Election 2012

Dispatches
11:48 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Dispatch: The Server And The Cat

Patti Wilde and her bar mate Larry
YouTube Screenshot

During the previous debate, our Dispatches from the Swing State team met an interesting character in a Key West pub -- a local server named Patti Wilde who is originally from Cincinnati and is something of a local celebrity.

Or, as she explains it, "I mean, I used to be. I've been here 30 years so they go, 'oh, Cincinnati Patti's here.' But now they don't do that anymore. They go, 'Larry!'"

"Larry" is Patti Wilde's cat -- a very large cat that sits calmly on the bar stool wherever she goes.

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Political Fundraising
11:26 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Host Of Romney's '47-Percent' Fundraiser Is Set To Host Paul Ryan

A host of one of Romney's controversial fundraising dinners is going to host another event in Boca Raton for the campaign.
Talk Radio News Service/ Flickr

Boca Raton's Marc Leder, who is best known for hosting a dinner earlier this year in which presidential candidate Mitt Romney said 47 percent of people will vote for Obama because they are "dependent upon government," is going to hold yet another event this Friday at a country club in Boca Raton.

This fundraiser, however, will feature Romney's Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan.

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35,000 Have Cast Ballots in Miami Dade
9:48 am
Thu October 18, 2012

500,000 Floridians Have Already Voted

Absentee ballots are pouring in across Florida.
Vaguely Artistic Flickr/Creative Commons

Election Day is less than three weeks away, but half a million votes are already in in Florida.

The Miami Herald reports the heaviest voting is taking place in Miami Dade, Tampa Bay and along the I-4 corridor.

About 500,000 Floridians have already cast absentee ballots, and 1.8 million more have requested these ballots be mailed to them.

Heavy interest in the presidential race is believed to be behind the rush to vote so soon.

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Senate Debate
8:56 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Showdown At Nova: Bill Nelson, Connie Mack Mix It Up In First And Only Senate Debate

Mack, left, and Nelson debated at Nova Southeastern University
Credit candidate web sites

Fact checkers were up all night after Wednesday's Senate debate between Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson and his Republican challenger, U. S. Connie Mack. Facts and truth were relative things, many agreed, during the one and only chance Florida voters will have to see the candidates debate.

Mack is enjoying a bounceback after trailing in the polls for several weeks and the debate at Nova  Southeastern University was animated with a few excursions into testy.

Topics included Cuba, foreign policy, health care and the candidates' respective records. 

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News
8:55 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Churches Hope To Unite Flocks After Election

St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Palmetto Bay is one of hundreds around the country planning to take part in this event.
Laura Coburn

After the final vote is cast next month, the country may be in need of some healing and reconciliation.

That's the idea behind Election Day Communion.

Hundreds of churches across the country will be holding services election night and serving communion including one in South Florida.

Reverend Spencer Potter is the rector of St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Palmetto Bay.

He says the service will be a time for the whole congregation to unite.

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Absentee Ballot Challenge
7:55 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Judge Rejects Absentee Ballot Challenge In Miami-Dade Democratic House Race

On to November: Watson keeps her primary win over Julien.
candidate web site photos
  • Margie Menzel reports on the case from Tallahassee.

State Rep. Barbara Watson will keep her 13-vote Democratic primary win over fellow Rep. John Patrick Julien. A Tallahassee judge ruled Wednesday that, despite some suspicious signatures on several absentee ballots cast for Watson, there wasn't enough evidence to overturn the result.

As Julien considers his options, Watson is preparing for the general election which she is likely to win. Heavily Democratic District 107 produced only a write-in candidate to oppose her.

Politics
6:22 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

'Lynn, Who?': Debate Puts Small Boca Raton University On The Map

Lynn University's official Debate t-shirt
C. DiMattei

If you’re a small, private university with a less-than-stellar reputation, what’s a good way to boost your profile?

For Lynn University it was a no-brainer: Host one of the most important events in American politics.

"We've been waiting for this moment for a long time," says Dr. Kevin Ross, Lynn University's president.

The “moment” arrives on Monday, when President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney arrive on Lynn’s Boca Raton campus for the third and final presidential debate before Election Day.

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Ballot Measures
5:22 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Amendment 6: Right To Privacy Or Parental Rights?

