Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Scams that could suppress votes reported in battleground states - UPI.com

Scams that could suppress votes reported in battleground states - UPI.com
WASHINGTON, Oct. 29 (UPI) -- Election officials in U.S. swing states have reported getting complaints of phony phone calls, fraudulent letters and other voter intimidation efforts.

Florida's State Department reported some voters were being targeted with fraudulent efforts meant to keep them home on Nov. 6, CBCNews.com reported.

Chris Cate, the department's communications director, said between 50 and 100 Floridians in at least 28 counties recently got letters telling them questions had been raised about their citizenship and right to vote. The letters, printed on phony letterhead from Supervisor of Elections Kathy Dent, told recipients to return voter eligibility forms within 15 days of receipt.

Cate also said a handful of voters have received calls during which they were told they could vote by phone, which is "not true whatsoever."

Similar complaints were reported in Virginia, another battleground state. Earlier this month, state election officials said they received complaints from voters who said they'd gotten phone calls telling them they could vote by phone, CBCNews.com said.


Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2012/10/29/States-Voters-report-intimidation-scams/UPI-23901351535194/#ixzz2AntMCSdX


Astronauts see superstorm Sandy from space station

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The superstorm that has been ravaging the East Coast is enormous, even when seen from space.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

WTF !..Here’s a Memo From the Boss - Vote This Way - NYTimes.com

Here’s a Memo From the Boss - Vote This Way - NYTimes.com
Imagine getting a letter from the boss, telling you how to vote.

But the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision has freed companies from those restrictions, and now several major companies, including Georgia-Pacific and Cintas, have sent letters or information packets to their employees suggesting — and sometimes explicitly recommending — how they should vote this fall.

In these letters, the executives complain about the costs of overregulation, the health care overhaul and possible tax increases. Some letters warn that if President Obama is re-elected, the company could be harmed, potentially jeopardizing jobs.

David A. Siegel, 77, chief executive of Westgate Resorts, a major time-share company, wrote to his 7,000 employees, saying that if Mr. Obama won, the prospect of higher taxes could hurt the company’s future.

Mr. Siegel added: “I really wanted them to know how I felt four more years under President Obama was going to affect them. It would be no different from telling your children: ‘Eat your spinach. It’s good for you.’ ”

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Pennsylvania Utility Company Admits Newsletter Contains Wrong Voter ID Information, Keeps Sending It Anyway | ThinkProgress

Pennsylvania Utility Company Admits Newsletter Contains Wrong Voter ID Information, Keeps Sending It Anyway | ThinkProgress
Pennsylvania’s biggest utility company, PECO, has admitted to sending incorrect voter ID information to 1.3 million customers in 7 Pennsylvania counties. Despite the recent suspension of the state’s strict voter ID law, PECO’s newsletter warned voters that they must present a valid photo ID in order to vote on Election Day.

“We were trying to do a service for our customers in Pennsylvania, to get the word out. Because of the press time of this particular publication, unfortunately the information in there is not entirely correct,” PECO rep Ben Armstrong told the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Armstrong said Peco intended to continue distribution of the faulty newsletter through its October billing cycle, running through Oct. 28. It’s not possible for its printer to schedule a corrected run, he said, and the newsletter contains information on other programs “that needs to get” to customers.

The other items this month include information on the utility’s home energy audits, how to make donations to its Matching Energy Assistance Fund, Fire Safety Month, and a cutout for customers to get discounts at the Please Touch Museum.

Peco’s next billing cycle begins Oct. 29, a week before the election, but the company has no plans to deal with voter ID in its next newsletter, Armstrong said.

Billboards Intimidate Black and Latino Voters - The ITT List

Billboards Intimidate Black and Latino Voters - The ITT List
“Voter fraud is a felony. Up to 3 1/2 yrs and $10,000 fine,” reads a billboard that has gone up in Black and Latino neighborhoods in Cleveland, Milwaukee and Cincinnati. Voter fraud is as rare as lightning strike deaths, but voter intimidation has been becoming more and more common—in the form of misleading television ads, poll watching, early voting laws, and now, billboards. To the uninformed, "voter fraud" sounds like a dire threat to free elections, which makes it a perfect smokescreen to mask attempts at voter suppression.

Clear Channel, a subsidiary of Bain Capital, owns the billboard but disavows the message, claiming they are not responsible for the language. The billboard was anonymously funded by “by a private family foundation.” The company has rejected billboard ads on other grounds in the past.




Maricopa County Elections Department admits error on date of general election on voter ID cards

PHOENIX, AZ - The Maricopa County Elections Department mistakenly listed the wrong date of the upcoming general election on an official government document.

The error appears on a document containing a voter ID card.

In addition to the ID card, the piece of paper it comes in lists other information such as important election dates.

In the corner of the document, it says November 6th in English but in Spanish it reads 8 de Noviembre, the 8th of November.

Election day is November 6th, not November 8th.

