So what kind of a speaker does a Democratic club in Palm Beach County look for to address its hard-core members? How about a Republican governor?
Such was the proposition presented to Delray Beach Democratic congressman Robert Wexler's office by the Century Village and West Palm Beach Democratic Clubs recently. Would it be okay to invite Charlie Crist to speak at their meetings? Wexler and his staff said that it would.
Thursday, on a drive from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, Crist said he agreed. "I think it's okay, too. I would be honored, frankly," he said on his way from one appointment of his trade mission to Israel to another. "I am a Republican. I'm proud of my party, but as I said even during the campaign, I want to be the governor for all the people. I would look forward to the opportunity to speak to good Democrats in our state."
Thursday, May 31, 2007
Hillary And Edwards Tied In Florida
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
From Tallahassee to Tel Aviv
Monday, May 28, 2007
St. Petersburg Times, FL -
Which helps explain why Florida Democrats are in such a bind now that America's biggest swing state has decided to snub the rules of the national parties ... READ MORE.......
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Despite my and others' best efforts, [Deputy Attorney General, Paul McNulty]'s public testimony was incomplete or inaccurate in a number of respects. As explained in more detail in my written remarks, I believe that the Deputy was not fully candid about his knowledge of White House involvement in the replacement decision, failed to disclose that he had some knowledge of the White House's interest in selecting Tim Griffin as Interim U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, inaccurately described the Department's internal assessment of the Parsky Commission, and failed to disclose that he had some knowledge of allegations that Tim Griffin had been involved in vote "caging" during his work on the President's 2004 campaign.
This is of stunning import, and should be addressed immediately by the Judiciary Committee, the White House, and all of Congress. An explanation is demanded--now--by we the American public. We're aware that you're going to want to sweep this under-the-rug, but we're not going to let you. This entire investigation of the U.S. Attorney scandal hedges on caging-lists, the real crimes committed by the Bush administration and their attorney general, Alberto Gonzales, as well as operatives of the national Republican Party.
This is literally the last straw, and we're going to wash all of you out if we don't see a real commitment to democracy and the rule of law regarding "caging" practices in our elections. They are a violation of federal voting-laws, in-particular, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. There can be no faith in this government--or in the notion that we live in a democracy--until the issue of caging-lists and the illegal, coordinated elimination of voters from elections is addressed. Also, you have some charges to file against former-Deputy Attorney General McNulty, he has perjured himself before a committee of Congress, a gross violation of federal law. Get to work, we're not taking any excuses.
Washington, DC 20515
|";Caging" in Republican practice|
|Greg Palast describes the way Republicans have used ";Caging Lists" to challenge voters and suppress the vote of minorities and the poor. The trick is that if they discourage a hundred Black voters from voting, they may have lost 10 votes but their opponents will have lost 90.|
Palast's article is a bit dated, having been published June 23, 2006. The VRA was reauthorized and signed into law by Bush on July 27, 2006 for another 25 years, so it remains effective for those jurisdictions it previously applied to. That means that it remains illegal to identify voters by race in order to challenge their right to vote.
That includes targeting districts with a high concentration of African-American voters, sending out registered letters to the registered voters in that district, then challenging those who do not respond or who do not pick up their letters. Registered letters are often used by bill collectors, so people behind on their bills rarely pick up registered letters from unknown addresses. This is not a reliable way to find who has moved, nor is that the purpose. It is just a way of challenging voters who are likely to vote Democratic.
Such practices are going to be quite common in November 2008, illegal or not. Unfortunately, such practices are not nearly as effective for likely Republican voters. It works when used on those minority voters who the Republicans are clearly out to get, such as African-Americans, immigrants, Hispanics, and homosexuals. Except for Republicans in general, there are no such minority groups actively threatened by Democrats.
Saturday, May 26, 2007
> From: Kelly Porter [mailto:email@example.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, August 25, 2004 5:47 PM
> To: Lindy Landreaux - Political; Miriam Moore - Research/Communications; Victoria Newton - Research/Communications; Tim Griffin - Research/Communications; Shawn Reinschmiedt - Research/Communications; firstname.lastname@example.org; Stephen Shiver; email@example.com
> Subject: caging
> The total to date is 1771.
