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488 posts from October 2008

October 31, 2008

Fidel Castro, Miami Heat rookie snared by no-match

Looks like the no-match law requiring the registrations of new voters to match basic ID laws works and doesn't work. It caught Cuban dictator Fidel Castro (is he more like a Weekend at Bernie's dictator?), but it snared Miami Heat rookie Mario Chalmers as well. (Conspirasits take note: Chalmers is a Dem from Alaska).

From today's story:

What do a promising rookie for the Miami Heat, a systems analyst from Bulgaria, the wife of a Republican congressional candidate and Fidel Castro have in common?

They can't just show up Nov. 4 and fill out a regular ballot. Theirs are among 12,000 names statewide flagged under Florida's Voter Verification Law, a ''no match'' screening process embroiled in legal and political controversy.

The ID check spits out voter registrations that don't match driver's license or social security records. It has left voters on a list dominated by blacks, Hispanics and Democrats in a legal limbo -- unless they supply elections officials with additional proof they are who they say they are.

More than one-third of the people on the ''no match'' list live in Miami-Dade or Broward counties -- most notably Mario Chalmers, a Heat guard who starred in last year's Final Four college basketball championships.

"Florida is the backbreaker for McCain." Et tu, Chuck?

The smartest man in the punditry business, MSNBC's Chuck Todd, all but called Florida for Barack Obama on Morning Joe.

Todd: "Look at everything they're doing with Florida. Bill Clinton got sent there. Al Gore got sent there. The 30-minute infomercial ends in Florida. I think Florida is the backbreaker for McCain. It's what breaks McCain's heart. Florida and New Hampshire will be the Shakespearean tragedy for John McCain - the two states that resurrected his political career."

Joe Scarborough: "My prediction, being from Florida, if everything tightens up more, I think Florida figures out a way to go McCain in the end."

Todd: "Will Crist do everything he can?"

Scarborough: "Oh, my God, yeah."

Todd: "Becuse Crist is the one who dragged him over the finish line in the primary."

Crist endorsed McCain as internals showed the race tightening Jan. 29. Sen. Mel Martinez and Miami's Cuban-American congressional trio played a huge role swinging Hispanics to McCain and away from Rudy Giuliani's campaign for President of Florida. And is Crist's nixing of hard-hitting fliers, playing footsie with the McCain campaign earlier this month, expanding early voting at the behest of Democrats and then swooping in high-profile-style to cut an ad for McCain evidence of Crist "doing everything?"

Ah, who knows but Crist? He's certainly lean and politically hungry, and not one of the fat, sleek-headed men who's known to sleep o-nights.

Mario as mini-Bush

Here's the latest campaign mailer courtesy of the local 527 that's targeting Lincoln and Mario Diaz-Balart for reelection. One South Florida Media Fund says it has blanketed the district with the mailer.

Minildb Voters in the South Florida races say they're tuning out some of the nastier ads in the congressional races -- including one that superimposes a photograph of Raul Martinez over a truck dumping garbage. Mario Diaz-Balart has repeatedly tried to link challenger Joe Garcia to Enron: ''It's outrageous that he's allowed to say anything he wants about me,'' Garcia says. Martinez says it's time for a truth-in-advertising law.

Other independent groups active in the race: the National Right to Life PAC which reports dropping $$ on mailers and radio ads for the D-B's and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

October 30, 2008

Federales coming to Florida poll watch

The U.S. Justice Department announced it will send Election Day poll watchers to 59 different places in 23 states, including Hillsborough, Duval and Seminole counties.

Duval's supervisor of elections, Jerry Holland, said DOJ told him it was coming down because of the colossal blunder of the Republican National Committee in sending out weird mailers to Democrats that sought to raise money for John McCain and that identified them as Republicans. Democrats said this was an example of "voter caging." Holland said it wasn't. He checked it out. It was just sloppiness.

"But one complaint is apparently enough to get these guys down," said Holland. "Doj can do what they want. I've had them before. They're nice people."

According to the DOJ press release:

"The observers and Department personnel will gather information on whether voters are subject to different voting qualifications or procedures on the basis of race, color, or membership in a language minority group; whether jurisdictions are complying with the minority language provisions of the Voting Rights Act; whether jurisdictions permit voters who are blind, disabled, or unable to read or write assistance by a person of their choice; whether jurisdictions allow voters who are blind to cast a private and independent ballot; and whether jurisdictions comply with the provisional ballot requirements of the Help America Vote Act.  To assist in these inquiries, the Department has deployed observers and monitors who speak Spanish, and a variety of Asian and Native American languages.  Both the federal observers and Department personnel will coordinate monitoring activities and maintain contact with local election officials."

RPOF blasts Dems "Kitchen Sink" lawsuit.

