Panhandle beachgoers lose to Mike Huckabee, Ron DeSantis says pound sand
There was a lot of reaction over the Memorial Day weekend to the controversy over public beach access in Walton County. Let's just say the residents there are quite unhappy.
We received a lot of feedback after talking about the issue on our podcast - High Tops and Politics.
This is an important issue. Beach access is critical not only to Walton County but to all the coastal areas of Florida which count on beach-going tourists. And it is especially important to the economic viability of small counties such as Walton.
Meanwhile, Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Cabinet told Floridians to pound sand by going ahead with their "ceremonial" meeting in Israel.
It is an unnecessary blemish on the record of a new governor who has done rather well during his first months in office. He has won the praise of some Democrats, and the affection of many environmentalists - especially those who care about Everglades restoration.
While the faux Cabinet meeting will soon be forgotten (lord knows what precedent has been sent and it remains disturbing Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody participated), the issue confronting tiny Walton County is not like to go away any time soon.
Public beach-goers are already dealing with private security guards, signs and fences intended to keep them off the "private" beaches of the wealthy.
Here is a video showing deputies chatting with beachgoers about the issue.
(Note you may have to scroll down a bit on the tweeter feed to see the video but it worth watching).
Mother Jones has an in-depth story about how Mike Huckabee used his political clout to turn the public beach into his private beach. You can read it here.
And below is our podcast chatting about what is happening in Walton County.