> ATTACHMENT: Caging.xls
From: Carrie Thompson [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Wednesday, August 18, 2004 8:55 PM
To: Sarah Anderson [mailto:email@example.com]
Cc: Andy Palmer [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]; email@example.com
Subject: CSV Files
Friday, May 25, 2007
|'That Strikes at the Core'|
The Black Chronicle, OK
Tom Feeney (Rep., Fla.). Violating the law against politicizing the civil service is no grounds for pride. Miss Goodling's testimony didn't do much to ...
|Immigration fix must consider 'human face'|
Orlando Sentinel, FL - Keller and Tom Feeney have latched onto the "this is amnesty!" cry of demagoguery. "I don't have a problem with immigration," Keller said. ...
|Martinez takes flak on immigration|
Palm Beach Post, FL -
Tom Feeney, who like Martinez is a Republican from Orange County, calls the proposal an "immigration amnesty sellout." Immigration reform supporters have ...
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
This bill would restrict the time period alloted to collect petition signatures, placing a particular burden on volunteer organizations; restrict organizations from compensating petition gatherers for their work, taking away a built in mechanism that makes organizations more accountable for signatures; and creates a revocation process that would encourage "counter campaigns" to set up shop in Florida.
Broward County ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Hialeah ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Jacksonville ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Miami ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Orlando ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Palm Beach County ACORN>> Visit Local Website
St. Petersburg ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Tallahassee ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Tampa ACORN>> Visit Local Website
Monday, May 21, 2007
While The Florida Black Caucus was meeting in Jacksonville, the Small County Coalition was meeting in Gainsville the GLBT Democrats were meeting in Sarasota.
The most influential democratic GLBT leaders were meeting in Sarasota. on May 18,19 and 20Th as were the others, Back Democrats and the Fly Over Counties. The Florida GLBT Caucus had invited Hillary to attend a Coffee on Sunday May 20Th, which was more than feasible for her schedulers, seeing how she would be in New Orleans on Saturday May 19Th and could be in Sarasota Before going on to A fundraiser in Parkland.
Here was her Schedule instead, she went to a Coffee in North Broward, then on to Parkland then on to a Dinner in Fort Lauderdale, all of these events were for the Insiders of Broward and the Wealthy, while the Hillary camp were snubbing the hard working activist of the Democratic Party the Black Caucus The GLBT Caucus and The Small Counties.
Speaking of the GLBT Activist , Nation Wide most GLBT Leaders Have Already signed on to the Edwards Campaign, While Many in Florida are still undecided, If I were Hillary's Team,and wanted to Demonstrate that I wanted Florida's GLBT support I would not have Snubbed 65 of some of the strongest GLBT leaders in Florida.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
GROUPS URGE GOV CRIST NOT TO SIGN THE BILL THAT ENCUMBERS BALLOT INITIATIVES
St. Petersburg Times -- May 20, 2007
by Steve Bousquet
Tallahassee -- The next time someone asks you to sign a petition for a ballot initiative at a park or a mall, that person may be wearing a badge advertising that he or she is being paid for each signature collected.
Thursday, May 17, 2007
We've allowed small, underfunded governmental entities --- such as the thousands of county election offices around the country --- to build the precious and precarious machinery of democracy on top of extremely sensitive, virus prone, high-tech, mission-critical IT hardware and software which even well-funded, highly-trained experts in the private sector have enough trouble keeping secure and online.What must America be thinking to believe that these types of incredibly complicated systems can be properly maintained and secured by small time, local governmental officials who have absolutely no idea how these systems even work --- or don't --- in the first place?
Time: 10:15 AM
Location: Palm Beach Supervisor of Elections Office
240 S Military Trail
West Palm Beach, FL 33415
Executive Office of the Governor
The Capitol, Room 705
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
You can read all about this situation at:
By singling out the youthful member of his constituency, "Do Nothing Dave" has insulted all of the members of his constituency. The blatant false rhetoric and misrepresentation of facts, the distortion of the truth and personal attacks against the unfortunate messenger, have shown clearly why it is time we have a change in this Congressional representative.
