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TheNutcracker's Journal
TheNutcracker's Journal
September 19, 2014

Army chief of staff says U.S. may need more troops in Iraq

Source: Washington Post

By Craig Whitlock September 19 at 12:55 PM

Gen. Ray Odierno, the Army chief of staff, said Friday it might be necessary to deploy more U.S. forces to Iraq beyond the 1,600 troops already there, warning that the fight against the Islamic State will intensify and could go on for years. Odierno, who served as the top U.S. military commander during the last war in Iraq, also said he would not rule out the need to send small numbers of U.S. ground troops into combat as tactical airstrike spotters or as front-line advisers embedded with Iraq forces. In a breakfast interview with the Defense Writers Group, Odierno said that “1,600 is a good start” and that “I don’t think there’s a rush, a rush to have lots of people in there now.” But he predicated that as operations accelerate against jihadist fighters from the Islamic State, military commanders will revisit U.S. troop levels. “Based on that assessment, we’ll make further decisions,” he said.

President Obama has authorized the deployment of the 1,600 U.S. troops in several stages since June, most recently on Sept. 10, when he sent an additional 475 personnel to Iraq. Most serve as advisers to Iraqi and Kurdish forces or as security for the U.S. Embassy and the international airport in Baghdad. While Obama has repeatedly insisted he will not send U.S. ground forces into combat in Iraq, he has not indicated whether he thinks more troops will be necessary in the coming months to carry out his strategy against the Islamic State. Any recommendations from military commanders to send more troops to Iraq would have to receive the endorsement of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel before going to the White House for final approval.

Asked if Hagel was open to the idea of deploying more troops, his spokesman, Rear Adm. John Kirby, said in an e-mail: “The Secretary is — and will remain — open to hearing the advice and counsel of senior military leaders. He expects that advice to be candid, forthright and forward-looking.”
Thousands of U.S. troops are stationed at bases in nearby Persian Gulf countries, from which they are carrying out a campaign of airstrikes and surveillance missions targeting the Islamic State, a group that has seized large parts of territory in Iraq and Syria.

In his interview, Odierno said the fight against the Islamic State will become more difficult as Iraqi and Kurdish forces, with the help of U.S. air power and advisers, go on the offensive and try to retake territory.

“This is going to go on,” he said. “This is not a short term — I think the president said three years. I agree with that — three years, maybe longer. And so what we want to do is do this right. Assess it properly, see how it’s going, adjust as we go along, to make sure we can sustain this.”

more at link

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/army-chief-of-staff-says-us-may-need-more-troops-in-iraq/2014/09/19/63917a0c-400e-11e4-b03f-de718edeb92f_story.html

DEJA VU ALL OVER AGAIN...and it's coming from the Army Chief

September 19, 2014

8 ways the Obama administration is blocking information

8 ways the Obama administration is blocking information

AP 09/19/2014 by Erin Madigan White

The fight for access to public information has never been harder, Associated Press Washington Bureau Chief Sally Buzbee said recently at a joint meeting of the American Society of News Editors, the Associated Press Media Editors and the Associated Press Photo Managers. The problem extends across the entire federal government and is now trickling down to state and local governments.

Here is Buzbee’s list of eight ways the Obama administration is making it hard for journalists to find information and cover the news:

1) As the United States ramps up its fight against Islamic militants, the public can’t see any of it. News organizations can’t shoot photos or video of bombers as they take off — there are no embeds. In fact, the administration won’t even say what country the S. bombers fly from.

2) The White House once fought to get cameramen, photographers and reporters into meetings the president had with foreign leaders overseas. That access has become much rarer. Think about the message that sends other nations about how the world’s leading democracy deals with the media: Keep them out and let them use handout photos.

3) Guantanamo: The big important 9/11 trial is finally coming up. But we aren’t allowed to see most court filings in real time — even of nonclassified material. So at hearings, we can’t follow what’s happening. We don’t know what prosecutors are asking for, or what defense attorneys are arguing.

4) Information about Guantanamo that was routinely released under President George W. Bush is now kept secret. The military won’t release the number of prisoners on hunger strike or the number of assaults on guards. Photo and video coverage is virtually nonexistent.

5) Day-to-day intimidation of sources is chilling. AP’s transportation reporter’s sources say that if they are caught talking to her, they will be fired. Even if they just give her facts, about safety, for example. Government press officials say their orders are to squelch anything controversial or that makes the administration look bad.