The Archdiocese of Miami is funding a campaign to pass Amendment 6, because they say they want to store parental rights in abortion matters.
Ashley Lopez WLRN

One of the constitutional amendments on the ballot this November takes on the controversial and politically charged issue of abortion.

Amendment 6, if passed, would prohibit public funding for abortions in the state, but it would also take away a right to privacy explicitly contained in Florida’s Constitution.

This has women’s rights activists in the state up in arms over concerns that this could be the beginning of greater abortion restrictions.

A Right To Privacy

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Presidential Debates
7:07 am
Wed October 17, 2012

How Obama Got His Groove Back, And Other Debate Takeaways

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and President Obama spar over energy policy during the second presidential debate at Hofstra University on Tuesday.
Charlie Neibergall AP

Originally published on Wed October 17, 2012 1:25 am

Anyone who thought the presidential candidates couldn't get aggressive within a town hall-style format underestimated the sharp differences in policy that divide them.

President Obama and Mitt Romney remained continuously critical against one another throughout their second debate Tuesday night. Neither ever seemed to finish a statement without launching an attack against his opponent.

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Ballot Measures
4:56 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

What Religious Leaders Think About Florida's 'Religious Freedom' Amendment

Pastor Guillermo Marquez Sterling in Coral Gables is afraid Amendment 8 will hurt religious freedom in the state.
Ashley Lopez/ WLRN

In November, Floridians will decide whether or not to remove a state ban that prohibits the use of tax money for the funding of religious groups.

While the Catholic Church in the state remains one of the biggest proponents of this so-called “Religious Freedom” amendment, some religious leaders are weary of the measure.

Guillermo Marquez-Sterling, a pastor at the United Church of Christ in Coral Gables, says he’s concerned that, if Amendment 8 passes, if tax money could fund religious organizations, religious institutions like his will actually lose some of their freedom.

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Election Communion Day
3:03 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

South Dade Church Offers Election Night Solace For Campaign-Battered Souls

Forget Election Here: South Florida's only church for election night services is St. Andrews Episcopal in Palmetto Bay.
Credit Laura Coburn

Reconciliation. Redemption. Binding up the nation's mostly self-inflicted wounds. There's going to be a need for all of that after this bitter election cycle is over.

And that need is where Election Communion Day comes from. More than 300 churches in 44 states have signed on to conduct services and offer communion right after the polls close on Election Day.

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Election 2012
2:35 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Politics Tuesday: Debates Matter, Especially in Florida

After tonight's presidential debate, the candidates come to Lynn University for the final debate.
klootch1 flickr

President Obama and Mitt Romney meet in their second presidential debate tonight in Hempstead, NY. Then, Boca Raton becomes the center of the political universe next Monday, October 22 when Lynn University hosts the final encounter between the two candidates before election day.

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Lynn University Debate
2:02 pm
Tue October 16, 2012

Lynn University Invites Tweeters To "Lounge" Around During Debate

C. DiMattei

Lynn University students are rolling out the digital red carpet for political watchers in advance of the last Presidential Debate of 2012.

The small Boca Raton university is hosting the final face-off between President Obama and his Republican challenger Mitt Romney on Monday, October 22nd.

Lynn spokesman Joshua Glanzer says the university enlisted a core group of student volunteers to interact with Twitter and Facebook users within the school's new Social Media Lounge.

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Politics
11:46 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Elections Supervisor: “Perfect Storm” Of Long Lines Ahead For Voters

Leon County Supervisor of Elections Ion Sancho
leonvotes.org

At the urging of the Obama campaign, Florida voters are showing up at elections offices around the state to fill out absentee ballots.

This comes on the heels of elections supervisors in Broward and Palm Beach counties advising voters to get absentee ballots and mail them.

The reason: long ballots and possibly long waits.

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Regulating The Debates
10:33 am
Tue October 16, 2012

Leaked! The Candidates' Agreement On How To Run The Presidential Debates

There are rules for these things.
Credit DonkeyHotey on flickr

For debate watchers, this MAY help you understand what you're seeing tonight. Mark Halperin at Time magazine has obtained the official 2012 presidential debate rules and put them on his blog.  This is the agreement reached by the two campaigns and neither the Commission on Presidential Debates nor the moderators were parties to it. Highlights below, see it all here.

What would happen if another candidate qualified for the debates.

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