Politics, Government & Law

NAACP Statement on the Renewed Muslim Ban

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BALTIMORE, MD — The NAACP today released the following statement regarding the most recent Muslim Ban executive order from President Trump.

The new executive order restricting travel from six Muslim-majority countries is just the latest in a series of actions that threaten our nation’s values.  In a few short months, this administration has withdrawn from voting rights cases, reversed course on private prisons, revoked guidance on transgender youth, intensified immigration raids, and announced its intention to limit investigation of abusive and discriminatory law enforcement.  The message is clear: this administration is unwilling to protect and is in some cases actively targeting vulnerable communities.

Even though the new executive order purports to be rooted in national security interests, it cannot mask its true origins. The civil rights community is keenly aware of seemingly neutral laws that mask intentional discrimination. We have seen poll taxes and literacy tests being imposed as supposedly race-neutral voter qualification measures.  We continue to see voter ID laws that act as modern day poll taxes that rob communities of their vote.  Regardless of the smokescreen of security justifications, this executive order is a continuation of the administration’s stated goal: the implementation of a Muslim ban.

Just as we fight against voter suppression and police brutality, the NAACP continues to stand against discrimination based on racial identity, ethnicity, national origin, or religion.  We know that actions that rely on unfounded assumptions about dangerousness will always come at the expense of the most vulnerable populations.  We have seen the results of the divisive rhetoric that form the true rationale for this executive order.  We are witnessing a record number of hate crimes—including the death of an Indian student, Jewish cemeteries being defaced and community centers being threatened, and numerous attacks based on xenophobia and Islamophobia. We know that this hatred is poisonous and antithetical to the ideals that we fight to uphold.

The NAACP is made up of Christians, Muslims, Jews, and more.  Our members are individuals of many religions and some of no religion.  We stand with our Muslim brothers and sisters. We will join in protest of this ban.  We will continue to fight for equal rights for all, for policies based on evidence and not on fear.

 


Here's why YOU should VOTE NO on Amendment 1

By now you've either heard the commercials on the radio or seen the commercials on television touting Amendment 1 as favorable to Florida's consumers. Don't fall for the okey doke. Here's what you need to know AND share with your family, friends, co-workers, etc. VOTE NO ON AMENDMENT 1!

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Early voting has begun in Miami-Dade County. Go vote.

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Early voting for the November 2016 General Election has begun in Miami-Dade County. Please get out and vote today. This election, like others in previous years, is important. While the presidential race is garnering most of the news coverage but our state and local races are equally important also.  

Make sure all of your family and friends vote. Do you want to exercise your right to vote or do you want to wallow in regret? No excuses. No complaining. Inarguably, this presidential election cycle has been particularly nasty and polarizing. Many Americans are tired of the divisiveness and lies and just want the election to be over already.

Here is a list of the early voting sites in Miami-Dade County. Each location will be open 7am-7pm through Sunday, November 6. Don’t boo, vote. 

Early voting sites

 


President Obama to Campaign for Hillary Clinton in South Florida Thursday 10/20

BarackObama To Campaign in South Florida

 

On Thursday, October 20, President Barack Obama will campaign for Hillary Clinton in South Florida. At a public event, President Obama will lay out the high stakes of November's election for Florida families and highlight Clinton's vision for an America that is stronger together, with an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top.

With more people voting in this election than any in history, President Obama will urge Florida voters to take advantage of in-person early voting, which begins in Florida on Monday, October 24.


Members of the public interested in attending this event should RSVP here
Additional details for the trip will be announced in the coming days. This is the event that was previously postponed due to Hurricane Matthew.
 
 

Hillary for Florida Opened Office in Little Haiti

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Miami, FL - On Saturday, September 3, Hillary for Florida and the Democratic National Committee opened a DNC Headquarters in the Miami neighborhood of Little Haiti. The office serves as a hub for organizing activity in the local Haitian community - allowing supporters to mobilize and help elect Hillary Clinton and Democrats up and down the ballot in the upcoming General Election.

Several community leaders, campaign staff and volunteers were on hand for the office opening as was a handful of Anti-Clinton protestors. American voters, regardless of political affiliation, can’t afford to sit out this election. We also can’t afford a racist, hateful, divisive Donald Trump presidency.

Little Haiti DNC Headquarters/Hillary for Florida Office:

5905 NE 2nd Avenue
Miami, FL 33150 

DNC-Hillary for Florida Office Opening in Little Haiti
From left, Me, Miami-Dade County Commissioner Audrey Edmonson, and Michelle Austin

 

 

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 @vanessawbyers


Zeta Day on the Hill 2016 - "Unleash Your Superpower: Vote. Advocate. Run."

