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Ronald Reagan Republicans Launch Campaigns In Every Local Flagler Race, Signaling Insurgency Against GOP Incumbents

| February 18, 2014

In the glow of Ronald Reagan: Monday's meeting of the Ronald Reagan Republican Assemblies at the Palm Coast City Council introduced six of seven candidates running against local incumbents. (© FlaglerLive)

In the glow of Ronald Reagan: Monday’s meeting of the Ronald Reagan Republican Assemblies at the Palm Coast City Council introduced six of seven candidates running against local incumbents. (© FlaglerLive)

The Ronald Reagan Republican Assembly of Flagler County made a statement Monday evening: the group will contest every local political race this year, whatever its chances of winning.

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Six candidates introduced themselves Monday evening, including two for school board, two for the Palm Coast City Council, and two for the Flagler County Commission. A seventh candidate, for a school board seat, was a no-show. Not one of the candidates has won a political race before. And six of the seven are running against incumbent Republicans, suggesting that the Triple-R’s are looking to be the insurgent candidates of this election cycle—against their own party.

They have Republican incumbents nervous, because primary elections, especially on the right, are being increasingly decided by the more active, more extreme wings of the party, as recent contested, high-profile Republican primaries attest: Ron DeSantis, a tea party choice, in 2012 defeated a large field of more experienced but more moderate Republicans to win the open congressional seat that includes Flagler County. He has yet to draw Republican opposition for 2014. And Charlie Ericksen, backed by the Ronald Reagan Republicans, narrowly defeated Alan Peterson, the more moderate Republican, to take a county commission seat that year.

Monday evening the candidates were long on criticism of currently serving politicians but very short on specifics, and often factually wrong, though candidates starting out, whatever their party affiliation, often don’t have their facts as straight as they will be as the campaign wears on. Virtually every candidate who spoke Monday used familiar talking points: seeking lower taxes, controlled spending, accountability, transparency, standing up to “big government,” whether in the nation’s or the state capital.

“This is not an endorsement,” Hamby had cautioned before the introductions. The Reagan Republicans will hold an endorsement playoff in June and declare their choices at an event at the Black Cloud Saloon then. But the candidates who introduced themselves Monday at the Palm Coast Community Center were squarely in the mold of Ronald Reagan Republicans, if not themselves members of the group.

This year three Republican-held seats on the Flagler County School Board are up for election: those of Andy Dance, the current chairman of the board, John Fischer and Trevor Tucker. School board elections are ostensibly non-partisan, but that’s mostly for appearances. In reality, while no party designation appears next to candidates’ names, parties take their candidates seriously, funding them and supporting them as in any other race.

Michael McElroy, a retired cop and transplanted New Yorker with a 40-year career in law enforcement, is running against Tucker, the affable board member whose name and local family history alone account for most of his campaign strategy. Janet McDonald, a learning therapist and as active a member of the Ronald Reagan group as her more high-profile husband, Dennis McDonald, is running against Fischer, the most populist and least cerebral of the board members. Rob Worthington, the one no-show at Monday’s event, is a teacher at the St. Augustine School for the Blind. He’s running against Dance, an extreme moderate and the board’s most studied member.

“I’m running because I do care about excellence in public education,” McElroy said, speaking a line that would be used with multiple variations depending on the candidate and the race in question. McElroy said he would work hard “to prevent tax increases and particularly tax rate increases.” The overwhelming share of the local school district’s tax rate, however, is not set by the school board, but by Tallahassee lawmakers. And that rate has been on a downward trend in the past few years.

None of the candidates has ever won a race, but incumbents are nervous all the same.

McElroy was critical of the board’s attempt in June to pass a small property tax supplement to make up for lost state revenue, calling it ill-planned. And he was very critical of the Common Core standards, saying he would oppose their implementation locally, though again, the local board would have very limited authority to do so. On the other hand, the State Board of Education has already moved away from an outright implementation of Common Core, and on Tuesday was drawing up a more Florida-centered set of standards.

But it was clear from the tenor of Monday’s introductions that whatever modifications the state has and will do to accommodate some Floridians’ unease with Common Core, the Ronald Reagan group’s school board candidates were signaling that they would make Common Core a central plank of their campaigns: it’s a powerful wedge issue, and it’s no small matter that, while critics of Common Core rely again and again on more misinformation than fact, their message still resonates powerfully with many constituents.

