Join Jim and Greg as they serve up three new martinis Thursday! First, they applaud the Florida State Senate for permanently removing former Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel after his horrific leadership before, during, and after the Parkland high school shooting. They also shudder as a majority of Americans favor rewriting the first amendment and nearly half want to ban hate speech without ever defining what it is. And they discuss the high drama on Capitol Hill as Democrats conduct impeachment-related depositions in secret and Republicans hold a sit-in to protest what they see as a lack of transparency.
A former Jackson County, Florida, sheriff’s deputy is facing 52 felony charges in connection with allegedly planting drugs on motorists he pulled over.
According to the charges and released body cam footage, Zach Wester allegedly framed a minimum of 10 people, some of whom were involved in court-ordered recovery programs. One victim even lost custody of his daughter because of Wester’s corrupt actions.
How did Wester plant drugs in people’s cars? How was he caught? How did authorities respond to the allegations? What constitutional protections did most of the victims forget to invoke?
Reason.com reporter C.J. Ciaramella chronicled this horrible case on Wednesday. He joins Greg Corombos for a closer look at the details and whether there is evidence of this becoming a bigger problem in the U.S.
According to Broward County officials, Florida is set to receive many illegal immigrants but has no plan on how to care for them. Montie Montgomery reports.
In November, Ron DeSantis was in the midst of a national political drama, as Florida officials conducted a recount to determine whether his slim victory would hold up. Now, just two months into the job, DeSantis is piling up a flurry of accomplishments and winning praise from across the political spectrum.
“He eventually won by 32,000 votes or 0.4 percent of the vote. He kind of went off the radar. but what this man has been doing off the radar is just amazing in terms of what he’s trying to do and what he’s accomplished and he’s getting kudos on both sides for being so energetic and so successful,” said syndicated columnist and National Review Contributing Editor Deroy Murdock.
Since taking office in January, DeSantis has replaced three Florida Supreme Court justices who were term-limited by age and worked to remove burdensome government mandates to get licensed for certain jobs. He also accepted the resignations of two elections officials at the center of last year’s vote-counting mess. DeSantis also removed Broward County Cheriff Scott Israel over his performance before, during, and after the school shooting in Parkland.
The governor has also gone to bat for hurricane survivors to the federal government. He’s also ended Common Core education policies and thrilled partisans of all stripes in replacing the members of an important water commission in hopes of cleaning up the environment.
DeSantis served in the U.S. House of Representatives before winning the governor’s office over Democrat Andrew Gillum. Murdock says that’s not an easy shift to navigate.
“I’ve seen very few people make that transition from Congress to becoming an executive as effectively and as swiftly as he has. It’s really quite stunning,” said Murdock.
Murdock believes DeSantis ultimately won the election because of his support for school choice, a position that won him 18 percent of the vote from black women who want more options for their kids. Not only did that help DeSantis, but Murdock thinks it’s a road map for other GOP candidates.
“If he can keep this us, it’s a model for other Republicans to go out in the black community, push school choice which is very important. Just ask black parents, ‘You tend to vote Democrat. How are those Democrat-run schools doing? how’s your Democrat school board doing? Are your kids learning anything?” said Murdock.
Listen to the full podcast to hear how DeSantis is not only soaring above 60 percent approval in the state, how well he is doing among voters usually repelled by the GOP, and whether the popularity of DeSantis can help President Trump in 2020.
Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America enthusiastically cheer the first two months of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and point out that good things can happen when a leader hits the ground running on the things they promised to do. They also wince as just six House Democrats agree that illegal immigrants shouldn’t be voting. And they wonder if millennials are really far to the left or whether they embrace labels they don’t quite understand as 73 percent favor the government instituting universal health care but 79 percent want to keep private insurance.
Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud new Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for suspending Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel and naming two stellar judges to the Florida Supreme Court. They also discuss Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard joining the 2020 presidential race and how her defense of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad could impact the campaign. And as many breathlessly await the Mueller report on Russian meddling in the 2016 campaign, ABC’s Jonathan Karl reports that the report will likely be anti-climactic.
Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America welcome the news the Republicans Ron DeSantis and Rick Scott are officially the winners in the hotly contested Florida races and that Broward County elections chief Brenda Snipes is resigning after 15 years of incompetence and worse. They also shake their heads as a retired U.S. Navy admiral contends President Trump’s treatment of the media is the greatest threat to democracy in his lifetime and Trump responds by calling the admiral a Hillary supporter who should have killed Osama bin Laden a lot sooner. And they chronicle the staggering change in CNN commentator Kirsten Powers, who wrote a book on how the left is killing free speech but now says anyone who votes for Trump is a racist and that white women who back the president have joined forces with the patriarchy that oppresses them.
