The Button Lens
5:29 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

The Button Man: This Job Brought To You By Mitt Romney

Marvin Francis, 44, graphic designer and political button salesman outside of a recent rally for former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney
Credit Photo by Kenny Malone

Marvin Francis crouched over and dug into a yellow and forest green La Salle High School miniature duffel bag. "'NObama'; 'You Lie,'" he read from a pile of oversized red, white and blue buttons. A small crowd peaked over his shoulders, holding five and ten dollar bills at their sides.

"I think that's all the selection I have left. And 'Obama Sucks,'" he added. "That's the only other one that I have that I didn't want to put out 'cause there's too many young kids."

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Sad Politics
2:28 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

Dear Little Girl: Sorry We Made You Cry About 'Bronco Bamma' And Mitt Romney

We can sympathize, Abigael. She's tired of hearing about "Bronco Bamma and Mitt Romney."

Originally published on Thu November 1, 2012 6:47 am

Oh my goodness, do we feel bad now:

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Politics And Foul Play
11:00 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Scams And Shenanigans To Watch Out For When You Vote

Voters need to be on the look out for political foul play as incidences of shenanigans is on the rise.
Credit Columbia City Blog /Flickr

As you all head to the polls between now and next Tuesday, be vigilant for voting scams and general shenanigans.

The Associated Press reported yesterday that voters in Florida have been inundated with some foul play this election season.

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Hispanic Vote
10:00 am
Thu November 1, 2012

Cubans Are Closing Obama's Lead Among Hispanics In Florida

Obama's lead among Hispanics is strong everywhere-- except Florida.
Credit Matt Ortega /Flickr

Obama might have a sizeable lead among Hispanics nationwide-- but that doesn't seem to be the case in Florida.

Here, Obama's lead is razor thin. As Marc Caputo at The Miami Herald reports, that's because of Florida's Cuban population, which votes heavily Republican.

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South Florida's Brazilian Vote
9:32 am
Thu November 1, 2012

How To Build A Voting Bloc

According to the American Community Survey by the U.S. Census, there are an estimated 21,000 Brazilians living in Broward County and another 12,000 in Miami-Dade.
Credit Ricardo Rosa

An interview with Jonathan Rodrigues from the Brazilian Community Center in Deerfield Beach.

During election season, we tend to hear a lot about the Cuban vote or the Jewish vote. Both are powerful voting blocs that attract the attention—and promises—of politicians.

A young Brazilian community organizer has his eye on what he hopes will become another voting bloc.

Jonathan Rodrigues lives in Pompano Beach and volunteers at the Brazilian Community Center in Deerfield Beach. He got his undergraduate degree at the University of Chicago and spent much of his time there thinking about home—studying South Florida's Brazilian population and considering his own role in that communtity .

Rodrigues is a first-generation Brazilian American. “Historically that first generation is the generation that propels the community forward into civic engagement,” he said.

According to the American Community Survey by the U.S. Census, there are an estimated 21,000 Brazilians living in Broward County and another 12,000 in Miami-Dade. Rodrigues suspects that number is actually a lot higher.

“All you have to do is drive down Sample Road or North Federal Highway in Deerfield Beach and Pompano and you’ll see the proliferation of Brazilian small businesses.”

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9:13 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

How Mitt Romney Dealt With The Hurricane In The Room

Former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney speaks to a crowd at the BankUnited Center in Coral Gables.
Credit Photo by Kenny Malone

Today was an important day for former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney, his first day back from the Hurricane Sandy campaign hiatus.

Romney spent the day in a state uniquely associated with hurricanes (Florida) and made his second stop at a university nicknamed "The Hurricanes" (the University of Miami).

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Politics and Hurricanes
11:30 am
Wed October 31, 2012

Sandy Underscores Debate Over Government's Role

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 1:09 pm

President Obama offered thoughts and prayers Tuesday for all those who have been affected by Sandy. He also offered something more tangible: the full resources of the federal government.

"The most important message I have for them is that America's with you," he said. "We are standing behind you, and we are going to do everything we can to help you get back on your feet."

For Obama, the federal government is a critical vehicle for that kind of help. Republicans put more faith in local government, and even voluntary efforts.

