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Advisory group begins examining what went wrong in Miami-Dade elections

For an advisory group convened to find a cure for what ails Miami-Dade’s election system, Wednesday marked the first step toward a diagnosis.

The symptoms are common knowledge by now: Long lines during early voting and on Election Day. Slow counting following a surge in absentee ballots.

But what caused the illness, and how can it be prevented in the future?

To figure it all out, the group appointed by Mayor Carlos Gimenez spent its first meeting getting to know state and local elections laws and practices — a lesson that also offered a glimpse at exactly what went wrong.

The goal, Gimenez told the group, is to make sure that the next time Miami-Dade makes international Election Day headlines, they don’t become fodder for late-night comedians.

“I want our citizens to walk out of the ballot box and say, ‘Wow, that was the way to conduct a presidential election,’ ” he said.

The group heard from the assistant county attorney in charge of elections and from Elections Supervisor Penelope Townsley, whose department runs about 20 elections a year.

“We’re very proud of the policies and procedures that we have in place,” she said. “However, we do realize that there’s opportunity for improvement.”

Among the challenges on Nov. 6 that Townsley outlined:


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Gimenez forgot he was strong Mayor, and Townsley is incompetant. What's so tough to figure out.


Gimenez is the problem here. He towed the Republican line and supressed the vote. Just look in the mirror for a quick answer and please stop wasting everyone's time with your dog an pony show.


That guy obama won because of voter fraud! We TeaPublicans WERE leading in the polls before people voted….and then look what happened: Obama’s victory was more decisive than Bush’s in 2004! Cook Political is reporting that obama’s national lead over Romney continues to expand as votes keep on coming in. The report says it’s now obama 50.9%, Romney 47.4%. NO way can that be true! MSNBC said that’s a bigger (and more decisive) margin than Bush’s victory over John Kerry in 2004! Bush 50.7%, Kerry 48.2%. Voter Fraud! We TeaPublicans spent billions to get that guy defeated! We had our Fox News, every AM radio station, every Chamber of Commerce and every Church in America blasting him 24 hrs a day…and you are telling me we still lost? Impossible! Well, either you’re closing your eyes to a situation you do not wish to acknowledge or you are not aware of the caliber of disaster indicated by the presence of obama as president! Ya got trouble, my friends, right here, I say, trouble right here in America!

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