Janet McDonald, who’s running against Fischer, described Common Core as “this black cloud that came out of nowhere” (also a mischaracterization that substitutes blind-siding for inattention, since the National Governors Association launched the Common Core initiative five years ago), but then moved on to a more precise outline of her issues as they relate to local matters. McDonald, for example, was calmly critical of the district’s much-vaunted “one-to-one initiative.” That’s the district’s plan to have a laptop or a tablet in every single one of its 13,000 students’ hands by 2017. McDonald was critical of “the real rigor in figuring out what any of these programs are going to do for our students.”

Dance has drawn at least one opponent so far outside the Roanld Reagan sphere, Maria Barbosa, who describes herself on her website as a clinical Christian counseling specialist. Fischer has drawn another opponent as well—attorney Lynette Callender, who was short-listed to be appointed to the Palm Coast City Council last year, to replace Frank Meeker (who’d been elected to the County Commission). Callender fell just short of the appointment out of a field of 17 applicants. David Ferguson was appointed to that seat.

Anne-Marie Shaffer returns. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

Anne-Marie Shaffer returns. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

In the Palm Coast City Council races, Ferguson will be facing a semi-familiar name: Anne-Marie Shaffer. Shaffer hasn’t run a race until now, but she was prominently in the news in 2012 as the campaign manager for Ray Stevens in the three-way Republican primary race for sheriff. Shaffer was then the plaintiff against John Pollinger, one of the Republican candidates, in a lawsuit that challenged Pollinger’s Republican status. A judge denied the challenge, but it was all a moot point as Don Fleming beat both Republican challengers and Jim Manfre, a Democrat, eventually beat Fleming.

Shaffer, a home-schooling parent, announced her candidacy with a big No to red-light cameras (which, she says, “produce profits” rather than increase safety), and a no to a new city hall, particularly since the city has not looked at existing buildings as alternative options. “I believe in a better Palm Coast, but not under current management,” Shaffer said. The council, however, has already given the go-ahead for a new city hall in Town Center—and did, in fact, explore existing options, including its current location and Roma Court, but chose against them because of unwieldy construction.

City Council incumbent Bill Lewis, the only Democrat in this year’s local races and the only minority on otherwise all-white local government boards, is facing Steve Nobile, a 31-year resident of Palm Coast and a local businessman—he owns HSDS Guns on Old Kings Road (which sports such armored exclamations as “Kick Brass”). Nobile’s introduction was talk-show boilerplate that had little to do with city issues (“Did you ever argue with a liberal? Doesn’t work. You just don’t do it. I mean, a wall would be better company”) other than expressing an intense dislike of city attitudes as he perceives them: “The city government for some reason thinks it’s an entity of its own, and it’s not. It’s us.” He was also critical of a city that would regulate plant heights and property colors, while also attacking the validity of red-light cameras.

“I’m not a quiet person,” Nobile warned, in words virtually cribbed from the campaign of another recent city council candidate and Ronald Reagan favorite: Bill McGuire, who won his race but has been far more measured as a council member than he was as a campaigner.

In races for the two county commission seats, first-term incumbent Nate McLaughlin is, for now, facing the most opposition, with one Republican—Mark Richter—and one Independent—Denise Calderwood—in the race. Calderwood is usually a Republican, but has chosen to go the no-party route for this race. She was in the audience Monday, but was not on the list of speakers.

Richter, an imposing figure who made fun of his own broad shoulders, among other things, was. “If you have a problem hearing my voice, turn up your hearing aid,” he said as he announced himself. The senior field engineer who’s spent years as a development manager with United Airlines and worked in a Lockheed-Martin’s surveillance and detection program in Iraq and Afghanistan has been in Palm Coast “about a year,” he says. His reason for running: “We have to put a stop to runaway spending and runaway taxes.” He said the county’s tax rate has doubled in five years, which is true, but not reflective of the tax bills that residents and businesses have been paying. Those bills have actually declined for the most part, because overall county government revenue from property taxes has declined.

“So your millage rates have doubled,” Richter said, “and for those of you whose appraised values have come down because of the recession, what’s going to happen when they go back up? They’ll double.”

Richter was repeating a common but inaccurate stories of tax liabilities in Florida—inaccurate on two counts: first, local governments are limited by law in raising appraisals to 3 percent annually. Second, local governments have, for the past six years, calibrated their tax rates roughly in line with the so-called rolled-back rate, meaning that they’ve kept their overall intake of revenue either level or below previous years’ revenue. School district revenue has declined especially. Palm Coast’s revenue has declined some. The county’s revenue has increased, but not by much. A doubling of tax bills, in other words, in nowhere in sight for residents.

