Do you agree that changing election laws is an attempt to influence the outcome of the election in favor of Republicans?
Early voting in the August 2012 primary was up 52 percent from August 2008. This impressive showing followed the Republican-dominated Legislature's passage of a controversial election law that, among other things, decreased the number of days in which in-person early voting was allowed.
Voters, apparently, can find their way to the polls -- when real issues motivate them. Issues and hot elections drive turnout. The length of the early-voting period -- now eight days -- matters less.
Previously, election supervisors could offer up to 14 days of early voting. That was changed in 2011 to eight days. State officials said 367,000 people took advantage of early voting in the Aug. 14 primary. In the August 2008 primary, 240,000 voters cast ballots early, over more days.
The improved early-voting numbers don't matter to Democrats. They see any attempt by Republicans to alter election laws as an effort to hand the presidential race over to the GOP.
"People are trying to take away your most precious right. Don't let them," said state Sen. Nan Rich, a Democrat from Broward County, who is also eyeing a run for governor in 2014.
Some beach, somewhere
There's a big umbrella casting shade over an empty chair...