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The Phil Lewis Way

Post # 35, Bob McKnight's Subscription Commentary

After a bruising campaign for President, Phil Lewis offered his opponent the most important position in the Senate. Voluntarily.

To his credit, new Florida Senate President Bill Galvano (R., Bradenton) said the priorities for his Administration were civility, transparency, candor and opportunity. Those are noble words. But they are still, well just words. Many have preceded the President with similar altruistic goals, only to be abandoned soon after gaveling the Senate into Session.

My service in the Senate started 40 years ago with a Senate President named Phil Lewis (D., West Palm Beach). Like Galvano, Lewis took over the Senate after a difficult campaign in the state. Lewis was less grandiose in his maiden speech to the 40 member Senate than Galvano. But, President Lewis did one thing that Galvano would be wise to duplicate. His actions comported to his rhetoric.

The opponent of Senator Lewis for the Presidency was one of the Chamber's smartest and most capable members, Jack Gordon (D., Miami Beach). To no one's surprise, the first and most important appointment Lewis announced was Senator Gordon--as the powerful Chairman of The Ways and Means Committee (Appropriations). What if Galvano appointed a Democrat the Chairman of the Ways and Mean Committee? It would be shocking. But should it be? No.

This is the President's opportunity to show that his actions comport with his rhetoric. Like the respected President Phil Lewis did....40 years ago.

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