News & Public Affairs

Friday May 29, 2015


Kevin Bcckner (right, with Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn) is running for Clerk of Courts.

photo by Janelle Irwin/WMNF News.

Beckner running for Hillsborough Clerk of Court

County Commissioner Kevin Beckner has officially filed to run for Hillsborough’s Clerk of the Circuit Court. This is being seen as somewhat of a curve-ball in the local political world, as Beckner could be running against incumbent Pat Frank, the long-time Hillsborough County political icon and fellow Democrat.

According to Saint Petersblog, Kevin Beckner said it was Frank herself who called him a few months ago to ask if he'd ever considered running for Clerk of the Circuit Courts. Howe...

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Daniel Tilley with the Florida ACLU on "conscience protection" clause on gay adoption; Rays stadium woes

Ever since the Florida House passed a repeal of the ban on same-sex adoption last month, there has been a ferocious reaction by social conservatives in the Florida Legislature. That's what the "conscience protection" bill now being floated in the Florida House is all about, and, according to the ACLU's Daniel Tilley, it's unconstitutional.

Also on the program, several members of the St. Petersburg City Council have been getting hammered by editorial boards and other media sources for being...

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Florida House advances bill allowing groups to refuse adoptions to same-sex couples

Thursday the Florida House Judiciary Committee approved a bill (HB 7111) that would allow private agencies to cite religious or moral grounds and refuse to facilitate adoptions by same-sex couples.

Republican Representative Jason Brodeur said same-sex couples can seek adoptions through the Department of Children and Families or a private agency that doesn't have a problem with it.

But in one exchange, Brodeur was challenged by St. Petersburg’s Dwight Dudley, who like other Democrats su...

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A Move to Amend protest holds a banner on an overpass in Kitsap County,Washington

photo by Backbone Campaign/ flickr

Move to Amend rallies for full disclosure of political contributions by corporations

Today political advocacy group Move to Amend will be holding a nationwide series of rallies calling for President Obama to sign an executive order requiring full disclosure of political contributions from corporations. We talk to Rae Claire Johnson of Move to Amend Pinellas on how corporate involvement in politics can pose conflicts of interests and the benefits of greater transparency regarding corporate donations.[The group will be holding a rally tonight](

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Advocates for an increase to the minimum wage, from left to right: Bleu Rainer, Cole Bellamy,MiAudras Harris,Nadaije Paul Jajoute

photo by Rob Lorei

Local workers call for increase of minimum wage to $15 an hour.

Many workers spanning industries from retail, food service, health care and academia make just above the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Health care benefits, vacation time and paid maternity leaves are often non-existent. Today we talk to four local workers who are advocating for an increase of the minimum wage to $15 an hour , as part of the national Fight for 15 campaign, which on March 31 called for a general worker strike on Wednesday April 15. Joining us are Mcdonalds employee ...

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Eric Deggans, Author and Media Critic for National Public Radio

Media critic Eric Deggans and USF Professor Roy Kaplan tackle race in America

Race has been the topic of national conversation following the deaths of Trayvon Martin, Eric Gardner, Micheal Brown, and Tamir Rice. Each was either a black man or boy. Many feel now is the time for to talk about race while others argue that we are living in a post-racial society that has moved past racism, discrimination, and prejudice. Today we have Eric Deggans, Author of Race-Baiter, How the Media Wields Dangerous Words to Divide a Nation and media critic with NPR, and Roy Kaplan, au...

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St. Petersburg City Council member Darden Rice speaks at 3 Daughters Brewing.

photo by Seán Kinane.

Craft beer enthusiasts hook up with environmentalists to call for clean water in Florida

A new alliance between environmentalists and craft beer enthusiasts has formed to protect clean water and to call on the Florida legislature to act; they argue that microbreweries need pure water to brew the best beer.

The alliance between craft beer enthusiasts and environmentalists is calling for a ban on fracking in Florida and for the Environmental Protection Agency to enforce Clean Water Act protections for state waterways.

Tuesday night at [3 Daughters Brewing](http://3dbrewing....

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Paula Dockery, Syndicated Political Columnist and former State Senator

photo by Twitter

Columnist Paula Dockery and State Senator Greg Evers address issues facing the State Prison System

Hosting today's talk portion of Midpoint is Paula Dockery, a former state senator from Lakeland and syndicated columnist whose work appears in 22 Florida papers each week. Today she takes on the state prison system. Joining the discussion is State Senator and Chair of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee Greg Evers. Together they discuss prison privatization,high leadership turnover, reports of corruption and a string of brutal inmate deaths that have plagued the system.

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Wojtek Sawa, Polish-born visual artist and author of The Wall Speak- Voices of the Unheard

Interactive art exhibit gives voice to Polish children of WWII, and Indiana governor defends Religious Freedom Law

Today on Radioactivity we talk with Wojtek Sawa, a Polish-born visual artist based out of Sarasota. Sawa is the the author of The Wall Speaks - Voices of the Unheard, an interactive multimedia exhibit currently on display at The Florida Holocaust Museum. The exhibit tells the story of the Polish experience of World War II, of a country that at one point was simultaneous besieged by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. Like many Polish families, Sawa's was personally affected by the war; His f...

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Florida farmers paid by state to store water: conversation with Craig Pittman

On WMNF News' MidPoint we spoke about the crucial issue of water in Florida with Craig Pittman, staff writer for the Tampa Bay Times. His latest article is “Florida taxpayers pay ranchers millions to hold water back from Lake Okeechobee.”

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