Dennis McDonald in a familiar spot. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

Dennis McDonald in a familiar spot. Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

The Ronald Reagan candidate for the seat held by incumbent Republican Frank Meeker is the most visible non-elected political figure of the past two years: Dennis McDonald, a fixture at county and city meetings who narrowly lost a race against Meeker in 2012 (47 to 53 percent) and announced Monday that, even though he hadn’t yet filed, he’d try again this year.

“I spend a lot of time at this podium, but usually facing the other way around” McDonald said, a reference to his appearances before the Palm Coast City Council, which also meets at the Community Center every other week. So McDonald’s appearance before his own Reagan crowd was less introduction than update about his latest insurrections—the latest one having occurred just moments earlier, when he appeared before the County Commission to ask, with some outrage, why the actual acreage of the old hospital acquisition last year turns out to be about three quarters of an acre less than initially advertised, and to point out that cost overruns in the rehabilitation of that building into a sheriff’s headquarters are already creeping into the books, when set against last summer’s projections.

The presentations filled about an hour before Bob Hamby, the Reagan group’s leader, brought proceedings to a close. “It takes some courage and even some willpower to go through what they’re going through,” Hamby said, urging the membership to help candidates gather the required petitions to qualify for office.

The candidates, flanking a cardboard cut-out of Ronald Reagan. From left, with their race in parenthesis: Dennis McDonald (County Commission), Janet McDonald (Schoolo Board), Steve Nobile (Palm Coast City Council), Michael McElroy (School Board), Mark Richter (County Commission) and Anne-Marie Shaffer (Palm Coast City Council). Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

The candidates, flanking a cardboard cut-out of Ronald Reagan. From left, with their race in parenthesis: Dennis McDonald (County Commission), Janet McDonald (Schoolo Board), Steve Nobile (Palm Coast City Council), Michael McElroy (School Board), Mark Richter (County Commission) and Anne-Marie Shaffer (Palm Coast City Council). Click on the image for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

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57 Responses for “Ronald Reagan Republicans Launch Campaigns In Every Local Flagler Race, Signaling Insurgency Against GOP Incumbents”

  1. Genie says:

    Choices…choices are good!

  2. Ace Dead Eye Johnson says:

    I hope everyone of them win……people are done with this administration, the left wing and big government
    As the late great Ronald Reagan said “The governments first duty is to protect the people, not run there lives!
    We Need To Stop This Slow Walk Towards Socialism…..It Can’t And Will Not Ever Work……

    • Anonymous says:

      …Again, WRONG!!! Ronald Reagan TRIPLED the deficit during his two terms in office, raised taxes seven out of his eight years in office for a grand total of ELEVEN TIMES, and GREW the size of the federal government tremendously. People believe what they want to believe what they and ignore the truth, if the truth is inconvenient.

  3. Jan Reeger says:

    I currently expect I will NOT be voting for any of these candidates.

  4. Anne-Marie Shaffer says:

    “Not one of the candidates has won a political race before. “

  5. Bob S. says:

    please people this is our chance to start voting all the incumbens out. i beleive they have gone far enough with ther back door politics the last straw as far as im cobcerned was telling us taxpayers we had no say on the purchase of the old hospital or red light cameras etc etc etc.

  6. Steven Nobile says:

    WOW. Sounds like someone has already made up their mind about me. Interesting how one can listen to a 3 minute speech and complain about the lack of specifics. If you want specifics, I would be more than happy to sit down with you for a hour or so and answer any questions.

    Next, for me anyway, I’m done with politicians, having people who have not won a election before is a positive. I want people who are successful in a non-political life and are willing to represent the people, not the city government.

    I also hear the negative tone towards business, my business. I’m not sure where the Kick Brass came from, maybe a facebook post, but I would like to think I have a lot more to myself and my business then the cheap shots of a journalist. Funny, did you really not see one thing about me or my business that was positive?

    And you claim that we had the facts wrong. I did not question the validity of the red-light cameras, I questioned the process and the implementation. If it would be proven that the cameras save lives and prevent accidents, we could have implemented a better solution than taking millions of dollars out of the city and send it to Tallahassee and the camera company. Our economy is rough right now and that makes it a bad decision.

    • Pierre Tristam says:

      Mr. Nobile,

      Good to see you revealing your skin’s width from the get-go. At least we know what we’re in for. But you may want to rethink making baseless accusations. It reflects poorly on you and your candidacy, which seemed more credible before your last comment.

