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Figuring Out Who to Vote For

August 12, 2012

UPDATE:  ELECTION RESULTS CAN BE VIEWED HERE

It’s less than two days to the August 14 primary, and I’m still trying to learn enough about the candidates to make an informed choice.  I’m talking here about the Democratic primary (and mostly Miami-Dade).  The Republicans are all basically hopeless—it’ll be a cold day in hell before one of them gets my vote.

The choice gets harder as you go down the ballot because generally you know less about the candidates for the more obscure local offices—especially as a newcomer to the area.  You can find some help in the endorsements by the newspapers.  The Miami Herald’s are here and here. The Sun-Sentinel is still working on it at this writing.   Update:  The Sun-Sentinel’s endorsements for local offices in Broward are now available here.

Gay voters can find guidance here.

Here’s a list of the top 5 local candidates to avoid at all cost.  And if you want to know where some of the mysterious PAC money for the campaign is coming from, check out this article in the Miami New Times blog.

Daily Kos has a great article on all races for all the Florida districts in the US House of Representatives, explaining which are potentially in play in the November election.

For the US House of Representatives, District 23 and 27 are uncontested in the primary.  In 23 Debbie Wasserman Schultz is the incumbent as well as Chair of the DNC.  In 27 Manny Yevancey will be going up against Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in the general election.  In District 25 there is no Democratic candidate, so Republican Mario Diaz-Balart will have a free ride—which is a real shame.

In District 24, which is my district, incumbent Frederica Wilson faces challenger Rudolph Moise, a Haitian-American osteopath.  Wilson is noted more for her hats than her legislative accomplishments, but she has a good voting record on important issues and it’s hard to see a good reason for replacing her.

The more important race is for District 26 where Joe Garcia and Gloria Romero Roses are vying to challenge the loathsome Republican incumbent David Rivera in November.  The district has become more competitive for Democrats due to redistricting, so the key question may be who can run the best race.  The Herald has endorsed Romero Roses.

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State Senate District Map

For the State Senate, the only real primary race is in District 39, which includes the Keys and most of the Everglades as well as the Homestead area and a weird finger of territory that snakes through Little Havana into Midtown Miami.  (Wonder how that one passed the redistricting rules.)  The nomination race there is really between Dwight Bullard and Ron Saunders, both incumbent state representatives.  The Herald has endorsed Saunders, but both seem to be viable candidates.

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State Representative District Map

When you get to the State Representative districts, it gets more complicated.  To make it simple, here are the Herald’s endorsements for the districts with more than one candidate:  District 100, Joseph Gibbons; District 102, Sharon Pritchett; District 107, Barbara Watson; District 108, Alix Desulme; District 109, Cynthia Stafford; District 112 , Jose Javier Rodriguez; District 113, Mark Weithorn; District 117, Carmen Morris.

For the County Commision, there’s an interesting race for District 1, where Miami Gardens Mayor Shirley Gibson is running against incumbent Barbara Jordan, who has proven to be pretty much a disaster.  It should be a no-brainer, except for Gibson’s acceptance of the endorsement of the Christian Family Coalition, a hateful anti-gay group.  I don’t live in the district, but if I did, that would make it a difficult choice.

Finally, there’s the race for the State Attorney between incumbent Katherine Fernandez Rundle and defense attorney Roderick Vereen.  The Herald has endorsed Fernandez Rundle, and she seems to have done a good job.

Whew, that’s enough to give me a headache!  And the really important stuff will happen in November!

From → Politics

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