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Adam C. Smith, Times Political Editor

Adam C. Smith

The Washington Post calls Political Editor Adam Smith a top political writer in Florida, and the Columbia Journalism Review has called him one of the top 10 political writers in America. He focuses on state and national politics, and is the creator of the award-winning Florida politics blog, The Buzz. Smith has been with the Times since 1992 and has covered local and state government, as well as general assignment and investigative beats. Smith grew up in New York City, graduated Kenyon College in Ohio, and when he's not chasing politicians, he tries to keep up with his wife, three kids and hound dog.

Phone: (727) 893-8241


Blog: The Buzz

Twitter: @AdamSmithTimes

  1. For a Better Florida: Florida Insider Poll predicts Richard Corcoran to dominate state politics for next two months

    State Roundup

    In any normal year, the governor is most important elected official in Florida.

    This is no normal year.

    As we head into another legislative session, Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran looms over virtually other public official in the state.

    In a Florida Insider Poll of nearly 180 of the state's most experienced and plugged-in political players, a whopping 71 percent predicted the 51-year-old Land O'Lakes Republican would dominate the session, while only 12 percent touted Gov. Rick Scott and 9 percent Florida Senate President Joe Negron of Stuart....

    Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes, is expected to dominate the 2017 legislative session, according to a new Florida Insider Poll. [Scott Keeler | Tampa Bay Times]
  2. Carole Crist: I will always love Charlie


    Former Florida First Lady Carole Crist sent us a statement this morning about U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, D-St. Petersburg, filing for divorce Friday. She and the former governor were married for more than eight years.

    While I am deeply saddened with how things turned out, Charlie seems happy and I love him for that. I am so grateful for our time together in the last ten years and I will always love Charlie and wish him the very best in the future!...

    Carole Crist
  3. Winner and loser of the week in Florida politics


    Winner of the week
    Gus Bilirakis. For many U.S. House members, the prospect of holding one chaotic town hall meeting loaded by people worried and/or angry about the Donald Trump/GOP health care agenda sounds like one too many. Bilirakis, the low key Republican everyman representing Pasco and parts of Hillsborough and Pinellas counties, presided over three, listening carefully, respectfully, and earnestly throughout....

  4. After town halls, Rep. Bilirakis says much of Obamacare still needs to go

    State Roundup

    U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis spent about seven hours this month in town hall meetings loaded with poignant and passionate stories from his constituents about their health care struggles. The overwhelming sentiment expressed was that the Affordable Care Act badly needs improvement, but it has been a godsend to many of his constituents who pleaded with him not to repeal it altogether.

    "These are real stories. People are really worried. They're genuinely concerned," Bilirakis, 54, told The Buzz after his final listening session at Wesley Chapel High School last week....

    U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis listens to Pat Seeley’s concerns during one of his three health care meetings with constituents.
  5. Rep. Charlie Crist is divorcing his wife, Carole (w/video)

    State Roundup

    ST. PETERSBURG — After more than eight years of marriage, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist has filed for divorce.

    "I think the world of Carole. She's an amazing person. It just didn't work out for us," the former Florida governor told the Tampa Bay Times. "I wish all the best for her."

    Crist, 60, said the divorce should have no impact on his service.

    He and Carole, 47, own a Parkshore condo in downtown St. Petersburg, and details about whether he will continue to live there have yet to be worked out....

    Carole Crist stands by as Charlie Crist speaks to his victory party at the Loews Don Cesar Hotel on St. Pete Beach after being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives on Nov. 8. [SCOTT KEELER | Times]
  6. Rep. Charlie Crist divorcing his wife, Carole


    After more than eight years of marriage, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist has filed for divorce.

    "I think the world of Carole. She's an amazing person. It just didn't work out for us," the former governor told the Tampa Bay Times. "I wish all the the best for her." 

    Crist, 60, said the divorce should have no impact on his service.

    He and Carole, 47, own a Parkshore condo in downtown St. Petersburg, and details about whether he will continue to live there have yet to be worked out....

    Carole and Charlie Crist
  7. Charlie Crist invites 8th grader and advocate for Syrian refugees to attend Donald Trump speech


    A St. Petersburg eighth grader trying to help Syrian refugees will be the guest of U.S. Rep.Charlie Crist at Tuesday's address to Congress by President Donald Trump, who is barring Syrian refugees from America.

    Crist, D-St. Petersburg, said he invited Oliver Hess of Shorecrest Prepatory School after reading a letter from Hess about his efforts to help a Syrian refugee family fleeing persecution resettle in Florida as part of his school’s annual “passion project.”...

