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Happytown toasts and roasts 2013

Looking back at the best and worst newsy moments of the year

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Speaking of assholes, we have a special toast for our hatefuck frat-boyfriend, House Speaker Will Weatherford, who, in addition to dude-bro-ing Medicaid expansion out of bowl contention – even though he admitted that his family survived on the program at its darkest hour – went apeshit on the state’s pension program, calling it insolvent as he tried to force enemy public servants into 401(k) plans (even after an economic study proved him wrong). You don’t need facts with a smile like that, William. Drink!

A drink in the smirking face likewise goes to Sen. Marco Rubio for too many reasons to really mention here: the immigration flip-flop, the rampant gay-hating and base-baiting, the federal budget grandstanding and the Obamacare subsidy-mooching. Nobody cares what you think of President Obama shaking Raul Castro’s hand at Mandela’s funeral when you can’t even make up your own mind who you want people to think you are. This shot’s for you.

A genuine raise of the finest stemware goes to moneybags Mayor Buddy Dyer, who, without batting an eye, managed to convince county leaders – and not even just Orange County leaders – to pitch in to make his $84 million soccer stadium deal a paid-for reality. In the end, the Orlando City Soccer Club got its Major League Soccer franchise distinction (Ruckus!) and the poor old Citrus Bowl and performing arts center projects got to piggyback on the funding success, whether they deserved to or not. Well played, sir.

Less well played was the poor, sad fate of Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, who, despite every behind-the-scenes string pulled – and despite State Attorney Jeff Ashton’s impish wrist-slapping – still came up smelling guilty for last year’s textgate fiasco. Good to know that your entire board of county commissioners was selling your interests to moneyed lobbyists, though, while simultaneously learning that cell phones are forever. Let the lobbyists buy this round.

Oh, shit. We are getting drunk!

Anyway, we’ll throw half a shot in shapeshifting-tanning-bed-of-smiles-and-handshakes Charlie Crist’s general direction. Even by Gov. Scott’s internal polling, Crist currently leads in the 2014 gubernatorial stakes to reclaim his hot seat, this time as a halo-headed Democrat. And even though he’s been characteristically elusive with the political specifics beyond being the “people’s governor” of platitudes – seriously, we chased him down for a week and only managed a selfie and a Springsteen song – he’s doing a good job pissing off his former party, and that’s always good.

You know who really gets the big glass of flavored vodka splashed with champagne this year, though, is the gays! For the first time in forever, Equality Florida and other gay rights supporters – including yours truly – managed to get a domestic partnership registry bill through an actual Florida senate committee. All of this came against the backdrop of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional while rolling back California’s gay marriage ban. Girl, we are swimming in this shot. Bring it, 2014!

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