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Tom Lee: Dorworth should not be anointed so soon

In an address Wednesday to the League of Women Voters, former Senate President Tom Lee criticized the quick anointment of Chris Dorworth as House speaker in 2014.

"These folks need to get to know each other, they need to get a grasp of the issues," Lee said in an address run by WUSF in Tampa. "They need to start making these decisions on their own, rather than having the lobbyists decide based upon who they're going to finance and support with leadership money. And I just think that we'd be a lot better off if there could be some restraint in the rules of both chambers to preclude this kind of thing from happening four or five years out."

The Republican from Brandon was president of the Senate in 2005 and 2006. He lamented an increase in partisanship in the Legislature. He also said he hopes Sen. John Thrasher can clean things up as the new chairman at the Florida GOP.

"The party is really at an all-time low," he said. "It's damaged our governor, it's hurt the confidence that a lot of Republicans have in that apparatus. He's got his work cut out for him trying to restore the confidence of Republicans in the state."

(Listed to the full 30-minute address here)