11/06/13 - Wednesday's Topical Currents is with University of Illinois Communications professor Robert McChesney, co-author of DOLLAROCRACY. Can changes in our political system be made to take back control of what the authors call “the favored few?” What is big money’s influence on journalism? Does it affect election outcomes?
Hundreds of Florida Democrats fawned over former Gov. Charlie Crist this weekend at their annual conference as the onetime "Reagan Republican" campaigned relentlessly, receiving a hero's welcome more than a week before he officially announces his candidacy for governor.
The Florida Democratic Party's conference gave Crist, who wasn't an official speaker, a platform to do what he seems to love best --- pose for photographs, whisper words of encouragement and linger long enough with admirers to create a logjam wherever he went.
Monroe County, and four other Florida counties, have begun early voting for the August 14th primary. All five are protected by the 1965 Voting Rights Act. This means that any new voting law there must be cleared by the federal government.
Last year, state lawmakers passed a law reducing the number of early voting days.
“Until this year, the state has refrained from implementing those changes statewide until it had pre-clearance to do so in the five covered counties,” explains Michael Masinter, a law professor at Nova Southeastern University.
Next Tuesday's primary will be the first election since redistricting under anti-gerrymandering rules changed all of the political maps. The process made, changed or destroyed some political careers in the Florida Legislature, and not every one is sure the redistricting process accomplished its goals.