      I don’t know where you get the impression of a negative tone toward your business, particularly since your business got a free web link from the most-read website in the county, an outright positive nod toward your business if there could be one, and the Kick Brass reference was a not-so-subtle way to suggest that you have, or at least seemed to have, brass, which may now have to be rethought: it’s disturbing to see that you don’t know what’s on your own website. That exclamation—as you can now see from the image—was not only on your front page, but brassily broadcast from its top. If you don’t know what’s on your own website, I’m not sure how you will keep track of the city’s business. As to red lights, questioning their process and implementation absent proof of their saving lives means questioning their validity. Two days ago on this website you went as far as calling red-light cameras “one of the biggest city sell outs” you can remember. Compared to that, questioning the red light cameras’ validity is an understatement. You may correct us on a number of things, and we’ll certainly make mistakes worth correcting (as with Ms. Shaffer’s point, which was addressed). Generally speaking, our use of English tends to be OK.

      Steven, the single most important thing we do as journalists is cover local political races and issues, even though it’s generally the last thing readers want to see. We take it seriously. The one thing I don’t do—because I don’t need to: politicians do it to themselves too much to keep up with—is dabble in cheap shots, as you clearly do. What I have low tolerance for is politicians who think clichés can substitute for thoughtful policy proposals (and by definition, if you’re running for office, you’re a politician), and politicians or candidates who don’t do their homework and think that by rattling off bumper-sticker bromides they can have us fooled. That certainly works in some places. It won’t work here.

      Best of luck.

      • Steven Nobile says:

        First of all, the armored exclamations “Kick Brass” is Smith & Wesson’s who is advertising on the sight not that of HSDS Guns. But by putting that in the article, readers who trust you, will now look at us that way. That statement had no place in the article, that is not a reflection on me or my business.

        Second, the process with which decisions are made are the center of the culture of any organization. In my three minutes last night, I conceded that I could not prove either way if the cameras where helping or not, but I was sure that I could have come up with a solution which would NOT have had millions of dollars leaving the city in a time of economic downs. I’m a business man in the city and I would much prefer those dollars stay here.

        One: Does the decision benefit the people of Palm Coast?
        Two: Is the implementation plan responsible and effective for the people of Palm Coast?

        That’s all it would have taken for a city government who is for the people to decide the way they went was wrong. So why would they make that decision? Lost taxes over the last few years that’s why. They sold out Palm Coast residents, never mind the businesses we are taking money away from and the huge cost to the individual for the ticket. The city government needs revenue. That’s the sell out.

        I don’t have a thin skin. I’m just flat out frustrated with the news media and politicians who out right lie and misrepresent people, organizations and industries. I repeat myself, you’re getting all your news from a three minute speech.

      • Genie says:

        With all due respect, Flagler Live, we likely wouldn’t have a stacked deck on the council and commissioners favoring handing over millions to developers this town doesn’t have directly out of taxpayer utility funds if it were being reported fairly in all cases and on all fronts. We now find ourselves in need of replacing many of those previously elected.

        Mr. Nobile, I admire you and any other citizen in this town willing to run for public office here. And I particularly appreciate seeing a local business person in the mix. The more, the better our local government.

        Thank you.

    • Diana L says:

      You might want to get some thicker skin if you plan to be a politician.

  7. m&m says:

    Great!!! I’m glad to hear some people are doing something to change this status quo at replacing these money hungry politicians we have now…

  8. Anne-Marie Shaffer says:

    “Not one of the candidates has won a political race before.”

    Correction, FlaglerLive. I have, in fact, previously won two (2) political races. It wasn’t even that long ago. I was elected in August 2012 as the Republican State Committeewoman and as a Precinct 23 Committeewoman. In the latter race, I received the highest number of votes out of the 9 candidates. I received nearly 4100 votes for State Committeewoman…1200 more than Mayor Netts and more than any city council candidate in 2011. I received in 2012 even more votes than Jon Netts received for Mayor in 2007.

    As for the incumbent for Palm Coast City Council District 2, he was hired, not elected.

    In any case, thank you for covering the meeting last night, FlaglerLive. Looking forward to exciting year of “insurgency” ….though I don’t know how we are acting unlawfully and in “armed rebellion against a constituted authority” by participating in the political process of our Constitutional Republic by running for office on the merits of promoting adherence to the Constitution, advocating for states’ rights, championing limited government, and urging the return to government by the people. Go figure.

    Anne-Marie Shaffer for Palm Coast City Council District 2…a taxpayer just like you!

