attacking Ron DeSantis over his COVID-19 response. It will not be the last. — The Governor announces another site for COVID-19 sufferers to get monoclonal antibodies. — And since when did DeSantis become a pitchman for Regeneron? There's a theory on that. — And finally, a Florida Man and his Florida Woman used bogus vaccine passports to travel to Hawaii.
High school student JJ Holmes is pleading with the Governor to let districts adopt masking policies so he can go back to school. JJ has cerebral palsy; he's confined to a wheelchair, and can't go back to school if the other kids don't have to wear a mask. Also, on today's Sunrise: — JJ appeared courtesy of Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, who continues to attack the Governor's entire response to the COVID-19 crisis. — The Governor held a news conference in Orlando Monday to talk about treating COVID-19 patients with Regeneron treatment … a monoclonal antibody cocktail for people who already have this disease. He even brought one of his top health bureaucrats because her daughter was treated with monoclonal antibodies. — But Democrats in the Legislature says there is so much more the Governor should be doing to help hospitals deal with the new wave of COVID-19 cases. — And finally, two stories: A Florida Man who can steal your catalytic converter in 90 seconds flat and a Florida Woman arrested for exposing his breasts to her husband ... in jail.
The showdown over masks in schools is heading to court. Parents are suing the state over the Governor's ban on mask mandates and the state wants the court to dismiss the lawsuit without a full hearing. Also, on today's Sunrise: — The state plans to file a motion to dismiss before noon … a decision could come by the end of the week. — The Governor's "no mask mandate" is also playing out in the court of public opinion. School boards in Alachua and Broward have ignored Ron DeSantis' threat to cut their funding if they require students to mask up. — Broward County School Board Chair Rosalind Osgood says they know from firsthand experience that masks prevent the spread of the COVID-19. — It was quite a week in Florida: 152,000 cases of COVID-19 and 1,071 fatalities. Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried says we're doing worse than Third World nations — all of them. — And finally, the stories of two Florida Men: One was busted for threatening Disney executives with C-4 plastic explosives and hand grenades; the other stole $13 million and spent it on internet porn.
The body of the legendary FSU Football coach Bobby Bowden will lie in state in the Historic Capitol from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. for public viewing. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for charitable contributions to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Also on today's Sunrise: — Gov. Ron DeSantis is dropping hints that the state may resume daily COVID-19 reports after cutting back to weekly reports in June — just before the summer spike began. But now the Governor says they can use those county-by-county breakdowns. — House Democrats want more than just maybe. They want numbers. But until the state starts publishing those numbers again, Nikki Fried says you can always count on the feds. — DeSantis is starting a new program to treat COVID-19 victims with Regeneron, and for once it sounds like he's taking the delta variant seriously. — The Governor's Office is also conceding they don't have the authority to withhold the salaries of school board members and superintendents who voted to impose mask mandates at local schools. — Sunrise looks at vaccine hesitancy and how to talk with people who won't get the shot. — And finally, three Florida Men used a shark to open a can of beer.
The battle over mask mandates in schools is getting tense. Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran is warning Broward County schools to rescind their mask mandate or face sanctions … but the Joe Biden administration says it will work to bypass the Ron DeSantis administration. Also on today's Sunrise: — The Governor is still spinning the stats for kids who are sick with COVID-19. Despite the surge in pediatric cases, DeSantis insists the proportions of kids infected with the disease are the same as last year. — Once again, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is appealing to DeSantis to change his mind about masks and start talking about the surge in COVID-19 cases. — They may not want to talk about COVID-19 right now, but DeSantis and friends have started handing out $1,000 checks to teachers ... a reward for their service last year during the pandemic. So, you had Corcoran threatening to cut off funding for districts that impose mask mandates while also handing out checks to teachers who masked up last year. — And finally, two Florida Men: One is suing Facebook over censorship, the other is nursing a head wound after trying to hide from a police dog.
Democrats in the House are urging school boards to ignore the Governor's ban on school mask mandates and stand up for student safety. But Gov. Ron DeSantis says parents need to make that decision … not school boards and superintendents. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Are there limits when your choice affects other children? — Meanwhile, more school districts say they will ignore the Governor's orders against mask mandates. The latest is Broward County. — DeSantis and the CDC are disputing some new case numbers and the result could be the resumption of daily COVID-19 reports by the Florida Department of Health. — The Governor starts handing out bonus checks to law enforcement. — And finally, a Florida man got lost on a golf cart. He was searching for a Chili's but ended up in jail.
