Florida City Wants to Ban Smoking Medical Marijuana Before It's Even Legalized

Categories: Politicks

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Photo by Laurie Avacado via Wikimedia Commons | CC2.0
Floridians may be set to head to the polls in November to legalize medical marijuana, but could individual cities still ban smoking medical pot anyway? Bonita Springs, Florida, is going to try and is already drafting an ordinance banning smoking in public.

Which is slightly funny because Bonita Springs' most famous store is a fishing shop called Master Bait and Tackle (get it?), and its tourist stores sell a lot of "Bonita Springs: a drinking town with a fishing problem" shirts, but apparently medical pot is a bridge too far.

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Miami-Dade County Commission Likely To Advance Transgender Protections Today

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In Miami-Dade, transgender residents today have zero legal protection against being fired or discriminated against by their county government. That incredible fact remains true in 2014 largely because of one county commissioner and one conservative group hell-bent on keeping that basic human protection off the books.

Well, with that right-wing commissioner -- Lynda Bell -- now on the way out of County Hall after an electoral defeat last month, the County Commission will try again today to get the ball rolling on a transgender protection clause.

Update: The commission passed the transgendered protection this afternoon. It will now head to committee for a second vote.

See also: The Shiny, Happy Faces of Transgender Discrimination in Miami-Dade County

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Here's a Pro-Medical Marijuana Grease Parody Starring a Former Miami Beach Mayoral Candidate

Categories: Politicks

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Comedian-turned-political-rabble-rouser Steve Berke may have lost his latest bid for Miami Beach mayor, but he hasn't given up on spreading the message of his pet political project: legalized pot.

Berke is back with a stab at viral video campaigning with a pro-medical marijuana parody of "You're The One That I Want" from Grease. He even apparently tracked down the original funhouse set used in the 1978 film.

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Ethics Commission on David Rivera's Shenanigans: "We're Over It"

Categories: Politicks

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It's not been a good week for troubled ex-congressman David Rivera. First, a former confidant was sentenced to a slap on the wrist for her role in running a puppet primary candidate against Rivera's political rival Joe Garcia, with everyone suspecting that when he's eventually charged he'll take the blunt of the blame (and punishment).

Now the Florida Commission on Ethics, which is handling an entirely different and unrelated set of allegations against Rivera, has basically said they've had enough of him.

See also: Ana Alliegro Gets Light Sentence for Role in David Rivera Scandal

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Ana Alliegro Gets Light Sentence for Role in David Rivera Scandal

Categories: Politicks

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"Conservative bad girl" Ana Alliegro was sentenced to not much more than a slap on the wrist today for her role in the David Rivera campaign corruption scandal. After pleading guilty, she'll get off with time served and six months of house arrest followed by two years of supervised release. Prosecutors had wanted at least a year in jail for Alliegro.

However Judge Robert Scola was adamant in his belief that former Rep. David Rivera was more to blame for the fiasco. Of course, Rivera has not yet been charged with anything.

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IRS Investigating Troubled City of North Miami, Requests Payroll Records

Categories: Politicks

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Photo by MBisanz via Wikipedia Commons
The Internal Revenue Service is investigating the City of North Miami and has requested reams of documents related to the town's payroll and social security payments. In a letter addressed to the city manager, later published on Scribd by Commissioner Scott Galvin, the agency informs the city -- which has been plagued with numerous recent scandals, including the previous mayor getting indicted this May -- that it must turn over records from 2012 pertaining to 20 individuals and eight city vendors.

Galvin tells Riptide that so far it isn't clear exactly what spurred the investigation. "The IRS is not laying all their cards on the table, which is understandable," he says.

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Tampa Bay Times Poll Finds Scott Leading Crist by Five, but Results Are Weird

Categories: Politicks

via Rick Scott's Facebook
It's amazing what $25.6 million can buy you these days. A condo in South Beach. A season of CC Sabathia's pitching services. Or if you're Rick Scott, a five-point lead in a hotly contested governor's race. That's what a new poll out this morning from the Tampa Bay Times finds after Scott's record early TV ad binge against Charlie Crist.

But there's one seriously weird result in Tampa's poll, which is one of the first non-GOP sponsored surveys to find Scott with such a wide lead. Namely, the same poll finds Crist with a sizable lead among independents -- usually a sound sign in deeply purple Florida that a candidate is headed to victory.

See also: 26 Percent of Floridians Still Can't Decide Who's Slightly Less Horrible, Scott or Crist

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26 Percent of Floridians Still Can't Decide Who's Slightly Less Horrible, Scott or Crist

Categories: Politicks

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In a race between two known devils, Floridians can't seem to figure out which one is better.

A new poll from Gravis Marketing shows that Floridians are split dead even between who they'd prefer as governor. Rick Scott or Charlie Crist sit at exactly 37 percent each. Perhaps the bigger news is that 26 percent of Floridians still have not made up their mind either way.

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Florida Primary Voter Turnout Lowest Its Been in 16 Years

Categories: Politicks

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... but apparently you didn't.
Just 17.5 percent of Florida's registered voters bothered to turn out for Florida's primary election on Tuesday. That's the lowest turnout in a state-wide election in the state in 16 years. The last time voter turnout was lower was when only 16.6 percent of Floridians bothered to turn out for the 1998 primary election.

Voter turn out was down from about 22 percent from 2010's midterm election primary.

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Miami-Dade Primary Election Results: Live-Blog

Categories: Politicks

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Photo by Kyle Munzenrieder
Do you feel that excitement? The excitement only a midterm primary election can bring?

OK, sure, both of the top-of-the-ticket races for each party's gubernatorial nominee may be foregone conclusions, but there were lots of interesting races going on elsewhere on the ballot in Miami-Dade. That includes legislative primaries, the next mayor of North Miami, a decisive county commission race, and whether or not Miami voters will allow the construction of that giant hairpin-shaped observational tower.

Join us as we live blog the election results. For more prattling you can also follow us on Twitter at @MiamiNewTimes and @Munzenrieder.

RACES TO WATCH
Republican Governor Nominee:
Rick Scott
Democratic Governor Nominee: Charlie Crist

Democratic Attorney General Nominee: George Sheldon

Republican Congressional Primary, District 26: Carlos Curbelo (Will face Rep. Joe Garcia in Nov.)

Miami-Dade Commission - District 8: Daniella Levine Cava

North Miami Mayor: Runoff between Kevin Burns and Smith Josephy

Miami Bayside/SkyRise ballot question: Approved

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