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Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission took over a year to formally propose eight amendments for this year’s ballot. In reality, the eight were a mash-up of supposedly similar items. Similar, that is, if you consider offshore oil drilling and indoor vaping to be vaguely in the same category.

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In the 2020 election, some, but not all, South Sarasota County voters will get to cast ballots for County Commissioner Nancy Detert of Venice, if she runs for re-election.

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The race for the Sarasota County Commission District 4 seat pits an incumbent Republican with strong ties to the business and development community against a young Democrat making her first foray into elective politics.

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Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission took over a year to formally propose eight amendments for this year’s ballot. In reality, the eight were a mash-up of supposedly similar items. Similar, that is, if you consider offshore oil drilling and indoor vaping to be vaguely in the same category.

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Constitutional Amendment 5 on this year’s ballot is little more than the gift of an excuse for lawmakers to use when they do not properly fund programs such as education, health care and mental health.

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It is rare that we recommend passage of any amendment to our state Constitution. We believe it is the duty of our elected representatives to take care of business and not have to pass their responsibility to amendments that can be created by the public or special interests.

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Amendment 3 is surely a contentious issue, as there are Floridians for and strongly against casino gambling.

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Two Venice City Council seats were supposed to be filled in this year’s General Election, but no one decided to challenge incumbent Rich Cautero in his bid for another three-year term. He’s in.

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Telling people to vote against a state constitutional amendment that might save them money on taxes seems like a losing cause.

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Sarasota County voters will dig their way through an especially long ballot this year, thanks to the many proposed state constitutional amendments (the number now is 12, but some may be deleted by the courts) and a higher-than-usual number of local referendums.

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In the race for the open state Senate District 23 seat, well-known Republican Party stalwart Rep. Joe Gruters, District 73-Sarasota; faces political newcomer Faith Olivia Babis, a Democrat and disability rights activist.

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Newcomer Tony Mowry, a Democrat, faces newcomer James Buchanan, a Republican, in the race for the House District 74 seat left open by the departure of two-term Rep. Julio Gonzalez of Venice.

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