At the very least, "Do Nothing Dave" owes both these young members of his constituency, and all members of the public subjected to his partisan misinformation, a personal and sincere apology. Even so, this is probably not enough for him to warrant keeping his current job representing any Floridians in Congress. No less can be expected of a man that is supposed to represent the interests of all members of this beautiful corner of Florida.
To sign a petition demanding apologies from "Do Nothing Dave" for these actions, please fill out the form online at:
By making your voice heard on this issue, we can together effect change for all Floridians.
Indian River County Young Democrats
Monday, May 14, 2007
Sunday, May 13, 2007
Friday, May 11, 2007
Nice work and Jeb can get it
Property Tax Breakthrough? Rubio Speaks ...
- ... and it sounds like he has folded his sales tax tent: "During the past few weeks, Rep. David Simmons, a Republican from Maitland, suggested an idea that met the House's policy goals, and offered an opportunity for opponents of the House plan to reconsider their objections"
.The House is now considering a variation of his idea of dramatically increased homestead exemptions based on a percentage of the value of the home. We think this approach is fair and simple, and eliminates many of the inequities that have developed under our current property-tax structure."Speaker: Florida House set to deliver property-owner protection".
Here is an example of how this approach might work:
On the home's first $300,000 in just value, 80 percent would be exempt from property taxes.
On the next $700,000 in just value, 70 percent would be exempt.
On just value above $1,000,000, 30 percent would be exempt.
Under the numbers used in the example above, the new homestead exemption for a $300,000 home would be $240,000. Using the example above, 90 percent of all homestead property owners would benefit more from this proposal than under the current Save Our Homes structure. The average beneficiary of this approach would see his or her tax bill cut in half.
More: "State Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff, a Fort Lauderdale Republican and staunch defender of Marco Rubio's plan to swap sales taxes for homeowner property taxes, admitted to a group of South Florida Republicans that legislators will need a back up plan when the special session starts June 12." "Bogdanoff backs off sales tax swap".
Pamela Hasterok, writing yesterday, is confident Rubio will back down:
newspapers and pundits judge the governor's first legislative session as less than a success. ..."Crist's wish list mostly met".
[Charlie] didn't -- couldn't -- push Speaker Marco Rubio off his promise to eliminate property taxes in return for raising the sales tax.
"As House Speaker Marco Rubio's top adviser, Richard Corcoran was immersed in crafting a bold but controversial plan to swap property taxes for higher sales taxes."
But as a candidate for the state Senate, Corcoran said Thursday he "opposes any new taxes whatsoever, and that includes the sales tax.""Rubio ex-aide in tight spot on tax swap proposal".
He was careful to say he was giving his general view on taxes, refusing to comment when asked directly about the House plan -- the only property tax proposal that includes a sales tax.
It's the same plan Corcoran's opponents in the Senate District 3 race, Reps. Dennis Baxley and Charlie Dean, voted for last month.
"I'm not going to be pitted against my former boss and friend," Corcoran said. He also refused to detail his involvement in developing the House proposal.
Posted At Florida Politics
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
But no-fault, or some version of it, could still be revived.
GOP Gov. Charlie Crist said he was disappointed that the law would end and that it was likely no-fault would be taken up at a special legislative session on property tax reform that starts June 12.
The end of no-fault would mean lower auto insurance rates for many drivers because they would no longer be required to buy $10,000 worth of personal injury protection, or PIP, which pays the medical bills and lost wages of people injured in auto accidents and funeral costs for those killed.
The system's demise also would end restrictions that now prevent injured motorists from filing pain-and-suffering lawsuits against the at-fault driver unless a doctor or chiropractor certifies that the injury is permanent.
"This is a victory for consumers," said Chris Neal, a spokesman for State Farm Mutual Insurance Co., Florida's largest auto insurer.
But the Florida Hospital Association warned Friday evening that emergency-room trauma care could be jeopardized.
