Showing posts with label elections. Show all posts
Showing posts with label elections. Show all posts

Monday, March 27, 2017

Many Florida voters still undecided about potential field in 2018 gubernatorial race

L-R: Andrew Gillum, John Morgan, Patrick Murphy, Mike Huckabee, Adam Putnam
The results of a new Saint Leo University Polling Institute survey showed that many Florida voters remain undecided about the announced and potential candidates in the 2018 gubernatorial election.

Democratic respondents were asked to choose from a list of names a candidate they would support if the party primary for the governor was being held that day. “I don’t know” was the most frequent answer with 35.5 percent of responses.

Former Congressman Patrick Murphy, who opposed U.S. Senator Marco Rubio in the most recent election, came in next with 20.2 percent. Though Murphy was elected to Congress in 2012 and 2014, Frank Orlando, political scientist and director of the Saint Leo University Polling Institute, said it was the unsuccessful race against Rubio that gave Murphy enough name recognition statewide to be named so often by Democrats taking the survey.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Losses continue for alumni ex-lawmakers who ignored attacks on FAMU

Florida A&M University received poor representation from its alumni who served in the Florida Legislature between 2015 and 2016.

In 2015, FAMU lost control of a multi-million dollar college budget after 28 years and saw its alumni become a minority in the 11 appointed university Board of Trustees seats. But the six FAMU alumni who held seats in the legislature at that time simply ignored those attacks against the university.

Four of those individuals are now ex-lawmakers who have taken some big losses since leaving the state capitol.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Student Senate launches apparent attempt to return Smith to president’s chair Bruno won

On Wednesday, Justin Bruno took office as FAMU Student Government Association (SGA) president nearly 11 months after students voted to elect him to that job. The FAMU Board of Trustees (BOT) directory was also updated to show that Bruno is a member of that body.

Jaylen Smith is now in the seat he was originally supposed to be in since May, the Student Senate presidency. He served as interim SGA President for about seven months due to a legal battle over the Spring 2016 election results and the failure of SGA officials to move quickly to schedule a new election.

But it now looks like some of Smith’s fellow senators are moving to get him back into the seat that Bruno won.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Bruno takes office as FAMU SGA president

Nearly 11 months after Florida A&M University students voted to elect him as their top leader, Justin Bruno has at long last taken office. On Wednesday, he was officially declared the Student Government Association (SGA) president for the 2016-2017 year.

He and his vice-president, Devin Harrison, will serve until May. Harrison will run to succeed Bruno in February.

Back on February 16, 2016 Bruno and Harrison won the positions of SGA president and vice-president by 163 votes. They received 1,366 to the 1,203 votes of the Victor Chrispin/Pernell Mitchell ticket.

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

FAMU down to four alumni lawmakers in Florida Legislature

Florida A&M University has gone from having six alumni in the Florida Legislature to just four.

The FAMU graduates who will serve during the 2017 session are: Rep. Ramon Alexander (D-Tallahassee), Rep. Kamia L. Brown (D-Ocoee), Sen. Bobby Powell (D-West Palm Beach), and Rep. Shevrin Jones (D-West Park).

Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Naples) attended FAMU from 1996 to 1999 but transferred to Florida State University (FSU) to finish his bachelor’s degree.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Committeeman election loss leaves Bullard ineligible for Fla. Democratic Party chair race

Four days after the presidential election, the managing editor of The Miami New Times ran an opinion column entitled “The Florida Democratic Party Is a Damn Disgrace.” It included a comment that former state Sen. Dwight Bullard made about the state of the Florida party:

“There needs to be a real shakeup internally from top down, bottom up, and I say that as a local party chair,” Bullard said. “At the end of the day, there needs to be a more deliberate game plan on the message.”

Bullard later confirmed that he wanted to seek the chair position for the Florida Democratic Party. But he is ineligible to run after failing to win a county-level party office, which is a requirement for state chair candidates.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

1998: Huckabee wins 48% of votes by African Americans in Arkansas gubernatorial race

Gov. Mike Huckabee campaigns at a Baptist church in S.C. in 2015
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is currently #1 in the field of potential contenders for the Republican gubernatorial nomination in Florida. A Saint Leo University poll had him at 31.5 percent.

If Huckabee is nominated, he would likely continue to actively seek the support of African American voters like he has done since his political career in Arkansas. Back in 1998, Huckabee won 48 percent of the votes cast by African Americans in his Arkansas gubernatorial general election race against Democrat Bill Bristow.  

Huckabee also made numerous efforts to reach out to African American voters during his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination in 2015, especially in South Carolina.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Gov’s race prospects should be asked if they’ll help FAMU alumni regain majority on BOT

L-R: Andrew Gillum, John Morgan, Gwen Graham, Mike Huckabee, and Adam Putnam
Last year, Florida A&M University alumni became a minority in the 11 appointed university Board of Trustees (BOT) seats. Alumni hold most of the appointed seats on the BOTs at the University of Florida and Florida State University.