6) One of the media — and public’s — most important legal tools, the Freedom of Information Act, is under siege. Requests for information under FOIA have become slow and expensive. Many federal agencies simply don’t respond at all in a timely manner, forcing news organizations to sue each time to force action.

7) The administration uses FOIAs as a tip service to uncover what news organizations are pursuing. Requests are now routinely forwarded to political appointees. At the agency that oversees the new health care law, for example, political appointees now handle the FOIA requests.

8) The administration is trying to control the information that state and local officials can give out. The FBI has directed local police not to disclose details about surveillance technology the police departments use to sweep up cellphone data. In some cases, federal officials have formally intervened in state open records cases, arguing for secrecy.


September 18, 2014

How gender mattered in the rise and fall of Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Source: Washington Post


That's really the only way to describe Politico's piece on DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

(I hereby nominate her for Worst Week in Washington.) (Editor's note: Three words -- Joseph. Robinette. Biden.)

Based on interviews with DNC staffers -- both former and current -- the piece described Wasserman Schultz as something of a modern-day Tracy Flick: over-eager, disloyal and not shy about promoting her ambitions. It would be fair to say that she sounds like, well, a lot like other politicians. And this would be accurate. But the wholesale bashing of Wasserman Schultz at every level of the party -- White House, Congress, donors, aides in her own shop -- is especially rough, even given the reality of Beltway politics.
She comes across as a woman without a party, holding a job that could be a stepping stone, but now seems more like a trap door. (As Philip Bump notes, it might be a stepping stone no matter how it ends.) This is a public firing, Washington-style.

“We say the big ‘D’ is for Democratic,” one member joked to others at the House Democratic retreat on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in February, according to one of the members. “For her, the big ‘D’ is always for Debbie.”

Instead, the DNC chairwoman stakes out the president of the United States at the end of photo lines at events and fundraisers. “You need another picture, Debbie?” Obama tends to say, according to people who’ve been there for the encounters.

Here's the reality: No matter the outcome for Democrats in November, Wasserman Schultz will likely be shown the door, with another woman to replace her. But, the list of possible replacements is a not-so-long list of two: Stephanie Schriock, who heads the Democratic women's group EMILY's List, and Stephanie Rawlings Blake, the mayor of Baltimore.

more at link:

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2014/09/18/how-gender-mattered-in-the-rise-and-fall-of-debbie-wasserman-schultz/?wpisrc=nl-fix&wpmm=1

Florida democrats have been crying out. They were told to shut up. Yet they continue to say, how Florida goes, so goes the country. Her inside history out of Fla, is a sad history. This is the true reason activists won't act anymore. Donors won't open wallets like they used to. African Americans stay home. Research back to 2006, while she was a Florida leader.
September 18, 2014

Benghazi probe looks set to go deep in 2016 race

Associated Press |

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican chairman of a special House panel on Benghazi charted a course Wednesday for his investigation to stretch deep into a 2016 presidential election that former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton seems likely to enter.

Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina vowed to pursue the facts wherever the lead him. Opening his committee's first public hearing since its establishment four months ago, he stressed the thoroughness of the task ahead, not the need to reach immediate conclusions.

"Given the gravity of the issues at hand, I am willing to risk answering the same question twice rather than risk not answering it once," said Gowdy, a former federal prosecutor leading Congress' eighth investigation of the deadly Sept. 11, 2012, attack in eastern Libya.

Congress is still seeking documents from the Obama administration related to the attack, he said. More witnesses are being interviewed and individuals who've participated in congressional investigations will be questioned again. The special investigation was created to "find all of the facts, and I intend to do so fully," Gowdy said.
The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans were killed in Benghazi when militants stormed a U.S. diplomatic post and, hours later, fired on a CIA compound nearby. The incident became immediate political fodder given its timing in the weeks before President Barack Obama's re-election. Some Republicans argue the military held back assets that could have saved lives and that Obama and Clinton lied to the public about the nature of the attack.

Democrats deride the interest in Benghazi as a right-wing effort to keep talk of scandal fresh and harm a potential Clinton bid for the presidency. They say notions that U.S. forces were ordered to "stand down" during the attack or that Clinton played a direct role in security decisions are fantasy.

Seven previous congressional investigations failed to settle the matter.

Gowdy credited a Democrat on the 12-member panel, Rep. Adam Schiff of California, with recommending the subject of the hearing.