"The seriousness of this issue cannot be ignored," Wayne NeSmith, the association's president, said in a statement. ''Some hospitals may have to reconsider whether they can continue to operate their trauma centers, and that would be a tragic loss for the people of Florida.'' Hospitals are heavily dependent on reimbursements paid by auto insurers. Without no-fault, a person's health insurance would replace PIP as the primary payer of auto-accident medical treatment.
Auto insurers say they also plan to offer new optional medical coverage.
The legislature has been divided over what to do with no-fault and have heard conflicting views from dozens of lobbyists representing auto insurers, health insurers, medical groups and trial lawyers.
The Senate this week passed a bill that would extend the no-fault law until 2012 and would tell the state's Financial Services Department and Office of Insurance Regulation to use the extension to review the no-fault system and assess how it affects insurance rates, consumers, health-care providers and the trial court system.
The House made major changes to the Senate proposal, including limiting medical care to $10,000 for emergency care and $3,000 for outpatient care. But a divided House failed to take up the issue.
In 2000, a statewide grand jury concluded that the no-fault system was full of fraud and that a cottage industry of auto-accident medical clinics had developed.
After several years of debate, the legislature agreed in 2003 to let no-fault expire this year, with the idea that the pending disappearance would force legislators to write a new law. But even that threat was not enough to bring lawmakers together.
"We had been working for a number of weeks, trying to get everyone to buy into real reform, and there were some special-interest groups blocking it in the Senate," said Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale.
"We'll see what happens when it sunsets. Maybe nothing happens," she said. "Maybe we can save Floridians a lot of money on their car insurance, and we can do our own Geico commercial." Sen. Jeff Atwater, R-North Palm Beach, predicted that the issue would be addressed during the special session.
"It allows everyone to take a deep breath, and allows the presiding officers to perhaps revisit the issue," he said.
By The Palm Beach Post, Fla.
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
TWO BILLS PASS THE LEGISLATURE, SENT TO GOVERNOR
HB537 Paper Ballots mixed with initiative deforms and SB 900 citizen
initiative deforms and SB1920 Property Rights allows a Publix to pick
who is allowed to set up for signature gatherings; these bills passed during
the final two days of floor action by the Florida Legislature May 3-4.
SB1920 passed 4/30/07.
On Thursday 5/3, the House unanimously accepted the
"Election Reform" train which included the HB537 Paper Trail reforms and SB900
restrictions against citizens' initiatives. On the last day of session,
the House backed down from its even more anti-citizen version of
Initiative Reforms and accepted the Senate's version, and both bills are heading
for the Governor's desk. At first glance, the two so-called "good
government" bills are opposites, with the latter bill including changes to only a
single statute and the former boasting comprehensive (and expensive) reforms
to a variety of elections related subjects:
a.. "Paper Trail" voting machines; funding and requirement of optical
scan machines and marksense technology replacing touchscreens in the fifteen
counties where they currently exist (and twenty-nine counties authorized for
ballot-on-demand for early voting sites); CONGRATULATIONS TO SO MANY
ALLIES ON THE ONGOING VOTING MACHINES' PAPER TRAIL!!
b.. Third party Voter Registration Organizations (similar to the
legislation declared unconstitutional previously);
c.. Citizens' Initiative restrictions against petition drives,
including an onerous and expensive, new process for gathering signatures AGAINST
petitions signed by citizens who would be singled out and lobbied to
subsequently "Revoke" the original petition signature;
d.. The earlier Presidential Primary date for the last Tuesday in January
e.. various Elections Commission changes, including weakening
citizen's complaints against possible violators;
f.. internal changes for political parties;
g.. changes in campaign contribution restrictions;
h.. streamlining the transfer of campaign contributions for political
committees and "committees of continuous existence," but also requiring
unions to list all dues-paying members in their reports;
i.. changes in eligibility and timing for different levels of
political candidates, including municipal, special district and federal
j.. changes in early registration for young voters;
k.. removal of two of the identification documents to allow voters to
l.. NO Severability Clause, which appeared in earlier versions, and
which usually are necessary in legislative "trains" in order to protect the
other provisions if one or more sections of the bill are later found to be
Unconstitutional. This decision was deliberate to intimidate
supporters of Paper Trail legislation from participating in ANY legal challenge to
the remaining anti-citizen provisions of the bill.
