The Florida Senate, with 40 members with four-year terms compared to the House's 120 members with two-year terms, is known as the more deliberative of the two bodies. Some of the House's more outlandish bills often die for lack of support in the Senate.
But, ultimately, state senators must wrestle with the same thorny issues confronting House members -- the stalled economy, a growing deficit in the face of flat revenue that must be reconciled to reach a balanced budget, a desperate need to reform Medicaid, redrawing state and congressional district seats and much more. Today we begin our recommendations for the state Senate.
Democrat Gwen Margolis won the August primary to replace Dan Gelber in this North Miami-Dade County coastal district, which covers northern Miami Beach, Aventura and a bit of Hallandale Beach in Broward. She is opposed by Corey Poitier, a nonparty-affiliated candidate.
Ms. Margolis, 75, is truly a veteran politician. She was the first woman to become president of the Florida Senate from 1990 to 1992. She began as a representative in the House in 1974, switching to the Senate in 1980. After eight years on the Miami-Dade County Commission from 1994 to 2002, Ms. Margolis returned to the state Senate from 2002-08.
Ms. Margolis wants to tax Internet sales and increase taxes on Indian gambling proceeds to boost state revenues. She says one of the Legislature's worst mistakes was to raid the transportation trust fund because it meant fewer road construction jobs during a bad economy. For Florida Senate, District 35, The Herald recommends GWEN MARGOLIS.