Is Sheriff Joe Arpaio driving Arizona voters to the Democrats? - Salon.com

Is Sheriff Joe Arpaio driving Arizona voters to the Democrats? - Salon.com
Arizona has earned its reputation as a sort of conservative laboratory where right-wing fetishes too kooky for other parts of the country can be brought to life. Among other experiments, there’s been SB-1070, the infamous immigration measure, and a law to allow people to carry concealed weapons without permits or background checks. Oh, and the state has seen plenty of flirtation with birtherism. It’s fitting Arizona has its very own time zone, a Democratic flack joked to me recently.

But you reap what you sow, as they say, and the nativist fervor state officials have been whipping up for years may be turning on them. Former state Senate president Russell Pearce, the author of SB-1070, has already been deposed. And on Nov. 6, the state’s even more famous immigrant-fighter, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, could be next. Despite a massive war chest, Arpaio is now clinging to a mere 4-point lead, according to the latest poll. The most likely reason? Arpaio’s racially charged antics have politicized and mobilized Latinos

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Bill Clinton Breaks Down Mitt Romney's Tax Plan 'Illusion' For Obama Campaign



The Huffington Post | By Nick Wing Posted: 10/16/2012 10:19 am EDT

Latino Voters Support Obama by 3-1 Ratio, But Are Less Certain than Others about Voting | Pew Hispanic Center

Latino Voters Support Obama by 3-1 Ratio, But Are Less Certain than Others about Voting | Pew Hispanic Center

Latino registered voters prefer President Barack Obama over Republican challenger Mitt Romney by 69% to 21% and express growing satisfaction with the direction of the nation and the state of their personal finances but are somewhat less certain than non-Hispanics that they will vote in this election, according to a new nationwide survey of 1,765 Latinos.

With the turnout rate of eligible Latinos voters historically lagging behind that of other groups, the new survey finds that 77% of Latino registered voters say they are “absolutely certain” they will vote this year. By comparison, 89% of all registered voters say the same in a separate Pew Research Center survey (2012b) of the general public taken at the same time.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Greedy Carlos Slim, World's Richest Man, Profiting Off 'Obamaphones' Aimed At Helping The Poor

Carlos Slim, World's Richest Man, Profiting Off 'Obamaphones' Aimed At Helping The Poor
The world’s richest man is apparently making a lot of money off a government program aimed at helping the poor Americans.

Every time someone gets a phone through Lifeline, a government program that gives phones to low-income Americans, TracPhone, a company in which Mexican telecom mogul Carlos Slim has a controlling stake, nets $10, Fox News reports. The company’s CEO, Frederick “F.J.” Pollak, who is a major Obama donor, also makes a profit from the data plans and minutes beneficiaries of the Lifeline program buy.

Regardless of the controversy over the phone itself, the allegations that Slim is benefiting off a program aimed at helping the poor may only fuel characterizations of the $69 billion man as a super-rich mogul who capitalizes on the woes of others.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Mississippi Joins Lawsuit Over Obama Immigration Police - Businessweek

Mississippi Joins Lawsuit Over Obama Immigration Police - Businessweek
Mississippi joined a lawsuit opposing the Obama administration’s policy barring deportation of many young undocumented immigrants, adding a state government to a group of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement employees challenging the rule.

An amended complaint filed yesterday in Dallas federal court adds Mississippi to a group of 10 plaintiffs who sued Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano in August.

Napolitano’s June 15 directive granting temporary reprieve from deportation to some young illegal immigrants requires ICE employees to break federal law, according to the complaint.

Bryant said the state joined the suit at no cost to taxpayers because it is being represented by Kris W. Kobach and P. Michael Jung, the attorneys who filed the initial case. Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state and a Republican, is a national advocate for tougher illegal-immigration laws.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

How will you vote ?

California Progressive Voter Guide

Dear Sonia,
In this election, Californians will vote on eleven ballot initiatives, making our state ground zero for key battles crucial to the progressive agenda nationwide.

We'll be voting YES to increase taxes and save our schools (Prop. 30), end the death penalty (Prop. 34), and label GMOs (Prop. 37). And we'll be voting NO to stop Prop. 32, a dangerous ballot initiative backed by a secretive SuperPAC with direct connections to the Koch Brothers.

In short, CREDO recommends:

•Prop. 30: YES
•Prop. 32: NO
•Prop. 33: NO
•Prop. 34: YES
•Prop. 35: YES
•Prop. 36: YES
•Prop. 37: YES
•Prop. 39: YES

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Dish vs. Gannett: Local TV Blackout Looms As Providers Fight Over Fees

Dish vs. Gannett: Local TV Blackout Looms As Providers Fight Over Fees

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A dispute over fees threatens to leave more than 2 million Dish subscribers in 19 cities without access to local television stations owned by Gannett just as the fall TV season is starting.

Dish Network Corp. claims Gannett Co. is asking for a 300 percent increase in fees for the right to carry 22 Gannett stations affiliated with NBC, CBS, ABC and Fox. Gannett says it's seeking a fair deal in line with market rates.