    [Note: internal party contests have little to do with political races whose outcomes affect public policy.–FL]

  9. Genie says:

    I agree with you about those red light cameras, Mr. Nobile! The current state of our local economy…..a great deal of it is going to another state. How bright is that?

    You are a breath of fresh air. Thank you and others for caring enough to run for public office. If that makes you and the others “insurgents”, what does that say about local government? Let the insurgency begin!

  10. Nancy N. says:

    I’d rather have a root canal without anesthesia than vote for a candidate with the Ronald Reagan club attached to their name in ANY way. I’m not always a fan of the current school board, as many people here are aware, but I’ll vote for them before I I vote for any one of these little Napoleans.

    • Genie says:

      @ Nancy N: Why don’t you run for office, Nancy? It’s clear you have some preconceived idea about the candidates in this article. Let’s see some more people step up to the plate.

      I’d rather go through a root canal without anesthesia than watch the Council and Commission buy another Chuimento property for millions of my tax dollars.

      I’ll support anybody who runs against that.

      • Nancy N. says:

        Nice idea Genie but I learned spending 3 years as an International Relations major that I absolutely don’t have the patience for the level of BS you have to put up with to play politics (so I switched majors). All my candidacy would accomplish would be to provide lots of colorful copy for Pierre as I failed time and again to bite my tongue. Heh. In any event, circumstances in my personal life preclude even considering taking on any additional responsibilities, let alone a public political life.

        • Genie says:

          @ Nancy: Well if you should change your mind, you’d have my support. As far as I am concerned, anybody courageous enough to step up to the plate and do this has my utmost respect and support.

      • A.S.F. says:

        @Genie says–If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. People who speak in such black and white absolutes should learn to grow a thicker skin when their heavy-handedness elicits a less than positive response. I know that I, myself, sometimes get a heated response from my rather passionate and liberal views but I realize that not everyone is going to take kindly to them. I respect that we all have differences. It seems that some people, however, take great exception to anyone who corrects them when their “facts” are found to be less than factual and their viewpoints, once translated into action, may actually have a harmful effect on others, especially those who are traditionally without a voice. One of the most common methods of intimidation that I see on this forum, in terms of response, is to “challenge” the person you feel has offended you…Saying things like, “Why don’t YOU run for office?…” These RRA candidates are putting themselves out there and should expect that they are not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. If they respond with a “hot head”, like Mr. Nobile, that tells us something about him and how he might react if he is elected into a position of authority. Nancy N. will, no doubt, vote her conscience, as will you and I and, hopefully, all the rest of us. As for the Ronald Reagan Assembly candidates–well–all I can say is, it should be an interesting campaign!

        • Genie says:

          @ASF – I wasn’t challenging, I meant it. I would support her. Nancy was expressing a passionate opinion, just like you do and I respect that. I am not offended in the least by any of her statements.

  11. Steve Wolfe says:

    Will everyone in the room take a breath please… Good grief.

    This article isn’t even a proverbial “shot across the bow” towards the candidates. It is reporting. It isn’t a paid endorsement, it’s an article. Observations of a man who makes a living by reporting. He even acknowledges that mistakes will be made, and welcomes corrections. I don’t think it serves anyone to take it personally—-yet.

    Candidates, your hearts are in the right place. I don’t think anyone questions your motives for running. Now let’s do some touch up on speeches (words mean things—believe it—live it) and keep coming out strongly.

  12. tulip says:

    This is a bad joke!! Hopefully some better candidates either from the other Republican Clubs or Democrats will decide to run as well.

  13. Robert Lewis says:

    It’s sinful that this group is yet again on their feet trying to dominate the world. I want to know what is next? Will they run write in candidates or back NPA candidates to force a closed primary?

    Ms. Shafer, you are perhaps a political opportunist who seeks a cheap head line in the paper. Your performance against Mr. Pollinger was at best disgraceful. I and I am sure everyone else would love to know who financed your law suit?

    I could careless about politics in a local race. I want to know where your community pride and spirit resides. What have you or the other candidates done to make Palm Coast or Flagler Countu a better place to live? What community involvement aside from frivolous law suits, cheap headlines and party politics have you or any of the candidates done?

  14. RAKA says:

    Where did these people come from? Reganites ae just as corrupt as the tea baggers. Where are the moderate Republicans, Democrats and Independents?

  15. Donna Heiss says:

    Oh no, no, no. Don’t expect me to be quiet as this heats up. I know too much and don’t have a dog in the race. Stay tuned for the real…………..I cannot be silenced by the “RATS”.

