TALLAHASSEE – While the race for the White House dominates Florida politics, a half-dozen proposed constitutional amendments set for the same November ballot could have a dramatic effect on state elections and household incomes.

These down-ballot items won’t grab voters’ attention like the clash between President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden. But some of these campaigns are driven by the same degree of dark money intrigue, outsize personalities and culture conflicts as the presidential contest.

Consider Amendment 2, which would increase the state’s minimum wage to $15. The pay raise is the brainchild of John Morgan, the Orlando trial lawyer whose firm’s $4.6 million basically financed the ballot campaign, just as he did with medical marijuana measures in 2014 and 2016.

“Our polling has been good,” Morgan said. “And I think it will pass because the pandemic has helped, not hurt.  Think of it: There’s a new phrase in our vocabulary: essential workers. We have a much greater appreciation of essential workers.”

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