Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Sep. 3: Political This N' That

By Sylvia Gurinsky

*The more one sees, the more evident it is that either Sen. John McCain and/or the Republican Party blundered badly with the selection of Sarah Palin as McCain's running mate. The governor of Alaska, who has no problem with the Second Amendment, seems to have a big problem with the First Amendment:

Take the worst nightmares of Spiro Agnew and Dick Cheney combined, and this is what you get.

With the likes of Elizabeth Dole, Kay Bailey Hutchison and others to choose from, why Sarah Palin? Why?

*I never got a chance to write about last week's primary, but a couple of observations:

-Concern about the new optical scan system for November's election. There were a couple of circumstances where ballot issues (including the Children's Trust measure in Miami-Dade County) were very difficult to find on those ballots. Also, filling out the ballot is a long and complicated process.

How about finding a cost-effective way to combine the best of touch-screens with a paper trail?

-A golden reason Florida needs to reinstate the runoff: The outcome of the election in State Senate District 31 (Full disclosure: My district.).

Eleanor Sobel, who once said that the organizers of the Ben Gamla charter school in Hollywood brought scrutiny on themselves with their Orthodox Jewish dress and who ran for the Senate less than a year after winning a seat on the Broward School Board, flooded mailboxes with postcards (Roughly 20 of the 60-plus cards from candidates in my family's house came from her.) and telephones with message after message after message - including one the day Tropical Storm Fay hit. Oy vey.

Ten years ago, she and second-place finisher Ken Gottleib would have gone to a runoff. Not now, thanks to the Florida Legislature, which abolished a measure that got the likes of Rubin Askew and Bob Graham into the Florida governor's mansion.

As you serve, Sen. Sobel, remember that 65 percent of your district didn't want you. You've got some work to do to win them over. Perhaps you and your Tallahassee colleagues can start by restoring the runoff.

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