September 18, 2014

Decorated Iraq war veteran sues Scott over job demotion

Source: Miami Herald

Iraq war vet sues Gov. Scott over losing state job

A decorated combat veteran of three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan -- and a registered Republican -- sued Gov. Rick Scott and the state Wednesday, claiming the administration used his overseas deployment to eliminate his job in violation of state law.

The suit was filed by Walter Kreitlow, who works as an agent in the Department of Business & Professional Regulation's division of alcoholic beverages and tobacco. He earns about $50,000 a year.
DBPR declined to respond directly to the lawsuit's allegations. The agency produced documents showing that Kreitlow accepted a job demotion and a 7.5 percent pay cut in 2011 as well as a five-page letter DBPR sent to the U.S. Department of Labor in July in which the agency denied or refuted every one of Kreitlow's job-related complaints.

For example, the letter said, Kreitlow claimed he was reprimanded for putting a dry erase board in his cubicle. "This is a potential safety hazard," DBPR's response said. "Neither (Chief) Connors not (Lt.) Campbell reprimanded Mr. Kreitlow; he was merely asked to remove it ... It is requested that Mr. Kreitlow's continued mischaracterizations in his complaints be noted."

About two weeks later, on July 25, the Department of Labor told DBPR that "we are closing our file in this matter."

A long-time member of the U.S. Army reserve, Kreitlow said that he was at training in Kentucky in October 2011 when he learned that his state job had been eliminated by a law enforcement consolidation task force. His lawsuit says he was offered a vacant job in Miami or could accept a demotion in the Tallahassee district office. He claims his use of a state car was revoked and he was given a five-by-nine foot storage closet, and that his American flag that had flown over a battlefield in Iraq was removed by DBPR higher-ups.

Read more here: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2014/09/iraq-war-vet-sues-gov-scott-over-losing-state-job-.html#storylink=cpy

Read more: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2014/09/iraq-war-vet-sues-gov-scott-over-losing-state-job-.html

Does DU have a forum for EVIL? JUST PLAIN EVIL????? WE NEED ONE!

September 18, 2014

Democrats turn on Debbie Wasserman Schultz -

The party has lost confidence in her as a unifying leader and a party spokesperson. | AP Photo

By EDWARD-ISAAC DOVERE | 9/17/14 5:46 PM EDT Updated: 9/17/14 8:51 PM EDT

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz is in a behind-the-scenes struggle with the White House, congressional Democrats and Washington insiders who have lost confidence in her as both a unifying leader and reliable party spokesperson at a time when they need her most. Long-simmering doubts about her have reached a peak after two recent public flubs: criticizing the White House’s handling of the border crisis and comparing the tea party to wife beaters.

The perception of critics is that Wasserman Schultz spends more energy tending to her own political ambitions than helping Democrats win. This includes using meetings with DNC donors to solicit contributions for her own PAC and campaign committee, traveling to uncompetitive districts to court House colleagues for her potential leadership bid and having DNC-paid staff focus on her personal political agenda.

She’s become a liability to the DNC, and even to her own prospects, critics say.

“I guess the best way to describe it is, it’s not that she’s losing a duel anywhere, it’s that she seems to keep shooting herself in the foot before she even gets the gun out of the holster,” said John Morgan, a major donor in Wasserman Schultz’s home state of Florida.

The stakes are high. Wasserman Schultz is a high-profile national figure who helped raise millions of dollars and served as a Democratic messenger to female voters during a presidential election in which Obama needed to exploit the gender gap to win, but November’s already difficult midterms are looming.
One example that sources point to as particularly troubling: Wasserman Schultz repeatedly trying to get the DNC to cover the costs of her wardrobe. In 2012, Wasserman Schultz attempted to get the DNC to pay for her clothing at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, multiple sources say, but was blocked by staff in the committee’s Capitol Hill headquarters and at President Barack Obama’s reelection campaign headquarters in Chicago.
She asked again around Obama’s inauguration in 2013, pushing so hard that Obama senior adviser — and one-time Wasserman Schultz booster — Valerie Jarrett had to call her directly to get her to stop. (Jarrett said she does not recall that conversation.) One more time, according to independent sources with direct knowledge of the conversations, she tried again, asking for the DNC to buy clothing for the 2013 White House Correspondents’ Dinner.

Wasserman Schultz denies that she ever tried to get the DNC to pick up her clothing tab. “I think that would be a totally inappropriate use of DNC funds,” she said in a statement. “I never asked someone to do that for me, I would hope that no one would seek that on my behalf, and I’m not aware that anyone did.”