Controversy has erupted in Florida, as Democrats in Broward County say they are still counting votes and want to be sure every voice is heard while Republicans say officials are violating canvassing laws and might be engaging in vote fraud as the newly found votes are breaking massively for Democratic candidates.
A lot is at stake in who wind the governorship, the U.S. Senate seat, and a number of other statewide offices. That’s why well over $100 million was spent on the Senate race alone and special interests also poured money into the governor’s race.
Listen to the interview with Power the Future Executive Director Daniel Turner as he describes how much money from billionaire Democrats got spent in Florida, how that money may be impacting the post-election controversy, and what the outcome will mean for Florida.
A week after Hurricane Michael roared ashore along the Florida Panhandle, residents are still very early in the recovery and clean-up phases, but help is already there to meet every need in the devastated communities.
Samaritan’s Purse, the Christian relief organization founded by Rev. Franklin Graham, is on scene. It’s program director for U.S. Disaster Response, Tim Haas, says the hurricane left a trail of destruction he’s rarely seen in his years of ministering to communities suffering from natural disasters.
“It’s vast. It’s very widespread,” said Haas, who says he encountered a lot of damage while still hours away from where the storm came ashore.
He says the hardest hit areas are reeling.
“It’s a lot of houses that have trees all over the place in the yard. Many of the trees are still on the homes. Power outage is widespread. Services are down and are trying to come down as soon as possible,” said Haas.
“There’s still active search and rescue. There are still numbers of people who have not been accounted for. Pray for those who are missing. Pray for those who are waiting to hear word,” said Haas.
Samaritan’s Purse is already busy helping residents clean out debris and protect their homes from further damage.
“With many house and with many roofs , they’re not structurally sound. They’re not weatherproof. So we’re endeavoring to tarp as many roofs as we can before we we have the next rain.
“And as we get closer to the water and closer to areas where surge and/or flood is the issue, we will be mudding those houses out and helping to dry them out so that at some point in the future they can rebuild and get back in their homes,” said Haas.
Haas says is blown away by how thankful people are for the help.
“They’re quick to give a hug and express how deeply they appreciate the fact they are not forgotten. Even if we were just to pick up one stick, it’s one stick that they don’t have to pick up. The people here are so appreciative. This is a hard-working community,” said Haas.
Cleanup in northern Florida and even in Georgia is going to take a long time. Haas invites any Americans who are handy and have a desire to serve to go to spvolunteer.org to schedule a time to come and help, whether that is soon or even weeks or months from now.
But he says the greatest need is for Americans to pray for the people impacted by the storms.
“The people that have been affected by this storm, they need prayer support. We need prayer support for safety. We need prayers that god would move in such a way that the hopelessness of people is found with the hope of Christ,” said Haas.
While Samaritan’s Purse is fully committed to helping people rebuild their homes and communities, Haas says there’s an even higher calling.
“Our goal is to share hope through the gospel and to tell people that Jesus loves them, to tell people that Jesus has not forgotten them, and to be able to point them to churches that are shining brightly in these communities.
“People who don’t come to churches are coming to churches are coming to churches. Churches are stepping up to be the beacon of hope and to be those places people go [to have] questions answered. Samaritan’s Purse sees ourselves, humbly, as the ability to support these churches, to support those who are already ministering in this area,” said Haas.
Listen to the full podcast to hear Haas describe the decimated town of Mexico Beach and a powerful encounter he had with one of the residents.
President Trump visited the Florida communities devastated by Hurricane Michael on Monday, but while the needs are great, the head of the American Red Cross says relief workers are up to the challenge.
Hurricane Michael formed off the western coast of Cuba last week and then roared ashore in the Florida panhandle at nearly Category Five strength, effectively destroying some towns.
“This is one of the worst that I’ve seen because it was a hurricane that sort of behaved like a tornado,” said American Red Cross President and CEO Gail McGovern.
The storm then behaved more like a hurricane as it moved into Georgia and Alabama and up to the Carolinas and Virginia.
“It’s just heartbreaking. I have to say our hearts go out to anyone who was impacted by Hurricane Michael. It was really devastating. Schools are gone, homes are gone, businesses are gone,” said McGovern.
The Red Cross prepositions supplies in preparation for disasters like this and tries to shuttle in relief workers as well. She says this storm is very personal for some of their volunteers.
“We have employees and volunteers who are in the impacted area year-round. We don’t pack up and go home. This is our home,” said McGovern.
While well-prepared, McGovern says there are pressing needs.
“The roads have debris on them, the power is out, communication is challenging because some of the cell towers are out. It’s been quite a challenge on the ground,” said McGovern.
To date, the Red Cross is operating 27 shelters in the Florida panhandle. At the peak, 10,000 people were staying in them. More than 125,000 meals and snacks have already been given out.
Listen to the full podcast to hear more about the challenges in Florida and other areas devastated by Hurricane Michael and find out the various ways you can help those in need.