 


Zeta Day on the Hill 2016 Addresses How African Americans Can Leverage Their Power in Government

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WASHINGTON, Sept. 13, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated will convene in Washington D.C. for Zeta Day on the Hill (ZDOTH) 2016. ZDOTH will provide community leaders from 15 states a platform to voice their concerns on issues that affect minority communities across the United States.  This day-long event informs attendees how to make significant policy changes in their communities by getting engaged in government.

The theme of this year's ZDOTH will be "Unleash Your Superpower: Vote. Advocate. Run." Preceding the 46th Annual Legislative Conference hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, ZDOTH will focus its discussion on sharing ways that African Americans can unleash their collective power to drive change in their communities, and ultimately run for political office.

"In 2012, when President Barack Obama was re-elected, African American women were 33% more likely than any other sub-group to vote," said Dr. Mary Breaux Wright, Zeta International President. "Our power goes far beyond our vote. Zeta is demonstrating how community leaders can take their rightful seat at the political table and direct the kind of change we want to see in our communities."

Past Zeta International President, Dr. Barbara West Carpenter, a member of the Louisiana State House of Representatives, will be joined by leadership representatives from the NAACP, the White House Council of Women and Girls, the American Association of University Women, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to host workshops to help Zeta leaders tackle key issues that plague their communities. 

The day will culminate with a public community forum, A Seat at the Table: Black Women as VotersAdvocates, and Elected Officials featuring an expert panel of women, including Congresswoman Donna Edwards.

Zeta Day on the Hill will take place at the Holiday Inn Capitol, 550 C Street SW in Washington, D.C.

 


Pastor Wayne Lomax to Deliver Opening Prayer before Congress Today

Pastor Wayne Lomax
Pastor Wayne Lomax


 

WASHINGTON —This morning, Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson will welcome Pastor Wayne Lomax as guest chaplain to lead the day’s opening prayer before Congress. Pastor Lomax is the founder and senior pastor of the Fountain of New Life church located in Miami Gardens, Florida.

Founded nearly 20 years ago, the Fountain of New Life is one of the largest churches in Florida and an indispensable community partner in South Florida. The church enriches thousands of lives in Florida’s 24th congressional district and tackles many pressing issues, including hunger, poverty, and crime. The pastor is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.  He is a proud husband and father of three beautiful children.

Tune into your local C-SPAN station, at 11:30 a.m. ET, to watch Pastor Lomax deliver the prayer and Rep. Wilson welcome him to the House floor.


Hillary for Florida Releases New Haitian Radio Ad, "Our Home"/Hillary pou Florid ap anonse yon nouvo reklam nan radyo ayisyen ki rele: “Lakay nou”

 
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Miami, FL - In a new Hillary for Florida radio ad, "Our Home", a Haitian American supporter describes what's at stake for the Haitian American community this election and explains why everyone must do his or her part to elect Hillary Clinton as our next president.
 
The ad describes Hillary Clinton's vision for the Haitian American community, including good-paying jobs; quality, affordable health care; quality education; and comprehensive immigration reform. The ad also argues how important it is to cast a vote in this historic election: "If you do not vote, you do not count. We must do our part and vote for Hillary Clinton for President."
 
The ad will be running in key markets across the state of Florida starting Thursday, September 8. Audio available here.
 
Hillary pou Florid ap anonse yon nouvo reklam nan radyo ayisyen ki rele: “Lakay nou”
 
Miyami, an Florid –Nan yon nouvo reklam nan radyo pou Hillary pou Florid ki releLakay nou,” gen yon  sipòte ki yon Ayisyen–ki-Ameriken  ki dekri  sa ki an je pou nou nan eleksyon sa a  epi sipòtè esplike poutèt ki sa tout moun dwe fè tout sa yo dwepou yo voye Hillary Clinton monte kòm pochen prezidan peyi isit.
 

Reklam nan dekri vizyon Hillary Clinton genyen pou kominote Ayisyen ki Ameriken yo paregzanp: travay ki peye byen, swen medikal ki abòdab epi ki debòn kalite, edikasyon lekòl ki siperyè, epi refòm total kapital nan sistèm imigrasyon peyi isitReklam nan fè moun santi jan li enpòtan pou yon moun al vote nan eleksyon istorik sa a:  “Si w pa vote ou pa konte Se devwa nou pou nou vote  Hillary Clinton prezidan.’’ 

Y ap pase reklam nan  nan yon seri sipèmakèt kle kòmanse jedi 8 sektanmOu kab tande yon anrejistreman reklam nan isit la.

