Politics

Florida Sugar
6:24 am
Fri October 19, 2012

Evaporated Cane Juice: Sugar In Disguise?

If you look very closely, you'll see "evaporated cane juice" in the ingredients list on this yogurt. A California woman is suing the Chobani yogurt company over its use of the term.
Karen Castillo Farfán NPR

Originally published on Thu October 18, 2012 7:08 pm

If you're one of those people who vigilantly checks the ingredient list of the things you buy at the grocery store, you may have already seen this: Some food products now contain something called "evaporated cane juice." It can be found in yogurt, fruit juices and lemonades.

So what exactly is evaporated cane juice? Well, it depends on whom you ask. We spoke with a few folks outside our local grocery store, and many of them were confused. Take a listen:

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Taxes
6:23 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

How Strict New Tax Rules Could Affect Florida

Opponents of Amendment 3 say restricting how much money the state can bring in will hurt Floridians.
401(K) 2012/ Flickr

Amendment 3 on Florida’s ballot this year, if passed, will change how the state figures out how much money it can collect in taxes.

Opponents all over the state, however, say this one change could lead to massive cuts in state services such as health care and education.

How Amendment Three Works

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The Florida Supreme Court
5:34 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Debate: Will Amendment 5 Politicize Florida's Highest Court?

Some say Amendment 5 will make the Florida Supreme Court less impartial.
Fammy/ Flickr

In 2011, the Florida Legislature set out to restructure the Florida Supreme Court.

Even though that effort failed, Republican Lawmakers did get a proposal for big changes onto this year’s ballot.

However, some say this effort could politicize and change the face of Florida’s highest court.

Will New Rules Make Florida's Highest Court Less Impartial?

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Campaign Money
5:17 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Allen West Is Still Raising More Money Than Anyone Else In The House

Allen West is raising more money than anyone else in the House.
Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

U.S. Rep. Allen West, who is famous for his confrontational Tea Party politics, has been dominating this year in terms of fundraising.

He is not only out raising his opponent, Patrick Murphy, by leaps and bounds-- but he is raising more money than anyone else running for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The Washington Post recently profiled Romney's biggest company donor, which is a Philadelphia-based orthopedic clinic. They also included some of the big money raisers in the country right now. At the top of that list happens to West.

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Bill Nelson
3:34 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Bill Nelson: I Am Still 'Petrified' Of Florida's New Voting Law

Bill Nelson says he is still concerned about Florida's voting law.
nasa hq photo/ Flickr

This year's presidential election is getting closer and Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., still doesn't feel too good about the state's new voting law.

He stopped by the Miami Herald today to talk about his debate against his opponent, Connie Mack, last night. He talked about immigration and the Space Coast, among other things, but he also voiced how he feels about Florida's new voting law.

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Politics
12:55 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

A Romney-Ryan Rally At A New Deal Relic

FDR Built That: Daytona Beach's Bandshell
Joe Shlabotnik on flickr

When Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan rally in Daytona Beach Friday night -- and somebody should tell them this right away -- they'll be worshipping at a temple of deficit spending, Keynesian economics and executive power unconstrained.

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Dispatches
11:48 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Dispatch: The Server And The Cat

Patti Wilde and her bar mate Larry
YouTube Screenshot

During the previous debate, our Dispatches from the Swing State team met an interesting character in a Key West pub -- a local server named Patti Wilde who is originally from Cincinnati and is something of a local celebrity.

Or, as she explains it, "I mean, I used to be. I've been here 30 years so they go, 'oh, Cincinnati Patti's here.' But now they don't do that anymore. They go, 'Larry!'"

"Larry" is Patti Wilde's cat -- a very large cat that sits calmly on the bar stool wherever she goes.

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Political Fundraising
11:26 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Host Of Romney's '47-Percent' Fundraiser Is Set To Host Paul Ryan

A host of one of Romney's controversial fundraising dinners is going to host another event in Boca Raton for the campaign.
Talk Radio News Service/ Flickr

Boca Raton's Marc Leder, who is best known for hosting a dinner earlier this year in which presidential candidate Mitt Romney said 47 percent of people will vote for Obama because they are "dependent upon government," is going to hold yet another event this Friday at a country club in Boca Raton.

