Five of today’s top Florida political stories at your fingertips:
Cruz holds hearing on space exploration with Buzz Aldrin, other astronauts – Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who just took over leadership of the Senate’s space committee, hosted Buzz Aldrin and other former NASA astronauts on Capitol Hill Tuesday for a discussion on space exploration. Cruz opened Tuesday’s hearing of the subcommittee on Space, Science, and Competitiveness by calling for more NASA and commercial space activity. “The year 2015 is just as critical of a time for our national and commercial space programs as was the case a half century ago,” the Texas Republican said. Read more
Republicans Vow Obama’s Veto Won’t Finish Keystone XL Pipeline – President Obama was as good as his word Tuesday, vetoing the Keystone XL pipeline days ahead of his deadline to make the decision. It was only the third time during his presidency that he elected to use his veto power. But Republican leaders warned the president he is “sadly mistaken” if he thinks a veto is the end of the fight … In Florida, Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services Adam Putnam was distraught enough over the veto to issue a statement Tuesday. Read more
Florida Gov. Scott officially suspends 11th grade test – Florida Gov. Rick Scott is officially suspending a standardized test that the state’s 11th graders were supposed to take this spring. Scott on Tuesday signed an executive order that directs Education Commissioner Pam Stewart to suspend the test. The governor, last week, said that there was too much testing going on in Florida’s schools. He then said he planned to use his executive power to stop the administration of the English language arts test for high school juniors. The test is based on new standards drawn primarily from Common Core standards. Read more
Over 200 Florida businesses join coalition to pass Competitive Workforce Act – On Tuesday, Florida reached a milestone in the growing battle for fair, equitable and competitive workplaces throughout the state. Florida Businesses for a Competitive Workforce announced more than 200 Florida employers; both large and small, have now joined the fight to support passage of the Florida Competitive Workforce Act. State legislators are currently considering two bipartisan proposals — House Bill 33, filed by Key Largo Republican State Rep. Holly Raschein and Senate Bill 156, filed by Democratic State Sen. Joe Abruzzo from Wellington – known as the Competitive Workforce Act. Read more
White House invites GOP congressman to Miami immigration event, but denies him Air Force One seat – The White House invited Miami Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo to President Obama’s immigration event Wednesday at Florida International University, which is in Curbelo’s district. But the congressman apparently won’t be able to make it. Curbelo said that, after receiving the emailed invitation Monday night, he tried to rearrange his travel plans from Washington D.C., where Congress is in session, to attend. Unable to find only early-morning flights that would require missing a full day of votes, Curbelo said he inquired about hitching a ride with Obama on Air Force One, which is scheduled to leave D.C. around noon. For example, U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson of Miami Gardens — a Democrat — will be traveling with the president. Read more
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