The two sides are also fighting over Dish's new digital video recorder, the Hopper, which allows customers to automatically skip commercials from the previous night's prime-time broadcasts. After consumers switch on the service, their playback of recorded programming from the four network broadcasters excludes the advertisements that were recorded. The ad-skipping doesn't work for live television.

Gannett argues the technology disrupts its business model and requires higher fees to compensate it.

Friday, October 5, 2012

FBI: Friendly fire likely in border shootings - CBS 5 - KPHO

FBI: Friendly fire likely in border shootings - CBS 5 - KPHO
PHOENIX (AP/CBS5) -
The fatal shooting of 30-year-old Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Ivie and the wounding of another agent early Tuesday morning five miles from the border was likely a case of friendly fire, the FBI announced Friday.

The FBI said preliminary evidence points to the two agents exchanging gunfire in the mistaken belief that each was being fired on by a hostile gunman.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Gov. Jan Brewer statement on fatal border shooting - Phoenix News - KTAR.com

Gov. Jan Brewer statement on fatal border shooting - Phoenix News - KTAR.com
"Arizona has lost another Border Patrol agent.

"In the dark hours before daybreak, one agent was killed and another injured while on-duty along Arizona's southern border. It is believed they were responding to an alerted ground sensor in a remote area near Bisbee, a short distance north of the border. In a tragic coincidence, these agents were assigned to Brian Terry Station -- newly dedicated and named for a U.S. Border Patrol agent murdered under similar circumstances in Arizona less than two years ago.   "More recently, in May 2011, we lost two more agents -- Eduardo Rojas, Jr. and Hector Clark -- when they were killed in a vehicle accident while pursuing suspected drug smugglers near Gila Bend. "What happens next has become all-too-familiar in Arizona. Flags will be lowered in honor of the slain agent. Elected officials will vow to find those responsible. Arizonans and Americans will grieve, and they should. But this ought not only be a day of tears. There should be anger, too. Righteous anger -- at the kind of evil that causes sorrow this deep, and at the federal failure and political stalemate that has left our border unsecured and our Border Patrol in harm's way. Four fallen agents in less than two years is the result.  "It has been 558 days since the Obama administration declared the security of the U.S.-Mexico border ‘better now than it has ever been.' I'll remember that statement today."

Michele Bachmann's Chicago Synagogue Visit Drives Attendees To Leave, Donate To Her Opponent

Michele Bachmann's Chicago Synagogue Visit Drives Attendees To Leave, Donate To Her Opponent
Gary Sircus, a 25-year member of Anshe Emet Synagogue, voiced more active opposition to Bachmann's attendance.

"The holiness of the room and the holiness of the evening was greatly diminished for me, if not completely destroyed," said Sircus, according to the Tribune. "Our congregation values and embodies tolerance, compassion, respect for individual rights, intelligence, science -- all of the things that I think Michele Bachmann stands against."

Hours after storming out of the service, Sircus donated to Jim Graves, Bachmann's Democratic opponent in Minnesota's 6th Congressional District, and included a note.

"I felt that the best way to 'honor' Ms. Bachmann's visit was to make a contribution to your campaign," he wrote to Graves. "Even though I do not vote in Minnesota, please do everything in your power to take away this evil woman's soapbox."

Mitt Romney: Deferred Action Immigration Plan Would Remain Under My Administration

Mitt Romney: Deferred Action Immigration Plan Would Remain Under My Administration
After months of dodging the question, Mitt Romney said on Monday night that he would respect the executive action President Barack Obama put into place granting certain groups of undocumented immigrants a reprieve from deportation.

"The people who have received the special visa that the president has put in place, which is a two-year visa, should expect that the visa would continue to be valid. I'm not going to take something that they've purchased," Romney said. "Before those visas have expired we will have the full immigration reform plan that I've proposed."

Monday, October 1, 2012

Honda expands North American recall to include over 600,000 Accords | Reuters

Honda expands North American recall to include over 600,000 Accords | Reuters
Honda is recalling 573,147 Accords in the United States equipped with V6 engines from model years 2003 through 2007, according to documents filed with the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In Canada, the number of affected Accords is 30,058, a company spokesman said.

The addition of the Accords to already recalled Acura TL cars from model years 2007 and 2008 raises the number of affected vehicles in the United States and Canada to 660,086.

The power steering hose in the cars may deteriorate prematurely due to high temperatures, resulting in cracks and leaks that could cause a loss of power steering assistance or smoke and possibly a fire, Honda said.

Calif. OKs drivers' licenses for some illegal immigrants - CBS News

Calif. OKs drivers' licenses for some illegal immigrants - CBS News
Some illegal immigrants could get California drivers licenses under a bill that Gov. Jerry Brown announced he signed into law late Sunday.

AB2189 by Assemblyman Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles, will let the Department of Motor Vehicles issue licenses to illegal immigrants eligible for work permits under a new Obama administration policy. The bill requires the department to accept as proof of legal residence whatever document the federal government provides to participants in its deferred action program.

Cedillo said his bill will make roads safer while letting young immigrants drive to school and to work. His reasoning drew support from several Republican lawmakers, while other Republicans argued the state should leave immigration issues to the federal government.