This fundraiser, however, will feature Romney's Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan.

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35,000 Have Cast Ballots in Miami Dade
9:48 am
Thu October 18, 2012

500,000 Floridians Have Already Voted

Absentee ballots are pouring in across Florida.
Vaguely Artistic Flickr/Creative Commons

Election Day is less than three weeks away, but half a million votes are already in in Florida.

The Miami Herald reports the heaviest voting is taking place in Miami Dade, Tampa Bay and along the I-4 corridor.

About 500,000 Floridians have already cast absentee ballots, and 1.8 million more have requested these ballots be mailed to them.

Heavy interest in the presidential race is believed to be behind the rush to vote so soon.

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Senate Debate
8:56 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Showdown At Nova: Bill Nelson, Connie Mack Mix It Up In First And Only Senate Debate

Mack, left, and Nelson debated at Nova Southeastern University
Credit candidate web sites

Fact checkers were up all night after Wednesday's Senate debate between Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson and his Republican challenger, U. S. Connie Mack. Facts and truth were relative things, many agreed, during the one and only chance Florida voters will have to see the candidates debate.

Mack is enjoying a bounceback after trailing in the polls for several weeks and the debate at Nova  Southeastern University was animated with a few excursions into testy.

Topics included Cuba, foreign policy, health care and the candidates' respective records. 

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Absentee Ballot Challenge
7:55 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Judge Rejects Absentee Ballot Challenge In Miami-Dade Democratic House Race

On to November: Watson keeps her primary win over Julien.
candidate web site photos

State Rep. Barbara Watson will keep her 13-vote Democratic primary win over fellow Rep. John Patrick Julien. A Tallahassee judge ruled Wednesday that, despite some suspicious signatures on several absentee ballots cast for Watson, there wasn't enough evidence to overturn the result.

As Julien considers his options, Watson is preparing for the general election which she is likely to win. Heavily Democratic District 107 produced only a write-in candidate to oppose her.

Politics
6:22 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

'Lynn, Who?': Debate Puts Small Boca Raton University On The Map

Lynn University's official Debate t-shirt
C. DiMattei

If you’re a small, private university with a less-than-stellar reputation, what’s a good way to boost your profile?

For Lynn University it was a no-brainer: Host one of the most important events in American politics.

"We've been waiting for this moment for a long time," says Dr. Kevin Ross, Lynn University's president.

The “moment” arrives on Monday, when President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney arrive on Lynn’s Boca Raton campus for the third and final presidential debate before Election Day.

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Politics
6:15 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Analyst: Rick Scott Begins Unofficial Reelection Bid With Focus On Teachers

Governor Scott hears from teachers at Southwest Miami High.
FLGOVSCOTT/Flickr

Gov. Rick Scott is trying to appease educators.

They didn’t like it when he chopped $1.3 billion in education funding from the state budget.

They liked it even less when he called for an expansion of charter schools and other alternatives to traditional public schools.

So, while most people are focused on the November ballot, USF Political Scientist Seth McKee says Scott appears to be ramping up his 2014 reelection campaign by extending an olive branch to teachers.

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Ballot Measures
5:22 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Amendment 6: Right To Privacy Or Parental Rights?

The Archdiocese of Miami is funding a campaign to pass Amendment 6, because they say they want to store parental rights in abortion matters.
Ashley Lopez WLRN

One of the constitutional amendments on the ballot this November takes on the controversial and politically charged issue of abortion.

Amendment 6, if passed, would prohibit public funding for abortions in the state, but it would also take away a right to privacy explicitly contained in Florida’s Constitution.

This has women’s rights activists in the state up in arms over concerns that this could be the beginning of greater abortion restrictions.

A Right To Privacy

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Simón Bolivar's Hair
3:35 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Floridian Sues Venezuela To Regain His Lock Of Liberator Simón Bolívar 's Hair

Thanks to the disputed lock of hair, we're pretty sure this is what Simon Bolivar looked like.

Florida resident Ricardo Devengoechea had what the Venezuelans needed: an actual lock of Simón Bolivar's hair that could be used to authenticate the bones stashed in Caracas' National Pantheon.  Reportedly, he lent them the hair, the match was made and Bolívar's certified skull was used to make the  digital facial image that you see on this page.

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