  8. And they're off: Dem race for governor is underway


    Politico speculated the other day that Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum could announce for governor Friday at an appearance in Orlando for the Central Florida Urban League's Cornerstone Awards. Seems unlikely that a mayor would announce formally for office outside his own city, but it's a safe bet that both Gillum and Miami Beach Beach Mayor Philip Levine will sound very much like gubernatorial candidates when they address the gathering tomorrow....

  9. Don't take away our health care, Obamacare defenders urge Gus Bilirakis at his third town hall


    A lot of U.S. House members and Senators are avoiding town hall-style meetings in their districts rather than risk being attacked before TV cameras. U.S. Rep. Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor, drew national attention early this month when dozens of people turned out for his town hall meeting in northern Pinellas County to rip the GOP's plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Then Bilirakis held another town hall meeting in Hillsborough County that also turned fiery. And tonight in Pasco County, Bilirakis held a third town hall meeting....

  10. Poll: Sorry Marco, the GOP super stars of Fla are Rick Scott and Donald Trump


    A newly released poll of Republican primary voters in Florida provides a healthy reminder to politicos inside the Tallahassee bubble that perceptions in the real world are very different from those in and around the Capitol. And to the legislative leaders mulling a run for governor, the Associated Industries of Florida poll should be humbling: You're a nobody outside Tally. 

    What's it show? That among Republican primary voters, Rick Scott and Donald Trump are rock stars, with 81 percent of Republicans approving of both the president's and the governor's  job performance....

    Scott and Trump took a selfie at Trump Tower in November
  11. Tampa Bay Democrats follow tea party playbook to take on Trump era


    From Tony Marrero:

    The married couple stood on the sidewalk in front of the gleaming high rise, clutching pink posters as traffic zoomed by on West Kennedy Boulevard.

    It was Valentine's Day, and Andrea Beley and Gaston Naranjo of Tampa had joined about 150 other demonstrators to send a message to U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio. This day, the group was largely focused on getting Rubio to hold a town hall meeting....

    Sandra Duenas joined about 150 protesters from a variety of local groups for a demonstration Tuesday in front of the Tampa district office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio on West Kennedy Blvd. Groups challenging President Trump have coalesced, locally and nationwide, through a how-to manual titled "The Indivisible Guide.
  12. Winner and loser of the week in Florida politics


    Winner of the week

    Andrew Gillum. The little-known 37-year-old mayor of Tallahassee may seem like a longshot for governor, but as the crowd of white Democrats looking at running grows (Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham, Orlando businessman Chris King, Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine, lawyer John Morgan of Orlando, among them) the odds of anAfrican-American candidate winning the primary where 30 percent of the voters are black seems not so bleak....

  13. Insiders predict Scott's pick for CFO successor

    State Roundup

    Whom will Gov. Rick Scott appoint as chief financial officer to succeed Jeff Atwater as he steps down for a job at Florida Atlantic University? We turned to our trusty Florida Insiders for their predictions and the more than 170 politicos were all over the map.

    Results of the unscientific Florida Insider Poll (rounded to nearest whole number): Lakewood Ranch developer and former legislator Pat Neal, 22 percent; Lt. Gov. Carlos López-Cantera, 15 percent; former state Rep. Tom Grady of Naples, 15 percent; state Rep. Joe Gruters of Sarasota, 12 percent; state Sen. Tom Lee of Brandon, 11 percent; Other, 8 percent; Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry, 7 percent; state Sen. Jack Latvala of Clearwater, 6 percent; former Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford of Wesley Chapel, 4 percent; state Sen. Jeff Brandes of St. Petersburg, 1 percent; Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, 1 percent....

    Tallahassee, Florida, Mayor Andrew Gillum speaks during day Three of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, July 27, 2016. / AFP / SAUL LOEB        (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
  14. A billionaire for Florida governor?


    Add another potentially game-changing name to the prospective Democratic candidates for governor in 2018. Billionaire Palm Beach resident and former U.S. Senate candidate Jeff Greene.

    "I've been approached by a lot of people, and I've had conversations with people that have approached me," said Greene, who lost the 2010 Democratic primary for U.S. Senate to Kendrick Meek after spending about $23 million of his own money....

    Jeff Greene
  15. Will Bob Buckhorn run for governor? Doubts growing


    Which of the following Democrats does not appear poised to run for Florida governor?

    A) Former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham of Tallahassee, who addressed Polk County Democratic activists Saturday, is paying for online ads about her potential run for governor, and Wednesday blasted Gov. Rick Scott on Twitter over his administration losing a lawsuit about water use.

    B) Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, who on Wednesday held a series of meetings with Democratic activists in Jacksonville, hailed Jacksonville's new human rights ordinance on Twitter and on Monday had lunch with the head of the influential SEIU union....