The small number of FAMU alumni that the Florida Governor’s Office and Board of Governors (BOG) have chosen to appoint to the FAMU BOT is an insult. It suggests that FAMU doesn’t have as many alumni who are up to the task of leadership as UF and FSU.

FAMU National Alumni Association (NAA) President Gregory L. Clark and past NAA President Tommy Mitchell have spoken out publicly about the problem. But so far Gov. Rick Scott and the BOG haven’t announced any intention to correct it.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Levitt: “The Democratic Party must be taught to earn our votes”

Members of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus endorse Hillary Clinton in 2016
On November 16, 2016, the Orlando Sentinel published an op-ed by Florida A&M University College of Law Professor Jeremy I. Levitt about the results of the recent presidential election.

Levitt is urging African Americans to demand more from the Democratic Party in exchange for their votes.

From the op-ed: “African-Americans should give Donald Trump a chance”:

I’m an ardent critic of Donald J. Trump, but I realize that he will be the 45th president of the United States. He won; get over it. If you don't like him, do something about it: Join the anti-Trump protests around the country, help establish a "third way," or move to Canada. I've lived in Canada, and if "Jacques Frost" doesn't pinch you, Canada's ridiculously high income and sales taxes — together with a cruel currency-exchange rate and nice-nasty culture — may have you running south for the wall-free border.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

FAMU College of Law alumna elected judge in Brevard County

By Robin Holmes
FAMU College of Law

Kelly McCormack Ingram, a 2008 graduate of Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) College of Law, has been elected Brevard County judge in Group 2. Ingram was elected during the general election on Nov. 8.

“The reason I ran for judge is that I want to be in position to do what’s right,” said Ingram, who will be assigned to the misdemeanor criminal court.

Friday, December 09, 2016

Graham might face primary battle in race for Democratic gubernatorial nomination

U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham still hasn’t officially announced a decision about whether she will seek the Democratic nomination for the Florida governorship in 2018. But some both inside and outside of the party are already treating her like she’s the frontrunner.

Back during a Hillary Clinton campaign rally in Tallahassee on November 7, U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden made encouraging remarks about the possibility of Graham winning the Governor’s Mansion. Her father, Bob Graham, served as the governor of Florida from 1979 to 1987.

“Gwen Graham, great congresswoman who I predict may be your next governor down here,” Biden said.

The Republican Governors Association also appears to see her as the likely Democratic nominee. Yesterday, it released a statement taking jabs at her on the issue of “transparency.”

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

FLBC was more concerned about pursuing big donors than defending FAMU

Tim Ryan, who is challenging Nancy Pelosi for the minority leader position in the U.S. House of Representatives, recently made a spot on comment about a big reason why the Democratic Party did poorly in the 2016 elections.

“The public sees Democrats … as being elite and more concerned with the donor class than we are with them,” Ryan said.

That’s certainly true for the Florida Democratic Party, which has had a lack of leadership for years. The state of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus (FLBC) during the 2014-2016 term reflected that problem.

The FLBC was once one of the most consistent sources of advocacy that Florida A&M University had. But in the 2014-2016 term the group simply ignored a number of attacks against the university.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Williams, Bullard end 2016 with election losses

Today, the Florida Legislature will officially begin its 2016-2018 term. Former Rep. Alan Williams and former Sen. Dwight Bullard, both alumni of Florida A&M University, will not be among those who take the oath of office today.

Williams represented House District 8 for eight years between 2008 and 2016. Facing term limits, he ran for Leon County Supervisor of Elections this year but lost to Mark Earley. Earley served as voting systems manager under long-time Supervisor of Elections Ion Sancho, who endorsed his candidacy.

Bullard held the District 39 Senate seat from 2012 to 2016 and ran for the District 40 Senate seat after the district maps were redrawn. He lost to state Rep. Frank Artiles, a Republican.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Democratic voters give cold shoulder to Joyner, Jones’ chosen successors

Sen. Arthenia Joyner and Rep. Mia Jones, who are alumni of Florida A&M University, are both leaving the Florida Legislature this year due to term limits. They both publicly backed chosen successors for their seats during the 2016 Democratic primaries, but Democratic voters gave cold shoulders to those endorsements.

Joyner endorsed state Rep. Ed Narain for the District 19 Senate seat she currently holds. Narain is the current chairman of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus (FLBC).

But state Rep. Daryl Rouson defeated Narain in the Democratic primary and won the Senate seat.

Jones endorsed Leslie Jean-Bart to replace her in House District 14, but Jean-Bart lost the Democratic primary to now state Rep.-elect Kimberly Daniels.

