Report on Israel "Reefa" Hernandez's Death Filed With UN Committee Against Torture

Categories: Politicks

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Photo by Swampdog
Local activists hope to bring the 2013 death of teenager Israel "Reefa" Hernandez at the hands of Miami Beach Police to the attention of the United Nations Committee Against Torture. The Dream Defenders and the Community Justice Project of Florida Legal Services have filed a report with the UN in time for the committee's 53rd meeting next month in Switzerland alleging that Hernandez's death was the result of unchecked police brutality.

Reefa's death will be filed along with inquests into the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. Activists are hopeful the UN might take up the issue, considering the Committee Against Torture has previously brought up concerns about racial profiling, police brutality, and the use of Tasers in the U.S., which the country must address at the meeting.

See also: Israel "Reefa" Hernandez Died From Tasering, Not Drugs Or Excited Delirium

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Preservationists Cry Foul as County Commission Considers Allowing Cities More Autonomy

Categories: Politicks

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It's no secret Miami is experiencing another condo boom. Construction cranes once again screech and pivot over downtown. Towers that were stalled in 2009 are now complete. We are quickly running out of vacant lots to build on.

So it's little wonder that lawmakers are looking for solutions. Today, county Commissioner Sally Heyman is introducing an ordinance that would allow cities to opt out of Miami-Dade's Historical Preservation Board and assert greater control over local development.

Preservationists, however, are crying foul. They say the ordinance is a gift to developers who will steer small town councils to tear down historical buildings in favor of fancy new condo towers.

See also: Miami Beach Community Church Controversy: Developer Donated $500,000 Before Key Vote

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Those New Anti-Medical Marijuana Ads Claiming Felons Could Sell Weed Are Ludicrous

Categories: Politicks

via YouTube
Would Amendment 2 -- Florida's bid to legalize medical marijuana on this November's ballot -- really let convicted felons sell pot with no penalties? That's what a new statewide ad urging voters to turn against the proposition claims, with an ominous voice intoning that "Even felons and drug dealers could be caregivers."

Of course that's not really true. Could is the operative word, because the amendment gives legislators six months to set rules on how medical pot would actually work. If it's not already obvious that GOP-controlled Tallahassee isn't likely to leave such glaring loopholes for caregivers, a group headed by a former Florida House speaker has released a proposed set of guidelines on how to regulate the drug.

See also: Medical Marijuana Backer John Morgan Slammed For Appealing To Potheads

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Ex-Miami Mayor Xavier Suarez Considering Bid Against Gimenez For County Mayor

Categories: Politicks

photo of Xavier Suarez by Jonathan Postal; Carlos Gimenez photo via County Mayor's Office
The last time Xavier Suarez occupied a mayor's office, it didn't end so well. His second term as Miami mayor lasted just 111 days in 1997 before an absentee ballot scandal cost him his seat and a spate of bizarre behavior earned him the lasting nickname "Mayor Loco."

But Suarez is now pondering another bid -- this time at County Hall. The county commissioner says he's dissatisfied with Mayor Carlos Gimenez and believes voters are as well. "It's no secret I'm not satisfied with the progress of reform," Suarez tells Riptide. "But I'm about a year away from any decision on whether to run."

See also: Xavier Suarez: Don't Call Him Loco

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George W. Bush: Jeb "Wants to Be President"

Categories: Politicks

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What do you think Jeb Bush is more irked at his big brother George W. for right now: spilling the beans on his barely concealed presidential aspirations or reminding people that they're brothers?

In a new interview with Fox News (of course) the second President Bush revealed that he's pretty sure Jebbers wants to be the third President Bush.

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Democrats Blast Scott's "Sexist" Wedding Dress Ad, but It Wasn't Even Original

Categories: Politicks

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Yesterday we noted that a pro-Rick Scott web ad that parodied Say Yes to the Dress was so insulting to the intelligence of young female voters that we didn't feel the need to point it out, but, hey, Florida Democratic Party Chair Allison Tant decided it need to be said.

Of course, lost in the hullabaloo is the fact that the College Republicans National Committee also posted five other nearly identical ads supporting five other Republican gubernatorial candidates. It's just Rick Scott's that got the most attention.

See also: Rick Scott Ad Parodies Say Yes to the Dress, Very Notion of Serious Political Advertising

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Studies Confirm Florida Had Longest Election Day Wait Times in 2012

Categories: Politicks

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Just in time for Floridians to head to the polls again next month, two new studies have confirmed that wait times at the polls in Florida during the 2012 election were, frankly, a god damned embarrassment and a level of incompetence that undermined the very values of our great nation.

Well, at least they confirmed that Floridians had by far the longest average time in line to vote.

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Ex-Miami Beach Candidate Steve Berke's Grease Pot Parody Yanked From YouTube

Categories: Politicks

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Courtesy of video producers
Two-time Miami Beach mayoral candidate Steve Berke had himself a pro-medical marijuana parody hit on YouTube with "You're the Law that I Want (Yes on 2)." Set to the song "You're the One That I Want" from the musical Grease, Berke and his crew dance and sing while urging Florida voters to yes on Amendment 2, which would legalize medical marijuana.

The four-minute parody racked up 300,000 views and was featured on Comedy Central, Buzzfeed, and the Huffington Post, according to its producers. But it's been pulled by the site, after the Warner/Chappell music company claimed it violated its copyright.

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

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Rick Scott Ad Parodies Say Yes to the Dress, Very Notion of Serious Political Advertising

Categories: Politicks

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Perhaps the only thing with less integrity on television than reality TV is political advertising. Both twist facts into overly dramatic fake drama, but one genre is meant for brain-dead entertainment and the other is meant to help shape the future of our democracy.

So it's a little ironic that the College Republican National Committee has produced a pro-Rick Scott ad that parodies reality TV mainstay Say Yes to the Dress. The ad, though, quickly goes from slightly ironic to downright surreal.

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Ana Alliegro Rails Against Joe Garcia From Her House Arrest

Categories: Politicks

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Alliegro with her former boss David Rivera
Ana Alliegro, the former David Rivera campaign manager and "Conservative Bad Girl" currently serving six months house arrest for her part in a fake candidate scheme, posted a long statement on her Facebook page. While admitting that some of her actions "were wrong and illegal," she also excoriates Rivera's former opponent: incumbent Democratic congressman Joe Garcia.

Garcia's former campaign manager is now at the center of an investigation for propping up a phony Republican candidate in 2010, much as Alliegro did in the Democratic primary. "It is clear to me and others that I was prosecuted for the same exact actions in which current Congressman Joe Garcia's campaign was engaged a whole two years prior; the illegal recruitment and financing of a straw candidate in a general election," Alliegro wrote.

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