Congress' historic — some would say ill-advised — action in the Terri Schiavo case this week symbolizes one of the most important but least appreciated new political trends of the last decade — the emergence of Florida as a national harbinger of political trends and issues.
Indeed, there was a time that if you wanted to get a peak at the political future, you only needed to take a look at California. From community college roll-outs and tax cut rebellions to immigration battles and environmental plans, the Golden State often established important political and policy trends that rippled across the nation.
But over the last 10 years, Florida has finally taken its place alongside California as one of the leading predictors of the political future. No longer a sleepy Southern state, retiree haven or rising Sunbelt state, Florida is now a certified, cutting edge trendsetter when it comes to national policy.
Be afraid. Be very afraid.