A prominent Senate Democrat is trying to federalize election rules in a way that would make it illegal to force voters to wait more than an hour to vote.
U. S. Sen. Barbara Boxer filed her bill -- called the LINE Act -- on Thursday. If it passes, states would have to come into compliance before the next federal election. That would involve applying formulas that determine how many voting machines and poll workers have to be available for the expected number of voters.
A sponsor of the bill to bring back spoken prayer, Commissioner Jose "Pepe" Diaz, called it a matter of "freedom of speech," while Commissioner Sally Heyman, part of the trio opposed to the measure, said it was "unfair to members of the community to be subjected to a religious point of view." Since 2004, the commission has opened its meetings with a moment of silence during which commissioners and the public could do as they pleased.
State elections chief Ken Detzner told the Senate Ethics and Elections Committee on Tuesday that it was five "underperforming" counties that caused the delays in reporting the Florida vote count after the Nov. 6 election.
Chairman Jack Latvala (R-Clearwater) said he'll call for the elections supervisors from Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, St. Lucie and Lee counties to testify before his committee next month. "There's enough blame to go around," Latvala said.
A bill that should help fix Florida's python problem is slipping out of the hands of lawmakers in Washington.
U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta, has been trying to get legislation passed that would broaden a ban on invasive species in the U.S. In effect, the bill would slow down a recent influx of invasive snakes taking over the Everglades in Florida.
The agendas probably say nothing about amends-making or damage control, but the mission is already clear as House and Senate elections committees begin hearings today in Tallahassee on overhauling Florida's elections system.