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Scott votes. For whom? Won’t say

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012 by John Kennedy

Gov. Rick Scott declined to say who he voted for in Florida’s Republican presidential primary, after casting his ballot early Tuesday at a community center a couple blocks from the Governor’s Mansion.

Florida’s chief executive, who had declined to endorse or campaign with any of the contenders in the race, continued to keep his distance.

“It’s a secret ballot, fortunately,” Scott said.

He acknowledged though, his favorite had “less than 10 letters in their last name,” a standard that covers the field.


Florida GOP shrinking Democrats’ voter margin

Friday, January 6th, 2012 by John Kennedy

Florida Republicans are narrowing their voter registration gap with Democrats as presidential primary season opens.

The state party said Friday that in December, there were 502,861 more registered Democrats than Republicans in Florida, a roughly 4.5 million to 4 million separation. But the margin is down from a 580,666 difference when 2011 opened — a 77,805 shift in the GOP’s favor.

Earlier this week was the deadline for Republicans to register to vote in Florida’s Jan. 31 primary, the nation’s largest, early nominating contest. The Florida Division of Elections said it will be Jan. 17 before it releases final voter totals for the primary.

“RPOF is working at the grassroots level to bring new voters, Democrats, and independent voters into our party,” said Chairman Lenny Curry. “We are also letting former Republicans know we want them to come back and join us to get Florida and the nation back on the path to prosperity.”



ACLU wants Senate hearings on voter law before Jan. 31 prez primary

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011 by John Kennedy

The ACLU of Florida, already suing to overturn the state’s new voting law, urged a Senate panel Wednesday to hold its planned hearing on the measure — preferably before the state’s Jan. 31 presidential primary.

Illinois Democrat Richard Durbin said Tuesday that his Senate subcommittee will hold a ”field hearing” in Florida on the voting standards approved earlier this year by the Republican-ruled Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott.

The state’s senior senator, Democrat Bill Nelson, called for Durbin to stage the hearing, saying the new measure is designed to blunt Democratic turnout in next year’s presidential election – by imposing stricter limits on third-party groups that register voters and shortening the number of days available for early voting.

 Florida is among 14 Republican-ruled states where new voting laws have been approved that Democrats and allied groups say are motivated by presidential politics.

 ”We agree with your assessment that these new restrictions will disenfranchise a great number of Floridians including young, disabled and lower income voters,” ACLU executive director Howard Simon wrote Durbin. “Moreover, these restrictions were intended to, and will, have a regressive impact on the voting rights of racial and language minority voters in violation of the Voting Rights Act.”

Simon said Durbin’s Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights should consider holding three hearings, in Fort Lauderdale, St. Petersburg, and Tallahassee — before the scheduled Jan. 31 primary.

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