  16. Reaganomicon says:

    Really, the Ronald Reagan Republicans. I think Tim Kreider said it best:

    “He was a bad actor, an informer for McCarthy, and a hired front man for a gang of Texas oilmen, fundamentalist dingbats, and right-wing psychotics out of Dr. Strangelove. He put a genial face on chauvanism, callousness, and greed, and made people feel good about being bigots again. He likened Central American death squads to our founding fathers and called the Taliban “freedom fighters.” His legacy includes the dismantling of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, the final dirty win of Management over Labor, the outsourcing of America’s manufacturing base, the embezzlement of almost all the country’s wealth by 1% of its citizens, the scapegoating of the poor and black, the War on Drugs, the eviction of schizophrenics into the streets, AIDS, acid rain, Iran-Contra, and, let’s not forget, the corpses of two hundred forty United States Marines. He moved the center of political discourse in this country to somewhere in between Richard Nixon and Augusto Pinochet. He believed in astrology and Armageddon and didn’t know the difference between history and movies; his stories were lies and his jokes were scripted. He was the triumph of image over truth, paving the way for even more vapid spokesmodels like George W. Bush. He was, as everyone agrees, exactly what he appeared to be—nothing. He made me ashamed to be an American. If there was any justice in this world his Presidential Library would contain nothing but boys’ adventure books and bad cowboy movies, and the only things named after him would be shopping malls and Potter’s Fields. Let the earth where he is buried be seeded with salt.”


    And that’s who your society is named after. So I guess I’ll be voting for someone else.

  17. rickg says:

    Since the Teabaggers have a sullied name with the closing of the govt and their senseless jabbering of right wing talking points they have now rebranded as “Ronald Regan Republicans.” What a hoot… These people are nothing more than strawman candidates backed by the Koch bros and other wing nuts. Remember the good old days when these nut jobs were called John Birchers?

  18. downinthelab says:

    Time to vote them out!!!

  19. Brian says:

    That`s the idiot that started trickle down economics , problem is they only trickle down to the top 10% , he also the one that opened up our social security funds to government to start borrowing our money , no wonder I can `t get my disability now they are hoping I die first or commit suicide so they don`t have to pay me my 1130.00 a month I payed in my whole life working, and he`s also ther first one to show the rest of the Rethuglicans how profitable wars in the middle east are , he opened the door to the pure greed the Rethuglican party has now , screw the middle class and the poor , funny the only thief in jail from wall street is the one one that stole from the 10%`s , ole Bernie goers to prison for robbing them , but they rob us on a daily basis , openly taking bribes , breaking constitutional laws and nobody doers anything , we used to live by the Golden Rule of everyone follows the same laws and rules , not it`s whoever has all the Gold , makes up all the Rules, like that 17 year old rich Texas kid stole 2 cases of beer got drunk three times beyond the legal limit, killed 4 innocent pedestrians, and his parents pay off the judge and give some rehab in CA 450.000 dollars and he walks away with probation for killing 4 innocent peple , its disgusting what the rich get away with these days

  20. Flatsflyer says:

    None of these people would not make a good dog catcher. Proof is in the Pudding, anyone who claims our only President with dementia was great, surely suffers from the early stage of the same disease.

    • Brian says:

      @Flatsflyer , Exactly he was getting advise on how to run the country from psychics, palm readers and the magic 8 ball , guy said , Well , then shook his head like a bobble head doll for a few minutes to try and remember what the question was , and his crazy ass bag of bones for a wife was no better , the sad part is he didnt do an iota of the damage Bush did , why him and Cheney aren`t swinging on the end of a rope for Treason is beyond mme , they make up lies about Obama signing the most executive orders , it was Bush, like ten times more then any other President in history , he broke so many lawes its hard to keep count , Ieaq was purely a money making scheme and the next Rethuglican that gets in will do it again , Bush even said he dont care about ther soldiers that died , they knew what they signed up for , but no they signed up for Afghanistan not getting stuck doing 3 and 4 tours in Iraq, its disgusting the stuff he got away with , him and Cheney, greedy murderers

  21. snapperhead says:

    They must think we’ve forgotten their primary shenanigans from a couple years ago. I’d rather vote for an incumbent that doesn’t subvert the election process than vote for any of these clowns.

    • No kidding says:

      Snapperhead-Youre not kidding. If it wasnt for some being able to be minipulated and closing races Gail Wadsworth never would have gotten back in office for another term. Discusting!!!! Let us not forget Wadsworth is responsible for the mismanagement of more than 5 million dollars….what else is out there that we dont know about? Take a look at the Florida Auditor Generals report on line.