Last year, Jones expressed interest in entering the Democratic primary in the redrawn Fifth Congressional District of Florida but stayed out when incumbent U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown decided to seek reelection. Brown lost the Democratic primary to now U.S. Rep. Alfred “Al” Lawson, a FAMU alumnus.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Lawson, Alexander cruise to big victories in Florida general election

Florida A&M University alumni Alfred “Al” Lawson and Ramon Alexander, both Democrats, are two of the big winners in 2016 Florida general election.

Lawson defeated Republican nominee Glo Smith in the Fifth Congressional District of Florida. With 247 of 266 precincts reporting, Lawson had 190,610 votes (64.1 percent) to Smith’s 106,628 votes (35.9 percent).

Alexander won the District 8 seat in the Florida House of Representatives that Lawson formerly held from 1992 through 2000. He did not face a Republican contender but did have write-in opposition.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

FAMU students encouraged to complete voter registration

As the presidential election rapidly approaches, Rattlers joined forces to host a Strike the Vote voter registration drive in an effort to ensure all Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University students are registered by Oct. 11.

During the drive, various FAMU and Tallahassee community members manned conveniently located tables across campus where they updated students’ registration information and registered many first time voters.

Participants of the Strike the Vote initiative included FAMU political science and history students, Student Government Association leaders, the Florida State University League of Women Voters, the League of Women Voters of Florida, and the School of Allied Health Sciences.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Al Lawson defeats 24-year incumbent Corrine Brown to win CD5 Democratic primary

Yesterday, Florida A&M University alumnus Alfred “Al” Lawson won the Democratic nomination for the Fifth Congressional District of Florida (CD5). He defeated 24-year incumbent U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, another graduate of FAMU.

With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Lawson had 48 percent to Brown’s 39 percent. A third Democratic candidate, LaShonda Holloway, had 13 percent.

Lawson won despite being vastly outspent by Brown. According to the Tallahassee Democrat, Brown’s “Aug. 10 campaign finance report showed $483,949 in total receipts, including $50,000 of her own money. Lawson raised $255,678 for his campaign, including $101,000 of his own.”

Alexander wins Democratic primary for Florida House District 8

Former Florida A&M University Student Body President Ramon Alexander beat three opponents to win the Democratic nomination for the Florida House of Representatives District 8. He finished with 39 percent of the votes.

Alexander is the national executive director of Distinguished Young Gentlemen of America, Inc. lead all the Democratic candidates in fundraising with a total of $210,723 as of August 25.

He graduated from the FAMU Development Research School and then earned a degree in political science and public administration from FAMU, serving as student body president during the 2005-2006 school year. Alexander formerly worked as the community & external affairs aide in the Tallahassee Mayor’s Office and a legislative intern in the Florida House of Representatives District 8 office for two years.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Lawson using TV push to reach CD5 voters

Today is decision day in the Democratic primary for the new Fifth Congressional District of Florida (CD5). Polls have shown former Florida Senate Democratic Leader Alfred “Al” Lawson running neck-and-neck with incumbent U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown. Both are graduates of FAMU.

During his tenure in the Florida Legislature Lawson is directly responsible for over a $500 million (a half billion) dollars in new construction and renovation projects at FAMU, including the Al Lawson Multipurpose Teaching Gym that bears his name, the recent renovation of Tucker Hall, and the construction of the new Pharmacy Building and Pharmacy phase II, construction of the School of Journalism building, and all three phases of SBI.

CD5 formerly ran north-south from Duval County to Orange County. But the new CD5 map approved by the Florida Supreme Court in 2015 runs from Duval to Gadsden Counties. CD5 remains a minority-access seat with about 45 percent black voters. 

On August 16th, Lawson picked up the endorsement of the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville,  Brown's hometown newspaper and the largest paper in the new congressional district.    

Florida Politics reports that “Brown, unlike Lawson, has not been on TV in Jacksonville.”

Lawson has been running a TV ad in Jacksonville and other parts of the district that introduces him to voters. It starts with his early life in Gadsden County and goes on to his entry into small business ownership and politics.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Florida Times-Union of Jacksonville endorses Al Lawson’s bid to oust Corrine Brown

On Tuesday afternoon, the Florida TimesUnion editorial board announced its decision to endorse Florida A&M University alumnus and former Florida Senate Minority Leader Alfred “Al” Lawson in the race for the Fifth Congressional District of Florida (CD5) seat.

The Jacksonville-based newspaper chose to support him over incumbent U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, who lives in the city. She is also a graduate of FAMU.

“To receive the endorsement from the biggest publication in Jacksonville means so much to me. It shows that the city is ready for a leader they can trust,” Lawson said. “I am ready to go to Washington and work hard for the Bold City.”