Hurricane Michael strengthened into a Category 4 storm early on Wednesday.
The storm is expected to plow into Florida's Gulf shore with towering waves and roof-shredding winds as 500,000 people were under evacuation orders and advisories.
The very dangerous storm strengthened as it moved north over the Gulf of Mexico and by 8 a.m. ET it was carrying top winds of 145 miles per hour (230 km per hour), the National Hurricane Center said.
Dear Florida voters,
Can we talk? I know you're busy right now, what with another monster storm about to hit. You're more concerned with boarding up your property and getting ready for power outages -- unless you've won the hurricane lottery and you've already had to evacuate.
Are you tired yet?
You've had eight years of Gov. Rick Scott, a man so beholden to corporate fossil fuel interests that he actually forbade members of his administration to write or say the words "climate change." And what did you get in return?
Destroying the ecological wonder of the Everglades to keep the sugar industry happy.
And of course, he wants oil drilling off the coast. Good luck with playing those odds!
I know he seems so calm and reassuring when he's on your teevee, talking about storm prep. But it's kind of like the arsonist who shows up at the scene of his crime.
And now he's running for the Senate?
Please, Florida, don't let Rick Scott do to national climate change policies what he did to Florida's. The oil lobby can't get enough of him -- that's why people in the industry are sending him so much money.
If nothing else, you should have figured out by now that Republican climate policy (or non-policy, more accurately) is bad for business -- in your case, tourism. Who's coming to Florida if they can't frolic in the red tide? If they have to cancel because there's yet another catastrophic hurricane? (Not to mention, the very long road back of rebuilding.)
You also have another Republican, Bill DeSantis, running to replace Rick Scott.
Dear Florida voters, I'll admit it: I love Florida. I love your warm, humid air, I love your easygoing ways. But I don't like giving my hard-earned money to a tourism industry that props up politicians who do such long-lasting damage to your state. I think it would be in your long-term interest to vote for the Democrats. (Plus, I'd love to come back for another visit.)