m.. Effective date of January 1, 2008, unless otherwise indicated in
So, is this 80-page bill a Legislative TRAIN? You betcha. Parts of
this bill (there are 57 "sections") came from various bills and
amendments from both the Senate and House; the final bill looks very little like
the original HB 537 which passed the House floor on March 21 by a vote of
115-1; and, for example, when the bill was substituted for SB 960, which had
already become a train in the Senate, the legislation faced 20 floor
amendments during the last six days of session. The bill now changes
or creates 52 sections of Florida Statutes, ranging across 13 different
Chapters of Florida law.
This bill makes all future initiative campaigns very difficult to even
put new changes on the ballot anywhere in Florida (besides proposed
constitutional amendments). This restrictive new structure will
apply to Florida Hometown Democracy, as well as any future reemergence of
Redistricting Initiatives, or clarifications or strengthening of
Constitutional Rights, citizen-sponsored proposals for changes in
government financing or election opportunities, etc. The so called good
government bill changed dramatically for the worse on a 3-2 vote on April 24 when
Senators Fasano, Diaz de la Portilla and Webster voted to use the paper
trail bill against citizen initiatives.
SB 900 ANTI-CITIZEN INITIATIVE BILL PASSED ON FINAL DAY OF LEGISLATIVE
This bill was stripped of several Bad provisions which had been passed
by the House. Since sponsor Joe Pickens and other supporters knew the
session was winding down, they chose to accept the Senate version rather than
get only the provisions in the HB 537 Elections Train which already passed
the previous day. Under statutory construction rules, the later-passed
bill supersedes, so the language in SB 900 would replace the new sections in
Florida Statute 100.371 as changed in HB 537. Significantly, the new
language in SB900 would go into effect on August 1, 2007 (as opposed
to 1/1/08 in HB537).
(SB 900 and HB 7009) did record opposition votes in both chambers:
passed the Senate 27-9 on 4/27, 82-35 on the House floor 5/2, and
96-22 on 5/4. HB 7009 came out of its Council of origin March 8
SB 1920 SENT TO GOVERNOR MONDAY April 30
After the Senate passed the Publix/ Chamber's so-called private
property rights bill allowing mall owners to prohibit citizen petitioners on
4/27 , the House unanimously sent the bill on to the
Governor at the beginning of Week 9 by a vote of 119-0.
Overall, not a good week for issues critical to Democracy and the
Monday, May 07, 2007
Saturday, May 05, 2007
for more see: http://chiari08.com
Friday, May 04, 2007
Thursday, May 03, 2007
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Former Feeney Staffer Writes Newspaper Defending Feeney; Doesn't Mention Past Job
Congressman Tom Feeney has demonstrated his commitment to his constituents by setting the record straight and responding to recent reports in the Orlando Sentinel. I'd like to thank him for fighting back.We live in a time when an investigation is immediately interpreted as guilt, and media implications are taken as gospel. An all-too-common result is that good, hardworking and dedicated leaders are persecuted in the court of public opinion, long before official investigations can clear them of any wrongdoing.Lila BuchananWinter Springs
washingtonpost.com: Faces of the Fallen: Florida
Q: The Florida Politics Blog
The Buzz: Florida Politics | Tampabay.com - St. Petersburg Times
March On Politics
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- Say What?
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- Election 2004: Redux
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- CRIST: VETO BILL ON PETITION DRIVES
- More Crist Veto's
- Crist's Trade Mission To Israel
- Ouch That hurts
- Open Letter To: Hon. John Conyers Jr.
- What Is Caging And How Is It Ilegal
- Republican Party Of Florida Distributed 2004 cagin...
- Tom Feeney Update
- Charlie's Veto Pen
- Defend Democracy and Citizen Initiative Process
- Hillary Snubs GLBT Activist's
- PETITIONS MAY FACE HURDLES
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- FLORIDA HOUSE BILL 537
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- A Tree Grows on Las Olas Boulevard
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- Property-tax session set for June
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