* “Europe has never needed a strong (Angela) Merkel more. In 2017, she’ll be unavailable for the role.”–Ian Bremmer, founder and president of the Eurasia Group, a political-risk consultant firm.
* “It isn’t the clash of civilizations so much as the clash of artificially reconstructed civilizations that is taking place.”–Robert D. Kaplan, author of “Earning the Rockies: How Geography Shapes America’s Role in the World.”
* “Iran is playing with fire. They don’t appreciate how ‘kind’ President Obama was to them. Not me.”–President Donald Trump.
* “The world’s on fire. We have more challenges than any time in the last 70 years. Whatever influence I have, I need to exercise it.”–Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.
* “If there is to be any kind of loyal Republican opposition on Capitol Hill, (McCain’s) already its de facto leader.”–Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times.
* “The real benefit of TPP went beyond trade. It was about leadership in Asia.”–Rice University economist Russell Green.
* “Two words: Vladimir Putin.”–Florida Sen. Bill Nelson, explaining why he opposed the nomination of Rex Tillerson as secretary of state.
* “We expect to be cutting a lot out of Dodd-Frank because, frankly, I have so many people, friends of mine that had nice businesses, they can’t borrow money. They just can’t get any money because the banks just won’t let them borrow it because of the rules and regulations in Dodd-Frank.”–President Donald Trump.
* “There is unprecedented citizen engagement right now. Phone calls to the office are in the thousands. Social media is on fire. People are protesting. They’re in a way leading the charge. These engaged citizens understand what’s at stake.”–U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa.
* “The bedrock of this country are immigration and really a great separation between church and state.”–Shahid Khan, the Muslim, immigrant owner of the Jacksonville Jaguars.
* “The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law-enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!”–President Donald Trump, in criticizing federal Judge James Robart, who imposed a temporary nationwide halt to the president’s order barring refugees and those from seven majority-Muslim nations from entering this country.
* “The president’s hostility toward the rule of law is not just embarrassing, it is dangerous.”–Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.
* “If the last president was too above the fray, this one is the fray.”–Maureen Dowd, New York Times.
* “This is not business as usual. At the risk of being melodramatic, I feel like we are at a pivotal moment in the history of the country.”–Tallahassee-based Republican strategist–and Trump critic–J.M. “Mac” Stipanovich.
* “For the last several years, whenever Congress would concoct some way to roll back a rule protecting clean air or clean water or undermine the fight against climate change, we always felt confident as we had an adult in charge at the White House. Now, what used to be a wish list of the oil and coal and gas industry has become the to-do list for Congress and the White House.”–Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club.
* “Most candidates want to win the election so that they can become president, but it seems like Donald Trump wanted to become president so that he could win the election. It’s all about winning.”–Dan P. McAdams, the Atlantic.
* “Something changed after Nov. 8. I don’t think people saw how fragile our democracy is.”–Juan Cuba, chairman of the Miami-Dade Democrats.
* “It is the rule of judges to apply, not alter, the work of the people’s representatives. A judge who likes every outcome he reaches is very likely a bad judge.”–Judge Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court.
* “I don’t think government should spend money on tourism and marketing at all.”–Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran.
* “A medical tourist is like a regular tourist on steroids. They spend more, they stay longer, and it’s a much more solid economic boost to our state.”–State Sen. Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach.
* “I remain confident that there’s no better place for the Rays than at the Trop site. But, because they are a regional asset, I will do what I can to help them succeed no matter where they are, as long as they’re in the Tampa Bay region.”–St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman.
* “A one-county approach does very little to solve the regional challenge–the real challenge.”–Tampa Bay Partnership CEO Rick Homans, a major proponent of a regional approach to transportation in the Tampa Bay region.
* “The future of transportation isn’t just metal on wheels. It’s tech. We need to have as many vehicles on the road as possible that aren’t privately owned.”–Mark Sharpe, executive director of the Tampa Innovation Alliance.
* “Some people think rail is a U.N. plot.”–Mayor Bob Buckhorn.
* “They say that if you can sell it or source it in Tampa Bay, you can send it by plane, train or truck anywhere on the planet. As a result, Tampa Bay is increasingly becoming the point of departure or arrival for goods and materials.”–Ryan Kratz, Colliers International regional president.
* “We’re trying to draw people downtown regardless of the elephant in the room. If you put the right project down there, people are going to come no matter what.”–Hoyt Hamilton, Clearwater City Council member, alluding to Scientology in the context of downtown revitalization plans.