Tracie Pough, Wasserman Schultz’s chief of staff at the DNC and her congressional office, was also involved in making inquiries about buying the clothing, according to sources. Pough denies making, directing or being aware of any inquiries. But sources with knowledge of the discussions say Wasserman Schultz’s efforts couldn’t have been clearer. “She felt firmly that it should happen,” said a then-DNC staffer of the clothing request. “Even after it was explained that it couldn’t, she remained indignant.”

This story is based on interviews with three dozen current and former DNC staffers, committee officers, elected officials, state party leaders and top Democratic operatives in Washington and across the country. Many expect a nascent Clinton campaign will engineer her ouster. Hurt feelings go back to spring 2008, when while serving as a co-chair of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, Wasserman Schultz secretly reached out to the Obama campaign to pledge her support once the primary was over, sources say.

Meanwhile, the Obama team was so serious about replacing her after 2012 that they found a replacement candidate to back before deciding against it, according to people familiar with those discussions.

Obama and Wasserman Schultz have rarely even talked since 2011. They don’t meet about strategy or messaging. They don’t talk much on the phone. Instead, the DNC chairwoman stakes out the president of the United States at the end of photo lines at events and fundraisers. “You need another picture, Debbie?” Obama tends to say, according to people who’ve been there for the encounters.


much more at link above...

This is on the heels of true shenanigans for years in Florida, by Shutlz

September 17, 2014

Ed Hooper gets called out for 'pay to play' in Pinellas County commission race!


Another week, another testy exchange between Pinellas Commission candidates Pat Gerard and Ed Hooper

16 September

Pinellas County Commission candidate Pat Gerard has called on her opponent, Ed Hooper, to give back the money his consulting firm was paid by the Clearwater Aquarium while he served in the Legislature.

Gerard, a Democrat running for the District 2 seat currently held by Norm Roche, accused Hooper last week of being untruthful when he said that none of the clients of the Consus Group benefited from his work as a lawmaker. She noted the company was paid several thousand dollars in 2011 to represent the aquarium as it sought a development permit from the city for an expansion project. Hooper's partner, Joe Burdette, was listed in city filings as one of the aquarium's "agents."

Hooper, a Clearwater Republican who beat Roche in last month's primary, later sponsored a bill making aquariums eligible for local tourist tax revenue. Hooper also helped land $5 million for the Dolphin Tale sequel, with $1 million going to the aquarium for other uses if the movie never got made. Dolphin Tale 2 premiered last week.

Hooper said he didn't work on the aquarium project but acknowledged he received half of the total fee that he estimated to be $9,000 to $10,000

On Tuesday, in an open letter to Hooper, Gerard said he should return the money. She also repeated her call for him to release the Consus Group's client list.

"At worst, this is evidence of a pay-to-play scheme and corruption at high levels of state government," wrote Gerard, who currently serves as Largo's mayor. "At best, your fees from The Consus Group create a perceived conflict of interest that violates the public trust. The voters of Pinellas County deserve to know their local representatives have only their interests in mind when proposing legislation."

Hooper on Tuesday refused to give back the money or release his client list. He reiterated what he said last week: His work for the aquarium and in Tallahassee are "not even remotely related."
He said the aquarium bill benefited about two dozen other aquariums in Florida, and that the money secure for the movie and the aquarium was meant to boost tourism in his home district

"It's a false controversy," he said.

False or not, the subject is likely to come up again when the Gerard and Hooper appear together Thursday at the Suncoast Tger Bay Club's monthly luncheon.

[Last modified: Tuesday, September 16, 2014 5:27pm]

Hooper used to be a firefighter and a democrat on the Clearwater City Commission. He switched to a republican in 2002, because Jeb Bush told him if he wanted to see his firefighter bill go anywhere, he better support him! So he did! Then Hooper remained a repug, and is now termed out. How many pensions do you need, and how many teets can one guy find to suck?


September 16, 2014

Satanists want to give out materials in Orange schools

Source: Orlando Sentinel

September 15, 2014, 4:49 PM

A religious group called The Satanic Temple is making plans to hand out literature in Orange County Public Schools later this school year, following distributions by atheist and evangelical Christian groups. The New York-based Satanist group hopes to use a distribution as a form of protest.
Atheist group lawsuit against Orange schools dismissed; group can distribute materials in high schools.

