GOP Caves In To Jim Waldman


It apparently took a Democrat to tell the Republican leadership in Tallahassee what was right.

The Democrat was state Rep. Jim Waldman, D-Coconut Creek.

Florida House Rules Chairman Bill Galvano ruled today that Waldman was right and that a new election must be held for speaker.

Waldman had complained that it was a violation of House rules to automatically name Speaker Pro-Tempore Larry Cretul to the speaker’s chair without an election.

Cretul was elevated to the job last week by Speaker Ray Sansom, who resigned amid a widening scandal.

GOP leaders originally hoped to avoid an election.  They said Cretul would serve through the session without facing a vote. 

Speakers are elected by the representatives to lead the House.

Waldman, who is the Democratic House members’ rules liaison, immediately complained.  He said that naming Cretul speaker for any extended period without an election violated the House’s own rules.

He sent a letter with his views to Galvano on Saturday.  Galvano acted today.

Most likely the election for the next speaker will go smoothly and Cretul will be formally named.  But word on state political blogs today was that state Rep. Carl Domino, R-Jupiter, was “interested” in the job.

If Domino or some other member runs, it would trigger contentious race for speaker and dissention in Republican ranks just weeks before the March start of the 2009 session.




2 Responses to “GOP Caves In To Jim Waldman”

  1. Democrat says:

    Our great Republican legislators see what the rules called for in this matter. It took a Democrat to get things done. Now all we need is more Democrats in Tallahassee.

  2. The Rules says:

    It takes a special brand of arrogance to appoint a Speaker to the Florida House in clear violation of the rules that require taking a vote. I really just don’t know whether Florida would be better off with Democrats instead of Republicans in charge of the capital. But I’m prepared to take the risk because what I see right now is pretty unimpressive.