  22. barbie says:

    Insurgency against what? Nobody really makes that clear, with all the talking points spouted. Perhaps that was intentional? Seems like all these self-entitled Reagan-worshipers would want to leave things the way they are, rather than challenge the incumbents. The state’s been controlled by Republicans for awhile now, and there’s quite a bit of right-leaning office representation in the county here. At the very least, I do not know what “left wing policies” people are going on about here, unless they’re talking about Washington. Sure, DC is important, but there’s a reason for the adage “All politics is local.”–local pols affect you a lot more.

    The short version of all that: Be careful what you wish for.

  23. Carol Mikola says:

    Dennis McDonald sues the community, Janet McDonald pontificates to anyone who will listen and Anne-Marie Schaffer does absolutely nothing. God, what a crew!

  24. General Elector says:

    Do you want to get rid of the Red Light Cameras?
    Join us in the effort to remove them at the link below:

  25. confidential says:

    I sincerely congratulate all for running for office! We really need new elected officials.
    I like several of these candidates but I also have concerns. I agree with them that we pay local taxes and were wasted in the past in the Taj Mahals of Rte 100, also in the Airport hangars for Ginn and cakes Across our pockets, in the old hospital, the useless Plantation Utility we overpaid to Mori Hoseinni developer and this city hall that we opposed in the referendum and they shoved down our pockets in spite that they sell us that is not tax payers funded. It is!! and we will see the budget shortfall over it!
    I agree with the above candidates including the school issues.
    Now when it comes to the plan of cutting taxes I am not for cutting the services that we pay upfront in our taxes and that are provided by our government employees….we need them! I see that we pay plenty of taxes and the funds are misused to benefit the elite, specially in real estate. We do not even have enough prison beds to hold our law breakers. I am also for health care for all aka Obamacare and I am for restoring the jobs and rights of our workers including their pensions and their unemployment insurance contributed thru out their labor lives. Until we recover the jobs for the millions unemployed we will continuo in this pathetic financial depression that drive many young ones to suicide. I am against privatization of our SS, Medicare and our Postal Service. I am also for government respecting minorities, women and gays rights and finally institute comprehensive immigration in our land were we are all immigrants and also reinstate common sense gun laws for the sake at least, of our school children.
    Resuming; I like most of the above candidates views and plans at local level, but we may part ways about national issues. I have to guess/analyze how much could affect our national issues when or if you are elected. Anyway is a start and I think the McDonalds for sure, will have a good shot at it this time. Also we need a lady in the City Council.
    Lets be positive and try to work together for the betterment of all.

  26. TP says:

    I’m voting for all The REAGANITES !!!! Time to wipe this towns BUTT !!!

  27. Kendall says:

    Well given the histrionics that occurred at the meeting combined with the comments here, I’m looking forward to some Bachmann-Palin esque style crazy. It should be fun to watch this group implode.

    Wasn’t it the Reagan Republican office where the male leader was violent with a woman trying to enter? Nice people.

  28. Genie says:

    I think I just figured out why we have a town in the clutches of the developers here, why people don’t vote, and probably are not eager to run for office…

    Just look at the hate and vitrol being spewed here. This is not the country I grew up in. Who ARE you people?

    Is this what Palm Coast represents? Lord, I hope not.

    • A.S.F. says:

      Ah, the Ronald Reaganites…who would love to march us back to better time in America that never really existed except in their “Father Knows Best” imaginations. It’s interesting how some people are against any government program except the ones that benefit them personally and all government polticians except themselves, when they care to run for office. The only political figures they seem to approve of are those who claim ” the government” to be America’s worst enemy–even as they exploit it themselves for profit and power.

  29. Lin says:

    After being of a mind to kick the bums out that are in office, I look at this bunch with a cardboard cutout of Ronald Reagan — who posed that picture?

    Just listen to the candidates and what they are really saying. Read some of Flaglerlive’s past reporting. For example, June 19, 2012 Anne-Marie Shaffer’s conspiracy theories about Grand Haven and “party purity” and “blue-hairs”. How could anyone vote for her? I’m certainly not one of her “real Republicans” although that is my registration.,

    And Steven Nobile, businessman, read what this conservative said on his Facebook page — calls for lower taxes also posts re the potential for a gas station. He says what the City should do is buy up the property that would be the setting for the gas station and rezone it. Is this because he has a connection to that neighborhood or is this what he will do with our money if he is elected. He doesn’t know what these buying moves have brought Palm Coast so far? Doesn’t resemble any “conservative” fiscal policy that I know of. Just sounds like the other politicians I want to get rid of. Can’t vote for this guy.

