Author

Diane Rado

Diane Rado

Diane Rado has covered state and local government and public schools in six states over some 30 years, focusing on policy and investigative stories as well as legislative and political reporting. She spent most of her career at the St. Petersburg (Tampa Bay) Times and the Chicago Tribune. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and did a fellowship in education reform at the University of Michigan in 1999-2000. She is married to a journalist and has three adult children.

FL Sen. Bobby Powell’s soliloquy: ‘I wake up every day knowing that I’m going to have to fight’

By: - April 20, 2022

During this week’s special legislative session on congressional redistricting and other bills, State Sen. Bobby Powell’s poignant remarks in the Florida Senate on Wednesday showed the trajectory of his feelings as a Black man and a Black lawmaker. Powell, a Democrat, represents parts of Palm Beach County. He’s been in leadership roles, including Democratic Leader […]

Some lawmakers are sitting out in FL’s special legislative session

By: - April 19, 2022

State Sen. Annette Taddeo of Miami-Dade said Tuesday that she’ll be boycotting the special session that launches this afternoon Tuesday in the House and Senate. “It’s a decision I do not take lightly,”  Taddeo said in a letter Tuesday to Senate President Wilton Simpson. A Democrat, Taddeo also is a 2022 gubernatorial candidate in the […]

Just a handful of GOP lawmakers said yes to property insurance session; DeSantis in support

By: - April 18, 2022

A Florida Department of State poll — to see if enough lawmakers would go along with a special session on the state’s property insurance crisis — failed Monday afternoon, state records show. But Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday had already announced that he’d call legislators back to the capital in May to confront the […]

Key lawmakers push to convene for another special session, this time over property insurance woes

By: and - April 11, 2022

With about a week to go before the Florida Legislature launches a special session on a new congressional districts map, key lawmakers are pushing hard to convene for another session: property insurance woes. On Monday, Senate Democratic leader Lauren Book wrote a letter to Gov. Ron DeSantis, saying that: “Florida is nearing a tipping point, […]

DeSantis okays emergency care on minors in more places and without parental consent

By: - April 7, 2022

Doctors will be able to perform emergency medical care on minors in various locations — from soccer fields to grocery stores and other venues — without parental consent, according to Gov. Ron DeSantis. The governor signed the bill, HB 817, on Wednesday evening, part of a stack of bills passed by the Florida Legislature in […]

After uproar in FL Legislature, new law changes language describing Black children

By: - April 7, 2022

Gov. Ron DeSantis has signed into law a bill that will essentially change the way Black children are portrayed and described in Florida law. The legislation, HB 893, was one of 42 bills approved by DeSantis Wednesday evening, part of a stack of bills that the Florida Legislature passed in the 2022 legislative session. In […]

Fast-rising, more contagious omicron BA.2 makes up 72 percent of variants in the U.S.

By: - April 5, 2022

The omicron subvariant BA.2 has jumped to 72.2 percent of new COVID-19 infections in the United States, with Florida and other states seeing how quickly BA.2 has taken over in the ongoing pandemic. At the end of February, BA.2 represented just 7.5 percent of variants circulating around the country. Six weeks later, the figure spiked […]

CDC estimate: BA.2 omicron takes over, with 54.9 percent of new infections in U.S.

By: - March 29, 2022

An omicron subvariant labeled BA.2 has spiked to 54.9 percent of new infections in the United States, federal officials estimated Tuesday, showing a trajectory that rose rapidly within a month’s time. On March 5, BA.2 represented 14.3 percent of new infections; March 12, the figure was 27.8 percent and March 19, 39 percent, according to […]

FL criminal defense lawyers: Supreme Court nominee Jackson shouldn’t be ‘shamed’ for serving as a public defender

By: - March 21, 2022

As the nation watched the confirmation hearing Monday for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers spoke out in support of Jackson’s “eminently qualified” background, though she has some detractors. “Unfortunately, some senators question Judge Jackson‘s capability to serve as a justice because she once was a criminal […]

Floridians in the dark as secrecy abounds following the 2022 legislative session

By: - March 16, 2022

From secrecy in hiring presidents at state universities and community colleges to knowing about key information about companies that make and supply drugs used in executions, lawmakers continued to keep Florida residents in the dark in the 2022 session. Florida’s First Amendment Foundation this week published a post-session report on what did or didn’t get […]

FL Sen. Taddeo asks for U.S. Justice department investigation over fraud in party-switches

By: - March 7, 2022

State Sen. Annette Taddeo of Miami-Dade County has sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice, asking the agency to investigate instances in Florida where registered voters’ affiliations have been switched to Republican —  without consent. While Florida has experienced little to no significant fraud going back to the 2020 elections, the party-switching has […]

Here’s more about Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, who has Miami roots

By: - February 25, 2022

If you haven’t read the Phoenix story last month about Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, please read it now: According to news outlets, President Joe Biden has tapped Jackson for the U.S. Supreme Court. If confirmed by the Senate, she’ll be the first Black woman to serve on the highest court in the land. Our Washington, […]