Sunday, April 22, 2018
Editorials

Editorial: Gov. Rick Scott should let elections supervisors do their jobs

It turns out there is a reasonable way to scrub the voter rolls of ineligible voters — and it's not Gov. Rick Scott's politically motivated purge. Let the county supervisors of election do their jobs.

Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Deborah Clark has posted a legal notice notifying 98 registered voters their eligibility to cast a ballot has been called into question. Of that total, 92 have been adjudicated as felons, four have been found by a court to be mentally incompetent and two are deceased. The flagged voters (the living ones) have 30 days to clear up questions about their eligibility or be removed from the rolls. Clark is simply performing the duties she was elected to do, without meddling from the governor's office.

There are 607,332 registered voters in Pinellas County. Elections officials routinely cross-check with state records looking for felons, mental incompetents, fictitious persons, illegal aliens or voters who have provided an invalid address. The current system of identifying improperly registered voters works. But Scott would go further by bullying the state's supervisors of elections to engage in a needless purge of voting rolls. Never mind that the governor's flawed 2012 effort found only a handful of ineligible voters on the rolls or that voter fraud is virtually nonexistent.

Clark, along with many other supervisors of elections, rightly has expressed reservations with Scott's latest ill-conceived voter purge scheme, noting Secretary of State Ken Detzner has not provided a Homeland Security database to even conduct a reliable search. A better approach is to let Clark and her peers keep doing their jobs without political interference from Tallahassee.

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Editorial: Pruitt sets new low for ethics at EPA

Editorial: Pruitt sets new low for ethics at EPA

Not too many people took then-candidate Donald Trump seriously when he famously campaigned to "drain the swamp" as president. But that shouldn’t give this administration a free pass to excuse the behavior of Scott Pruitt, the administrator of the Env...
Published: 04/22/18
Editorial: Allegiant Air still has safety issues

Editorial: Allegiant Air still has safety issues

Allegiant Air’s safety record remains troubling, and the Federal Aviation Administration’s reluctance to talk about it is no more encouraging. Those are the key takeaways from a 60 Minutes report on the low-cost carrier’s high rate of mid-flight brea...
Published: 04/21/18

Editorial: Women’s work undervalued in bay area

Even a strong economy and low unemployment cannot overcome the persistent pay gap affecting full-time working women in Florida. A new report shows women in Florida earned 12.5 percent less on average than their male counterparts, and the disparities ...
Published: 04/21/18
Editorial: New Cuba president is chance for new start

Editorial: New Cuba president is chance for new start

For all the symbolism, Raul Castro’s handoff of the Cuban presidency this week amounts to less than meets the eye even if his handpicked successor, the Communist Party functionary Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez, is the first person not named Castro to le...
Published: 04/20/18

Editorial: A missed chance for open primary elections

The Florida Constitution Revision Commission did a lot of things wrong this week by combining unrelated or unpalatable provisions into single amendments that will appear on the November ballot. It also wasted an opportunity to do one thing right. The...
Published: 04/20/18
Editorial: When they visit Nature’s Classroom, kids are right where they belong

Editorial: When they visit Nature’s Classroom, kids are right where they belong

The Hillsborough school district planted a fruitful seed with the opening of Nature’s Classroom five decades ago on the cypress-lined banks of the Hillsborough River northeast of Tampa. • The lessons taught there to some 17,000 sixth graders each yea...
Published: 04/20/18

Editorial: Equality pays off on Southwest Flight 1380

The passengers of Southwest Flight 1380 can be thankful that, 33 years ago, the U.S. Navy took the lead on equal opportunity.Capt. Tammie Jo Shults was piloting the flight from New York to Dallas on Tuesday when an engine exploded, blowing out a wind...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18
Editorial: Why single-member districts would be bad for Hillsborough commission

Editorial: Why single-member districts would be bad for Hillsborough commission

Anyone looking to make Hillsborough County government bigger, costlier, more dysfunctional and less of a regional force should love the idea that Commissioner Sandy Murman rolled out this week. She proposes enlarging the seven-member board to nine, e...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18
Editorial: Improving foster care in Hillsborough

Editorial: Improving foster care in Hillsborough

A new foster care provider in Hillsborough County is poised to take over operations in May, only months after its predecessor was fired for what was alleged to be a pattern of failing to supervise at-risk children in its care. Many of the case manage...
Published: 04/18/18

Another voice: Back to postal reform

President Donald Trump is angry at Amazon for, in his tweeted words, "costing the United States Post Office massive amounts of money for being their Delivery Boy." Yet in more recent days, Trump has at least channeled his feelings in what could prove...
Published: 04/17/18
Updated: 04/18/18