Florida Legislature's Weirdest Bills of 2013

Every spring, they pour into Tallahassee like a gaggle of clowns falling out of a tiny car, except much less funny and far more harmful to Florida's residents. They're members of the Florida House of Representatives, and as 2013's legislative session opens this week, they're set to wreak havoc on the Sunshine State yet again.

As a service to our readers, we've combed through more than 500 bills already filed to find the best, the worst, and the weirdest in this session:

The Best

Bill: "Wine," sponsored by Reps. Frank Artiles and Dana Young

The gist: Legalizes larger containers of wine

Our take: Sometimes a box of Merlot just isn't enough. Introducing: WineTubz™

Bill: "Protest Activities," sponsored by Rep. Tom Rooney

The gist: Prohibits protests within a set distance of funerals and memorial services

Our take: Suck it, Westboro Baptist Church!

The Worst

Bill: "American Founders' Month," by Rep. Michael Bileca

The gist: Designates September as "American Founders' Month"

Our take: How come no one ever talks about those awesome white guys who founded our country? If only we had a day to honor the Pilgrims by eating some turkey, or maybe another day to remember Christopher Columbus.

Bill: "Public School Buses" by Rep. Irv Slosberg

The gist: Allows advertising on public school buses

Our take: "Mommmm, I don't want to ride the Fish McBites School Bus Sponsored by Beef 'O' Brady's to Jiffy Lube Elementary!"

The Weirdest

Bill: "Gov. Scott's Secretary," by Rep. Heather Fitzenhagen

The gist: Revokes Gov. Rick Scott's right to hire a private secretary

Our take: The Founding Fathers intended our governors to take their own dictation. It's in the Constitution — just trust us on that.

The bill: "Open Parties," by Rep. Tom Rooney

The gist: Expands a law against open house parties to all open parties

Our take: No more wild keggers on the beach? What is this, Soviet Russia?

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Tim Elfrink is a former investigative reporter and managing editor for Miami New Times. He has won the George Polk Award and was a finalist for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting.
Contact: Tim Elfrink