"If a public school board is going to allow religious pamphlets and full Bibles to be distributed to students, as is the case in Orange County, Florida, we think the responsible thing to do is to ensure that these students are given access to a variety of differing religious opinions," said temple co-founder and spokesman Lucien Greaves. The district has not received a formal request from the temple, but school officials say they reserve the right to review materials.

However, Orange has twice allowed a group called World Changers of Florida to distribute Bibles, and an atheist group gave out materials last year. In both cases, district counsel Woody Rodriguez said the pamphlets and books were being allowed to avoid a lawsuit.

The Satanic Temple, a relatively new group that supports social justice causes and believes Satan is the "eternal rebel against the ultimate tyrant," wants to give out materials such as The Satanic Children's Big Book of Activities. Greaves said the book contains information for students on protecting themselves from corporal punishment at school.

"They have no ability to keep out the Satanists and the literature they want to distribute unless they close the forum altogether," said FFRF attorney Andrew Seidel.

more at link....

Read more: http://www.orlandosentinel.com/features/education/os-satanic-temple-orange-schools-20140915-story.html

See what happens when you allow religion in any form into the public schools???????

September 16, 2014

Satanists Plan Rally in Support of Florida Gov. Rick Scott

Source: ABC News

The Satanic Temple is planning its first major rally, which will be held in support of Florida Gov. Rick Scott later this month for -- which might sound ironic -- signing a bill that allows for the possibility of prayer in public schools.

The religion's founder Neil Bricke, who is based in New York, is expected to speak at the rally. Bricke uses an assumed name for Satanic-related business and would not reveal his real name to ABC News. The group also hopes to open a temple in New York in the next few months. It may be telling that the Satanic temple will be located in New York and the group's first rally, scheduled for Jan. 25, will be held in Florida.

"New York is a pretty good place for Satanism. Florida is too," said Satanic Temple spokesman Lucien Greaves.

The Florida bill that has delighted the Satanists is Senate Bill 98 and gives students "sole discretion in determining whether an inspirational message is to be delivered" at a student assembly. The bill prohibits school officials from participating in or influencing whether an inspirational message will be delivered.

Satanists feel that the policy "does a lot to support religious diversity," according to Greaves.
"The Satanic Temple embraces the free expression of religion, and Satanists are happy to show their support of Rick Scott who -- particularly with SB 98 -- has reaffirmed our American freedom to practice our faith openly, allowing our Satanic children the freedom to pray in school," the Temple said in a release announcing the rally.

"This is a great country. Everyone has a voice," Gov. Scott's press secretary wrote in an email to ABCNews.com when asked about the rally.

Read more: http://abcnews.go.com/US/satanists-plan-rally-support-florida-gov-rick-scott/story?id=18219915

Whoa.....see what happens republicans when you allow the Christian right and Bibles into the public schools?????? Did you not know, that Col. Michael Aquino got Satanism recognized as a religion in the U.S for our military????????? The press secretary is correct. Now, watch the Christian fundies be allowed to fight back with vigor, in the public schools. Gads......
September 16, 2014

Thrasher gets testy at his FSU interview


Update: Thrasher endures testy forum at FSU

Well-connected state Sen. John Thrasher, one of four finalists to be Florida State University's next president, will have a day-long series of forums today with the campus community.

Update: 4:31 p.m.
John Thrasher is tough to rattle.
A powerful state senator, Thrasher is eager to be Florida State University's next president even though he's the only non-academic among the four finalists. He endured two testy forums Monday afternoon with FSU faculty and students, and appeared no worse for wear.

Pressed on a range of issues, from his opinions on climate change and evolution to past votes in the Legislature, Thrasher reiterated his love for his alma mater and what he would focus on during his first 100 days on the job: the $1 billion capital campaign and improving salaries for professors.

"We love Florida State; we care about it," Thrasher told an audience of about 200 in the Turnbull Center conference room. "I know that's not a reason to be the president of the university, but I think it's important to care. I think we've gotten to a point where we have a number of people who would make a good president at Florida State."

Thrasher has been a lightning rod for criticism almost since FSU President Eric Barron accepted the same position at Penn State University on Feb. 17. Some faculty support him, but many others have objected to his presence when the job description clearly states that the university wants its next leader to have a background in academia – which Thrasher does not.

FSU's Faculty Senate last week approved a resolution calling for the Board of Trustees to select an academician, and a similar-sounding petition started Sunday morning by the faculty union had collected close to 1,000 signatures by Monday evening.