From a Republican Party of Florida press release responding to the Florida Democratic Party's voter-challenge lawsuit:

"Republican Party of Florida Chairman Jim Greer released the following statement tonight regarding the Florida Democrats’ baseless lawsuit filed this evening:

This is a bogus lawsuit and an attempt to distract voters from the real issues by throwing in everything but the kitchen sink six days out from Election Day.

The facts are clear and we have already addressed them thoroughly:  the mailer in question is not a Republican Party of Florida mail piece, plain and simple.  It is a Republican National Committee fundraising mailer to which the Republican Party of Florida has absolutely no connection. 

Moreover, the Republican Party of Florida has no intention of challenging any voter on the basis of foreclosure or this mail piece.  As we have said before, the word ‘foreclosure’ is not in our vocabulary.

In regards to the challenges filed in Glades County,  we are in the same boat as everyone else-—we know only what we have read in the newspapers. Simply put, the RPOF did not file these challenges.

This illegitimate lawsuit is not grounded in reality and it is meant to cause chaos and cast doubt on the integrity of our elections. While it is extremely unfortunate that the Democrats would seek to divert voters’ attention from the issues that really matter this election cycle, it is hardly surprising.”

McCain supporter says she was spit on at West Kendal voting site

     Zaida Harriman, a John McCain volunteer, who has stood outside the West Dadel Regional Library since early voting began, felt the wrath of Barack Obama supporters this week, she said.
    On Wednesday, as she held the elaborate political sign she made herself supporting the GOP ticket, she said she was spit on by Obama supporters.
   "I was standing here,''  said the retired school cafeteria worker, pointing to the median where all motorists pass  who are coming to vote at the library complex  at 9445 Coral Way.
    "These two young girls driving by in a car saw my sign, yelled and spit at me and threw
their gum at me, too'' she said.
   She said the incident was followed by a small scuffle between other McCain  and Obama supporters. It all ended with a female Obama supporter so agitated, Miami-Dade fire rescue had to be called to treat her.
   "The whole thing was very distasteful,'' Harriman said.
    But on Thursday, a day later  - and Harriman's 68th birthday - she was back at her spot,
stomping for McCain, proudly holding her homemade GOP sign.
    Why does she support the McCain/Palin ticket? It has largely to do with her experience in Cuba.   "The word change is very dangerous. In my country, it lead to a revolution,''  she said.

Raul defends the Palmetto punch

Raul Martinez participates in a wide-ranging interview on SportsTalk 790 AM's The Ticket that opens with whether he's ever seen a chicken sacrificed.

Asked about the 1999 incident in which he was videotaped roughing up a protestor, he says he was defending the cops: "When you're a hands-on individual, you got to use your hands," Martinez says, noting the guy he clocked had a criminal record and was "not a spring chicken, nice guy.

"I was not the bad guy, the bad guy was the guys who were taking over the Palmetto," he said.

"Am I colorful? Absolutely," he tells host Dan LeBatard. "But you're going to expect me in Congress to fight for you. Not with my hands..."

Click here to listen and scroll down on the left to the Martinez interview.

Martinez calls out Lincoln Diaz-Balart's latest attack ad

Raul Martinez denounced Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart Thursday for using a former Hialeah police officer to trash him in his latest anti-Martinez TV ad.

Bill O'Connell, a retired Hialeah police captain, appears in the ad accusing Martinez of being the "most corrupt politician you will ever see in your life.''

''The new ad is a former disgruntled police officer that cannot speak for police officers, and had Lincoln Diaz-Balart vetted this individual he would have found out very easily by just calling the city that this was the police officer that tried to steal from the city,'' Martinez said at a press conference. "He was caught. He pretended to be injured.''

Attention earthlings, Barack Obama should be your new leader

The founder of the Raelins, a sect that in late 2002 (from a Hollywood Beach hotel) claimed to have cloned a human -- with no proof -- have declared their presidential preference. Here's the press release:

"In a rare statement regarding elections, Rael, founder of the International Raelian Movement publicly announced his support for Barack Obama in the upcoming US presidential election. Rael said 'I support him because it would be an historical event to have, especially in a land which was built upon slavery, a Black president. And of course I support his position on other things like stem cell research and especially his promise for ending the war in Iraq which was illegal and based on lies.

Continue reading "Attention earthlings, Barack Obama should be your new leader" »

Florida Dems sue Republicans over voter challenges

From a press release:

"Today the Florida Democratic Party joined two Florida citizens in taking legal action against the Republican Party of Florida and the Republican National Committee to prevent mass frivolous challenges against Florida voters in the presidential election.

Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Karen Thurman issued the following statement:

"This week, Governor Charlie Crist took an important step toward maintaining the integrity of this election by extending the hours for all early vote sites across the state. We applaud this effort that helps more Floridian voters exercise their right to vote."

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