Friday, February 23, 2018
News Roundup

Supreme Court to decide if some civil rights era protections still relevant

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department stayed silent when Indiana and Washington state strengthened their voter identification rules. But when Georgia and Texas lawmakers wanted to do the same, they needed federal approval.

Now, this different treatment for different states will face a test at the Supreme Court. Justices on Wednesday will consider whether it's time to dismantle a key plank of the historic 1965 Voting Rights Act.

The entire law is not at risk of repeal. Instead, the case arising out of Shelby County, Ala., centers primarily on two sections.

The tool is called preclearance. Under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, designated states and jurisdictions must secure Justice Department approval before they change any voting practice or procedure.

A related section provides the formula for determining which political jurisdictions must meet the preclearance requirements.

Nine states are currently covered in their entirety: Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Texas, Alaska, Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi and Virginia. Selected jurisdictions of an additional seven states are also covered, including parts of California, Florida, North Carolina, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York and South Dakota. The law, though revised several times since 1965, still pegs preclearance coverage in part to voting turnout or registration in the 1964, 1968 and 1972 elections.

"The question is whether Congress needs to update this," said Carrie Severino, chief counsel of the conservative Judicial Crisis Network.

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Winter Olympics: Alina Zagitova wins figure skating gold, Russia’s first of Games

Winter Olympics: Alina Zagitova wins figure skating gold, Russia’s first of Games

GANGNEUNG, South Korea† — The Russians finally have a gold medal at the† Olympics, thanks to a 15-year-old who beat the fellow teen who inspired her to become a figure skater.Alina Zagitova won one of the Games' spotlight events Friday, edging ...
Updated: 12 minutes ago
Long awaited Clearwater Beach garage bleeds money in its first year

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Updated: 20 minutes ago
The Daystarter: Tallahassee showdown on gun bills; schools contend with threats; legal lion Barry Cohen closes shop after cancer return; Rays open Grapefruit League play

The Daystarter: Tallahassee showdown on gun bills; schools contend with threats; legal lion Barry Cohen closes shop after cancer return; Rays open Grapefruit League play

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what you need to know today.ē The 80s are here to stay, according to 10Weather WTSP. Weekend temperatures cool only slightly, to the low to mid 80s, with a low rain chance. Next week is just more of the s...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Legal lion Barry Cohen reveals leukemia and tells how it has changed his priorities

Legal lion Barry Cohen reveals leukemia and tells how it has changed his priorities

TAMPA ó Time was, if you were in deep trouble, you turned to Barry Cohen.He kept Jennifer Porter out of jail even after her hit-and-run accident left two children dead. He got charges against Steven and Marlene Aisenberg dropped and won them $3 milli...
Published: 02/23/18
Epilogue: Lee Davis, businessman and adventurer, survived many a scrape

Epilogue: Lee Davis, businessman and adventurer, survived many a scrape

TAMPA ó Friends and family have a saying about Lee Thornton Davis Jr. Once you met him, even for just a moment, you knew him forever."He was the most outgoing person Iíd ever met," Dick Greco said.Thatís something coming from Tampaís gregarious, 84-y...
Published: 02/23/18
Oldsmar has a flea market, waterfront and parks... but really wants a downtown

Oldsmar has a flea market, waterfront and parks... but really wants a downtown

OLDSMAR ó Wanted: One vibrant downtown. Contact: City of Oldsmar.Perhaps best known for its enormous flea market, Oldsmar sits at the top of Old Tampa Bay near the Pinellas-Hillsborough county line. On the one hand, itís a convenient location for peo...
Published: 02/23/18
Iraqi general who helped defeat ISIS returns to Tampa for commando award

Iraqi general who helped defeat ISIS returns to Tampa for commando award

PALM HARBOR ó Four years ago, during a visit to Tampa, Iraqi Staff Gen. Talib Shgati Mshari Al Kenani issued a warning to military leaders here about a jihadi group calling itself the Islamic State.This week, Al Kenani, head of the Iraqi commando for...
Published: 02/23/18
Itís

Itís "Krunch" time for East Lake students

On a recent Saturday, students arrived at a Pasco County high school for an all-day scrimmage.The gym was covered in black, plastic tarps, with a course down the middle. Six teams came ready to race their robots, including one from East Lake High Sch...
Published: 02/23/18
A look at new ships and trends in cruising for 2018

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Whatís new in cruising for 2018? As usual, thereís lots of razzle-dazzle ó laser tag, water slides, zip lines and massive LED screens ó along with a continued emphasis on healthy lifestyle options, from dining to fitness. But there are also changes u...
Published: 02/23/18

Gulfport candidates draw stark contrasts

GULFPORT ó One candidate is a plain-spoken, straightforward technology consultant who preaches "conservative fiscal responsibility" and votes Republican in national elections.The other is a self-proclaimed "progressive liberal" who practices law, pro...
Published: 02/23/18