 


Community Leaders and Policy Makers Tackle Local and National Issues at Pumps, Pearls & Politics Forum and Luncheon

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Many of South Florida's civic-minded women and men are looking forward to the conversation and networking at the fourth annual Pumps, Pearls & Politics.
FILE Photo: Denetra Collins/Pumps, Pearls & Politics 2015

 

Miami, FL – July 21, 2016 – The fourth annual Pumps, Pearls & Politics forum and luncheon hosted by the Connection Committee of the Gamma Zeta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated is scheduled for 11:30 AM, Saturday, August 6, 2016, at the InterContinental Miami in Doral. The event is women-centered and women-focused, but men are included on the agenda and encouraged to attend. Many topics to be covered are gender neutral and impact the entire community. This year’s theme, Pumps, Pearls & Politics 2016: How Do We #UniteAmerica?, is particularly timely and is certain to generate thought-provoking conversation.  

Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson will bring the View from the Hill. Panelists include State Senator Oscar Braynon IIAdora Obi Nweze, President of the FL State Conference of the NAACP and Member of the National Board of Directors of the NAACP; United Teachers of Dade President Karla Hernandez-Mats; Political consultant Makeda McLune; Attorney Ronda Vangates; and social justice activist and Dream Defenders leader Umi Selah. Public relations practitioner and journalist Beverly Counts Rodrigues will serve as moderator and entertainment will be provided by Grammy-nominated spoken word artist Rebecca “Butterfly” Vaughns.

“In light of recent local and national incidents regarding police-involved shootings and the upcoming presidential election, this event provides the perfect opportunity for the community to engage in serious dialog,” said chapter president Andrea Robinson, “our guests will also be able to interact directly with participating political candidates.”

If You Go:

When: Saturday, August 6, 2016, 11:30 AM

Where: InterContinental Doral Miami, 2505 NW 87th Avenue, Doral, FL 33172 

Admission: $40 (Includes food and beverage.)

To pay online: http://pumpspearlspolitics2016.eventbrite.com (Sales close 7/30/2016.)

For more information send an email to Natasha Hines at pumpspearlspolitics@gmail.com.

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Pumps, Pearls & Politics 2015
FILE PHOTO: Some of the fabulous guests at Pumps, Pearls & Politics 2015.

 

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FILE PHOTO: Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson with Riley Davis and family at Pumps, Pearls & Politics 2015. / Denetra Collins

 


Wright versus City Hall, Part 2

Miami Gardens City Hall

The case of James B. Wright v. City of Miami Gardens continued yesterday in the courtroom of Judge Bronwyn Miller in downtown Miami. Wright was represented by Jason Murray of Murray Law and the City of Miami Gardens by J.C. Planas of KYMP. At issue is Wright’s attempt to be placed on the ballot for the upcoming Miami Gardens mayoral race after he was disqualified because the check for his qualifying fee was “returned” by Wells Fargo Bank.

The judge and attorneys for Wright and Miami Gardens largely agreed that candidate Wright followed the law in the submission of the required paperwork and qualifying fee. Florida law indicates that if a candidate’s check is returned by the bank, the filing officer (Miami Gardens City Clerk) is to notify the candidate immediately. The candidate has until the end of the qualifying period to pay the fee with a cashier’s check from the campaign account or be disqualified. Wright's attorney's challenged the immediate notification issue as Wright was not notified until 20 days after submitting the required paperwork and qualifying fee. 

The City and County elections department cited prohibitive cost to add Wright’s name to the August 30 ballot since absentee ballots have already been submitted for printing and some have been mailed to military voters overseas. In offering a means of satisfying Wright and not requiring the City to incur additional costs, Wright’s attorney offered that the Miami Gardens mayoral race be placed on the November General election ballot. The City argued that would unfairly advantage Wright; would be cost prohibitive if the race resulted in a run-off; and would not allow for sufficient citizen engagement as the run-off would be held in December when many voters are on vacation.

Judge Miller mentioned more than once that she is constrained by law in making her ruling. The Levey decision was also mentioned several times during the proceeding. Basically, Levey was a candidate for office who was disqualified because the bank erroneously caused her check for her qualifying fee to be dishonored. In spite of admittance of the error by the bank, Levey was denied having her name placed on the ballot. Judge Miller indicated she will make a ruling by this morning. Wright will provide an update on the case via Facebook Live at 10 AM today.

Several key issues regarding this situation still need to be clarified. The City of Miami Gardens has not provided requested documentation that would answer several specific open questions regarding how and when checks are processed in general and how Wright’s check and other candidates checks were processed specifically.

It's also crucial to note that this case is bigger than Miami Gardens. It shines a spotlight on Florida Law that allows for duly capable and qualified candidates to be disqualified due to errors not of their own doing. There is something inherently wrong with that. Stay tuned.

Miami Dade County Court
Courtroom 6-1, Upon adjournment of hearing