It's turned into Nikki Fried day; she's all over Sunrise. For starters, she continues to do the Governor's job supplying updates on COVID-19. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Gov. Ron DeSantis has insisted masks CANNOT be mandatory when classes resume, but school board members say they're the ones who should make that decision. — You'll hear from Lila Harley, the young girl from Jacksonville who wrote a letter to her school board pleading for a mask mandate. — Fried is also urging local officials to ignore the Governor's "no mask mandate" when they make plans for the upcoming school year. — And finally, two Florida Men: One put hidden cameras in the bathroom of his martial arts studio; the other bit off part of another man's ear.
Florida's COVID-19 crisis shows no sign of slowing down. In fact, it's getting worse. Also on today's Sunrise: — More people are hospitalized than ever … but the Governor is trying to dismiss those numbers by say it's all part of the cycle. — Florida's kids are heading back to school and Gov. Ron DeSantis is sticking to his guns … saying local school districts cannot require students to wear a mask. — The state Board of Education weighed in, but not in a good way. They adopted an emergency rule saying students shamed for refusing to wear a mask in school are eligible for a scholarship to a private school. — The rule was approved unanimously by the Governor's supporters who serve on the board. — And finally, two Florida Men: One of them had to call a professional trapper to get rid of a toilet iguana; the other died of COVID-19 after downplaying the epidemic.
Gov. Ron DeSantis held a secret meeting on COVID-19. No reporters in the room mean no embarrassing questions about the rise in cases. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Democrats in the Legislature are piling on DeSantis. Sen. Annette Taddeo wants the Governor to declare a state of emergency and Sen. Audrey Gibson wants him to order the health department to return to daily reporting of COVID-19 stats. — Congressman Charlie Crist, who is running for Governor, says DeSantis is more concerned with a run for the White House than he is about the surge in COVID-19 cases. — And as long as the Governor is ignoring the issue, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried — also running for Governor — decided to start holding her own news conferences on the COVID-19 crisis. — In Washington, the House holds its first hearing on the Insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, much to the dismay of Congressman Matt Gaetz. — Speaking of Gaetz, his future sister-in-law describes him as “weird and creepy.” Roxanne Luckey posted a video on social media describing how he encouraged a colleague in his mid-30s to ask her out when she was a 19-year-old Capitol intern. — And finally, a Florida man wanted to walk to New York in a water bubble.
Florida's Department of Health has disturbing news about COVID-19: The number of new cases went up by 60% last week, but don't worry. Ron DeSantis says those counts don't count. Also on today's Sunrise: — The number of fatalities was also up by almost 44%. Those numbers do count. — Yet, DeSantis is still pursuing his strategy of downplaying the threat and inviting tourists to come on down because Florida is open for business. Except, of course, for those 38,670 Floridians who have been killed by COVID-19. — So, how do you encourage people to get vaccinated? FAMU President Larry Robinson is making a video appeal to students who are returning to campus. Just in case that doesn't work, FAMU will also be giving away a million dollars' worth of merchandise for staff and students who get the shot. — In the aftermath of the Surfside tragedy, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried wants the Legislature to update condo regs and create a statewide commission to hear complaints. — Florida's Chief Financial Officer gets down to the business of reforming NICO (the Birth-Related Neurological Injury Compensation Association). His appointment to the new board is a good sign. — And finally, two Florida Men: One is going to the federal pen for child pornography; the other went to the hospital after showing off with a gun.
Gov. Ron DeSantis draws a line in the sand — masks will not be mandated in schools. And if the feds try to force the issue, the Governor says he'll call the Legislature back into Session to do something about it. Also, on today's Sunrise: — Meanwhile, a group of doctors in Miami says DeSantis should less time attacking Dr. Anthony Fauci and more time talking up the vaccines. — A ceremonial signing for House Bill 3, the $200 million plan to provide free books to kids from kindergarten to the fifth grade who are having trouble reading at their grade level. — A conversation with two lawmakers on opposite sides of the aisle. First up is Republican Rep. Fiona McFarland of Tampa, followed by Democrat Sen. Shevrin Jones of Miami Gardens. — And finally, a Florida Man beat up his Uber driver and carjacked his SUV.