One member of the audience, identified only as Amanda, asked Thrasher why he was the only candidate to have inspired protests. She said her question was addressing the "elephant in the room."

"I hope it hasn't impacted people on campus in a negative way. I hope students are still studying. I hope professors are still teaching, I hope researchers are still doing their research," Thrasher said. "I'm a human being. There are certain things that have been said that I would like to not have been said. It goes with the territory."
Monday's forums, which concluded with a reception, were the first of four this week. Michele Wheatly, a former provost at West Virginia University, will follow a similar schedule Tuesday. Colorado State University Chancellor Michael Martin is on campus Wednesday, with University of Alabama-Birmingham vice president Richard Marchase here Friday.

The search committee meets next Monday to decide if any of the four do not deserve to be forwarded to the Board of Trustees, which will meet Sept. 23 to pick FSU's next president.
Florida Senator John Thrasher meets with FSU faculty in a Monday afternoon forum. He is the first of the final four candidates for president to go through the on campus meetings.

Jennifer Proffitt asks Florida Senator John Thrasher a question as he meets with FSU faculty in a Monday afternoon forum. He is the first of the final four candidates for president to go through the on campus meetings.

Former FSU President Sandy D'Alemberte, the first to nominate Thrasher despite their political differences, was on hand Monday to support the legislator who chaired the trustees during D'Alemberte's final two years as president.
College of Communication professor Andy Opel pressed Thrasher on climate change, asking him if believed it is real. "Do you accept the science behind it," Opel said.

Like Gov. Rick Scott, whose reelection campaign Thrasher co-chairs, Thrasher declined to give a specific response. At that point, two students in the front row appeared to Thrasher to be laughing at his answer.
He threatened to leave, saying he "would not be heckled."

"I just wanted to get their attention," Thrasher said after the faculty forum. "It wasn't that bad a deal. I respect them and they ought to give me the same respect."
The next person to pose a question, law professor Mark Seidenfeld, asked Thrasher if he believed in evolution.

"I have a great faith in my life that has guided me in my life in a lot of things I believe in," Thrasher said.
Some of the encounters elicited laughter from both Thrasher and many in the audience. Oceanographer Jeff Chanton began by telling Thrasher that the adjective "powerful" appears before his name so often in stories that he sometimes wonders if it's Thrasher's first name.

"I almost feel like people are afraid to not make you president," Chanton said. "What would happen to us if we don't select you president?"
Thrasher assured Chanton that FSU will be just fine no matter who the trustees choose next week.

"Nothing bad's going to happen to Florida Satte," Thrasher said. "I think more good can happen to Florida State if I become president."

Update: 2:19 p.m.
Influential state Sen. John Thrasher, one of four finalists to be Florida State's next president, was met with testy crowds during a forum with faculty today.
A group of graduate assistants heckled Thrasher from the front row of a meeting with faculty at the Turnbull Center.

"Thrasher interview with FSU faculty turning combative. VERY COMBATIVE," tweeted Tampa Bay Times reporter Tia Mitchell. "He just threatened to walk out."
Thrasher was asked about his positions on climate change and evolution. Regarding evolution, Thrasher told faculty he has a "great faith" that guides him, according to Mitchell.
Thrasher is the first of the finalists to go before staff, faculty and students in separate forums today, followed by a reception. All events take place at the Turnbull Center.
Thrasher told the crowd his priorities during his first 100 days as president would be the university's capital campaign, faculty salaries, graduate assistant issues and a listening tour.

Original Story:
Well-connected state Sen. John Thrasher, one of four finalists to be Florida State University's next president, will have a day-long series of forums today with the campus community.
Thrasher is the first of the finalists to go before staff, faculty and students in separate forums, followed by a reception. All events take place at the Turnbull Center.

FSU is moving quickly toward hiring a president. The FSU Board of Trustees has scheduled a Sept. 23 meeting to decide on which of the four finalists will be FSU's next CEO.
Thrasher, a Republican from St. Augustine who chairs Florida Gov. Rick Scott's reelection campaign, is the only non-academic among the finalists. Faculty and students on the search committee have been united in their opposition to advancing him this far. Michele Wheatly, a former provost at West Virgnia University, Michael Martin, chancellor of the Colorado State University System, and Richard Marchase, a vice president for research at the University of Alabama-Birmingham will be on campus Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, respectively.

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