Steve Contorno, National Political Correspondent

Steve Contorno

National Political Correspondent

I'm the National Political Correspondent for the Tampa Bay Times. It's my job to tell you what is going on in Washington that might affect you as a Floridian. Above all else, I want to hold your government and elected representatives in Congress accountable. Maybe you'll also learn something interesting or funny from me, too. I grew up just outside Chicago, went to the University of Illinois and covered politics and government in Illinois, Wisconsin, Virginia and Washington, D.C., before joining the Tampa Bay Times as a PolitiFact writer in 2013. I may have started in a notoriously corrupt state, but I've learned grift and greed don't end at state boundaries. And neither do the good intentions of well-meaning people. Your emails and tips keep me going (as do black coffee, Chipotle and dreams of witnessing a Chicago Bears Super Bowl).

Is Florida’s marijuana industry safe under Trump’s new attorney general pick?
William Barr in his testimony was asked about marijuana, which remains illegal in the federal government’s eyes. Here’s what he said.

Is the I-4 corridor finally gaining clout again in Washington?

SCOTT KEELER   |   TimesLeft to Right: US Rep., Kathy Castor, D- Tampa, US Rep., Charlie Crist, D- St. Petersburg, Grace Nelson, wife of US Senator Bill Nelson, D- Orlando, greet US Rep. Joe Kennedy III, D- Massachusetts, at Williams Park, St. Petersburg, Tuesday, August 7, 2018. The Congressmen  were  joined by local residents and healthcare advocates to call on elected officials to protect the Affordable Care Act and Floridians' access to affordable healthcare — fighting attempts to undermine protections for those with pre-existing conditions, holding
Lawmakers from the Tampa Bay and Orlando areas will have critical new roles in the Democratic-led House of Representatives. Will they flex that power to help the region?

Rick Scott: On the shutdown, the wall, stock buybacks and offshore drilling

Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Rick Scott was sworn in as Florida's junior Senator on Tuesday. On Thursday, he spoke with the Tampa Bay Times about the latest fight in Washington and some of the issues ahead.

Rick Scott made 84 last-minute appointments. That’s not going over well with Ron DeSantis.

Rick Scott, right, attends the inauguration of his successor, Ron DeSantis on Tuesday, before he let early. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
DeSantis is apparently considering rescinding all of Scott's appointments, then re-appointing the ones he approves.

Florida reacts to Trump’s prime time speech: ‘Stop your temper tantrum,’ ‘You have to control your borders’

President Donald Trump speaks from the Oval Office of the White House as he gives a prime-time address about border security Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2018, in Washington. (Carlos Barria/Pool Photo via AP)
Democratic and Republican members of Florida's Congressional delegation quickly responded to Donald Trump's first Oval Office address. Here's what they said.