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Broward Mental Health
11:00 am
Wed October 31, 2012

The Politics Of Mental Health Services In Broward

A shareholder for Concordia gave $125, 000 to Gov. Rick Scott's political action committee while DCF considered Broward Behavioral's bid for a contract.
Credit Florida Department of Children and Families / www.dcf.state.fl.us

Dan Christensen of Browardbulldog.org reported last week on some of the interesting characters that were (sort of) part of a privatization deal between the Department of Children and Families and a company in Broward.

DCF put out a bid several months ago to privatize the management of mental health and substance abuse services in Broward County.

A non-profit group called Broward Behavioral Health Coalition eventually won the $45 million deal from DCF.

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10:00 am
Wed October 31, 2012

VIDEO: Group Tells Floridians To Vote In Order To Avoid Zombie Apocalypse

Well, Happy Halloween everyone.

In the spirit of today's festivities, here is a video from Florida New Majority (they have an office here in Miami) that warns Floridians that the only way to avoid a "Romney Zombie Apocalypse" is to vote.

The group says:

In a state plagued by natural disasters, exploding pythons, and the strangest politics on the planet, Florida voters are bracing for the latest horror -- zombie apocalypse! 

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Printing Problems
2:00 pm
Tue October 30, 2012

More Ballot Problems in Palm Beach

Palm Beach has another ballot printing error.
Credit Chris Coleman/ Flickr

Palm Beach County has seen yet another printing problem during this election.

According to The Palm Beach Post, "Elections Supervisor Susan Bucher said Monday that she has been forced to send new absentee ballots to about 500 county residents because of a new printing error."

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11:56 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Election Day Polling Location In Broward Closes

A voting location in Broward has closed for Election Day.
Credit Eliza Brown/ Flickr

A fire in the First Church of God in Broward (1242 N. Andrews Ave, Fort Lauderdale) has closed that polling location for Election Day.

Everyone who is assigned to that location will now be voting at Thurgood Marshall Elementary School located at 800 NW 13 Street.

This is a temporary change, which means no one will be issued a voting card for that precinct. Every voter in that precinct should have received a letter notifying them of this change.

If you have any questions or concerns about this change, voters are encouraged to call 954-357-7050. 

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10:30 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Why Miami's Early Voting Lines Are So Long

Voters waiting in a two hour line to vote in Miami Dade.
Credit Ashley Lopez / WLRN

This weekend, thousands of early voters in Miami stood through some very long lines.

And it looks like the line hasn't let up.

On Monday afternoon, a workday, lines where still up to four hours in Miami Dade.

At North Dade Regional Library the wait was three-and-a-half hours. At Coral Reef and West Dade Regional Library it was about three hours, as well. However, the longest lines in the county were at North Dade Regional Library, where the wait time there was a grueling four hours. 

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Ballot Measures
3:38 pm
Mon October 29, 2012

A Guide To Miami-Dade's Charter Amendments

Here is a breakdown of the 8 charter amendments in Miami Dade.
Credit Fairfax County /Flickr

Besides the 11 proposed amendments to the state Constitution, Miami-Dade dwellers will also be deciding the fate of 8 proposed charter amendments.

 These charter amendments are significantly shorter than the state-level changes, but there are quite a few of them-- and like most ballot measures, they can be kind of confusing. However, here is our breakdown created with the help of The Florida League of Women Voters' 2012 Voting Guide

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Election 2012
11:00 am
Mon October 29, 2012

Romney Visits Florida On First Day Of Early Voting

Originally published on Sun October 28, 2012 10:58 am



Republican Mitt Romney got a boost in Iowa yesterday from the Des Moines Register, becoming the first Republican that the paper has endorsed since Richard Nixon. Governor Romney was in Florida trying to drum up the votes on the first day early voting. NPR's Debbie Elliott reports.

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Politics And Climate Change
10:50 am
Mon October 29, 2012

Hurricane CSI: Frankenstorm Sandy And Climate Change

Hurricane Sandy's huge cloud extends up to 2,000 miles based on a satellite image from Sunday.

Originally published on Wed October 31, 2012 3:10 pm

It was not a good year for people, weather and climate. The winter was strangely warm in many places and the summer ridiculously hot. As a large fraction of the country suffered through extreme or even extraordinary drought many folks naturally wondered, "Is this climate change?" Then along came a presidential election in which the words "climate change" disappeared from the dialogue. Now, just a week or so before voting day, the convergence of westbound Hurricane Sandy with a eastbound cold front is creating a massive storm, a Frankenstorm even, that is threatening millions of Americans.

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