    So who else is running for these 2 seats.

    My opinion is the jury is still out on the others.

  30. tulip says:

    To SNAPPERHEAD—Several of the candidates elected last time were Reagan people and went along with what the Rats did in closing off some races. Those incumbents won’t get my vote either next time.

  31. Janet McDonald says:

    Thanks, FlaglerLive, for your provocative spin on the meeting. It is always a challenge to engage folks to explore further than any limited print article. Yet I find your focus and word selection make me curious to find out more…and hopefully will cause others to do so, too.

    I appreciate your highlighting the importance of the community to contribute by participating in representative democracy. Election cycles are all about airing issues and engaging more citizens in discussions about how their elected officials are serving them, with information exchange and reflection on what has strengthened our community or needs additional focus. I think if we all listen closely to the candidates, whether incumbent, temporary appointment, and ‘challengers,’ we’ll understand that all are interested in making Flagler County and Palm Coast the best it can be for all who live and work here. I trust that all citizens will take advantage of all the opportunities to listen, ask questions, and co-create the governmental agencies that serve all taxpayers in Flagler County.

    Thanks for pointing out how familiar the attending group is with common core issues when you focused on my tongue in cheek ‘black cloud’ metaphor for its ‘unknown’ creation and spread. For those wanting more information, please visit for easy access to videos and summary articles on the highlights of common core, its origin, its legality, its claims, its impact on literacy standards in all areas. Pioneer Institute is committed to verifying excellence in educational reforms.

  32. JG says:

    Ronald Reagan would not recognize some of these fringe lunatics invoking his name and image. Nor would Nancy Reagan’s astrologer with whom they have more in common. Politics in Palm Coast reminds me of the Tower of Babel.

  33. NortonSmitty says:

    One thing I can unequivically say in your St. Ronnies favor, even the year or two after the Altzheimers kicked in, he was still a smarter President than George W. at his best.

  34. General Elector says:

    Do you want to get rid of the Red Light Cameras?
    Please print and sign the petition to End Palm Coasts Red Light Cameras!

    1. Follow the link below & Print it
    Please print extra copies for your friends who are registered Palm Coast voters.
    If you get 5 or more signed. We will pick them up.
    2. Fill it out
    3. Mail it to us at:
    General Elector
    226A St. Joe Plaza Drive
    PMB 107
    Palm Coast, FL 32164

    Join us in the effort to remove them at the link below:

  35. tulip says:

    I fortunately am an Independent. However, where are the Democrats that would like to run for office? If there are only Rep candidates running in a race, the R group will deliberately have one of their members become a WRITE-IN candidate, which then gives those R people the ability to close that race in order to give the candidate they support a better chance of winning, because Dems and Independents would be prohibited from voting for the candidate the R Club did not like.

    Politics is a nasty business and I don’t blame good qualified people that would like to run for office, deciding not to do so.

  36. Gail St. Pierre says:

    I have read many who say, vote out the incumbents. Period. Others think choice is good. Yes but educated yourselves about these people. They do NOT have your best interests at heart, but only their own political aggrandizement. It would be going from the frying pan into the fire to have any one of these so called Reaganites elected. Vote with your head not with your emotions. We already can see where that has gotten us. Don’t be fooled.

    • Genie says:

      @ Gail St. Pierre: Are any of these members currently in elective office? Wondering about your statement: “We can already see where that has gotten us.” I thought the story said that none had ever won elective office? What are you basing your statement on?

    • Bob s. says:

      Face it you and your tea party are done.

  37. A.S.F. says:

    @Genie says- I read Gail St. Pierre’s comment as meaning that we already know what voting with our emotions rather than our reason has gotten us in the past. As for the Ronald Reagan Assembly (or some members of it)–They may have never previously won elected office (maybe for good reason) but their dirty tricks in the Pollinger mess are still fresh in many of our memories.

  38. General Elector says:

    The Red Light Camera company is Ad Blitzing Palm coast. I think they noticed our petition. We feel so special. American Traffic Solutions ATS for short. The Red Light camera company that runs the profit engines they have installed at almost every intersection in Palm Coast with a light is now desperate to protect their flow of easy money.

    In addition to the Ads. I predict you will soon have town hall meeting where they parade groups of people in wheel chairs to convince our kind citizens to continue their profit engine under the false guise of traffic safety.

    Do you want to get rid of the Red Light Cameras?
    Join us in the effort to remove them at the link below:

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