PerspectivesA.G. Gancarski Jacksonville Today Contributor

A.G. Gancarski's columns were a staple in Folio Weekly for nearly two decades, and he has been the Northeast Florida correspondent for Florida Politics since 2014. He writes about the intersection of state and local politics and policy.

Featured image for “OPINION | Bring Byron home”
January 30, 2022

OPINION | Bring Byron home

It’s hard for me to understand, as a longtime observer of the Jacksonville Jaguars franchise, why it’s taken the team so long to sign former quarterback Byron Leftwich as head coach. I get that the Trent Baalke situation as general manager may be one that Shad and Tony Khan don’t want to let go of, though I can’t understand why.

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Featured image for “OPINION | Corrine’s revenge? Ron DeSantis goes after Al Lawson”
January 23, 2022

OPINION | Corrine’s revenge? Ron DeSantis goes after Al Lawson

Is Gov. DeSantis trying to do what Jacksonville Democrats could not, in removing Al Lawson from Congress? That is one interpretation of the Year Zero-style Congressional redistricting map from the governor’s general counsel, a document that was dropped the night before MLK Day. The map lays waste to the concept of protected minority access districts, creating a map that puts

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Featured image for “OPINION | Ben Frazier makes his point”
January 9, 2022

OPINION | Ben Frazier makes his point

A week ago, the world hadn’t heard of Ben Frazier. The president of the Northside Coalition was known locally, but it took a trip to the Florida Department of Health building in Jacksonville for Frazier to become celebrated from coast to coast. Frazier, a one-time broadcast journalist who still has the voice for the gig, was unrelenting when advised that

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Featured image for “OPINION | Ron DeSantis doesn’t owe you an explanation”
January 2, 2022

OPINION | Ron DeSantis doesn’t owe you an explanation

Where was the governor at the end of 2021? Ron DeSantis stopped doing press events for the most part.  His Twitter account aroused suspicion at year’s end, by recycling an appreciation from a couple weeks before for a bagel shop in Ocala.  He did a pre-taped segment for Christmas Day on Fox News, but it was the same old, same

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Featured image for “OPINION | GOP 2023 race: Death, taxes, and Lenny Curry”
December 17, 2021

OPINION | GOP 2023 race: Death, taxes, and Lenny Curry

What to make of last week’s 13-5 Jacksonville City Council repudiation of LeAnna Cumber’s attempt to turn back the gas tax hike going into effect next month? Ultimately, Tuesday night saw two Republican candidates come after the sitting mayor and his policy priority, and by proxy the man widely seen as the candidate of the Jacksonville business establishment, Daniel Davis. 

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Featured image for “OPINION | Polson’s problem”
December 12, 2021

OPINION | Polson’s problem

The First Election of the Jacksonville City Council At Large Group 3 race is in the books, and nobody won. That’s the reality of the open primary that we saw last Tuesday, in which Democrat Tracye Polson was the leading vote getter, with Republican Nick Howland running behind by less than half a percentage point. There were some who thought

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Featured image for “OPINION | Carlucci bails out”
December 5, 2021

OPINION | Carlucci bails out

Jacksonville City Councilman Matt Carlucci surprised some people last week when he abandoned his bid for Jacksonville Mayor. Carlucci launched his campaign at the beginning of 2021, with strong fundraising and seeming momentum. But the optimism of spring and summer gave way to the harsher reality of fall and a cold, cold winter ahead. Early in his term, Carlucci said

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November 28, 2021

OPINION | Primary battles to watch in 2022

We will have a few live August contests in this region next summer. While top-of-the-ticket stuff leaves some intrigue for the November general election, the down-ballot stuff is often of greatest interest in these primaries. For those who need it, here’s a cheat sheet breaking down the partisan dynamics in play and the potential outcomes.  The biggest-stakes competitive primary is

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Featured image for “OPINION | Ron DeSantis doesn’t get Duval. Does he care?”
November 21, 2021

OPINION | Ron DeSantis doesn’t get Duval. Does he care?

In 2018, Gov. Ron DeSantis didn’t win Duval County in the general election race against Andrew Gillum. It was a bad year for a few statewide GOP candidates in Duval, including another who won the state but lost the county: Rick Scott also failed to carry the county against Bill Nelson. And local Republican Party leadership at the time took

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Featured image for “OPINION | Can Donna Deegan win?”
November 14, 2021

OPINION | Can Donna Deegan win?

Fundraising isn’t everything. That is what every underfinanced candidate has said since the beginning of time. And that is also the message of Donna Deegan, the first Democrat to run for Jacksonville Mayor in close to a decade. Deegan launched her campaign the day before the fundraising filing deadline for October, which was Tuesday, and before filing new numbers.  A

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