What’s at stake in tonight’s Florida attorney general debate between Moody and Shaw

Tampa Bay Times by William March

October 23, 2018

The most important overlooked race in Florida – one that could alter the state’s relationship with President Donald Trump and affect the Trump agenda – will see its only televised debate tonight.

It’s the attorney general’s race, for an office sometimes considered the second most powerful elected post in Florida. With Republican incumbent Pam Bondi term-limited, Democrat Sean Shaw faces Republican Ashley Moody for the post.

Bondi has been an ardent backer of Trump, and Moody promises to follow to a large degree in her footsteps.

Shaw, on the other hand, has called Trump unfit for office, and likely would use his power to attack Trump and his agenda.

Throughout the nation, Democratic attorneys general have used their power to sue to try to alter that agenda, while Republicans, including Bondi, have sought to advance it and to attack Obama-era environmental and other policies.

Shaw has promised that if elected, he’ll join a lawsuit by Democratic attorneys general in Maryland and the District of Columbia seeking to uncover whether Trump has illegally received “foreign emoluments,” payments from foreign powers banned in the Constitution, through his businesses. One of their goals is to force Trump to produce his tax returns.

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