Monday, November 3, 2014

Obama visits Detroit plus election news from campuses on the campaign trail

This should be the next to last update of election news from campuses on the campaign trail.  Based on "if it moves, it leads," I begin with WXYZ covering President Obama visits Detroit.

Since this took place at Wayne State University, it technically counts as election news from a campus on the campaign trail.

Follow over the jump for more election news from Colorado, Florida, Illinois, and Iowa originally included in Overnight News Digest: Science Saturday (A bad week for private space) on Daily Kos.

University of Colorado: Youth snap parents into political-rearing mode, says CU-Boulder-led study
October 30, 2014
Parents are more reactive than proactive when providing political influence and opportunities for their children, according to a study led by the University of Colorado Boulder.

The study, published in the journal Social Science Quarterly, found that political engagement independently pursued by youth spurs parents to realize that childrearing extends to the civic realm. It also is the first study to show intentional political parenting as an outcome of family interaction rather than a stimulus.

“Ideally, moms and dads would view parenting as an opportunity to encourage political development and involvement,” said Michael McDevitt, CU-Boulder professor of media, communication and information and lead author of the paper. “But oftentimes, parents need some kind of wake-up call, such as a daughter bringing up controversial topics discussed at school or a son suddenly paying attention to election news coverage.”
University of Florida: Technology pioneered by UF researcher provides improved access for disabled voters
October 29, 2014
A University of Florida researcher’s desire to provide citizens with disabilities the same opportunity to vote as everyone else could serve as the catalyst for revolutionizing voter access nationwide.

Juan Gilbert’s Prime III, an electronic voting machine a decade in the making, has debuted in primary elections in several states. Officials in New Hampshire were so impressed with Prime III’s performance that they plan to use it in additional precincts in the upcoming general election.

“It was even more seamless than we thought it would be,” said New Hampshire Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Manning. “Our intention long range is to get to the point where every one of our polling places uses Prime III.”
According to a research report compiled at Rutgers University, 15.6 million people with disabilities reported voting in the November 2012 elections, a turnout 5.7 percentage points lower than that for people without disabilities. There would be 3 million more voters with disabilities if they voted at the same rate as people without disabilities who are otherwise similar in age and other demographic characteristics, according to the report.
Florida Atlantic University: Florida Atlantic University Poll Finds Democrats Keep Edge with Hispanic Voters Despite Split on U.S. President Obama
October 29, 2014
A new national poll by the Florida Atlantic University Business and Economic Polling Initiative ( FAU BEPI ) finds 50 percent of Hispanics said they will vote for a Democratic candidate in the midterms compared to 28 percent who said they would vote Republican. However, Hispanics are split at 40 percent in their approval/disapproval of U.S. President Barack Obama, according to the survey.

“The data suggests that despite their disappointment with President Obama, Hispanic voters are not ready to abandon the Democratic Party. The Republicans have failed to take advantage of the president’s falling popularity in this growing community,” said Kevin Wagner, associate professor of political science at FAU and a research fellow of the Initiative. “The Hispanic vote could be in play, but the GOP has not made a sufficient effort to attract the voters away from the Democratic Party.”

This is particularly true with Hispanic voters who have a strong group identification. Hispanics who believe that policies affecting their group have an impact on their individual lives are more likely to support Democratic candidates in the mid-term election over Republicans by 20 percent (55 percent to 35 percent). The economy remains the most important issue for Hispanic voters at 38 percent, followed by healthcare at 20 percent, and 16 percent who have selected immigration policy as the key issue.
University of Central Florida: As Candidates' TV Ads Heat Up, Economy Hits Its Stride
October 31, 2014
As the Florida governor’s race heads into its final days, the candidates are turning up the heat with television ads blaming each other for the state’s economic woes or taking credit for gains made.

But the governor, no matter who he or she is, can’t be held solely responsible for how the economy has done, said Sean Snaith, a University of Central Florida economist and director of the Institute for Economic Competitiveness.

The governor’s position has insufficient power to counteract the headwinds of a national recession or to dictate the measures implemented by the Federal Reserve Bank, Snaith said.

“I have long asserted that politicians frequently get too much credit or too much blame for what happens in the economy during their time in office,” Snaith said today “A plethora of ingredients goes into the recipe and determines the outcomes in the state’s economy, and most of those ingredients, including some of the most important ones, are simply beyond the control of whomever occupies the governor’s office in Tallahassee.”
Illinois State University: Illinois State to hold election night watch party
October 28, 2014
On Tuesday, Nov. 4, Illinois State University’s American Democracy Project (ADP) will host Election Night Live, a watch party for the 2014 election returns. The event, which will run from 6 to 10 p.m. in room 151 of the Center for Visual Arts, is free and open to the public. 

In addition to a live stream of election results, representatives from the School of Communication will be monitoring social media chatter and presenting results using their Social Media Analytics Command Center (SMACC). ADP will provide free pizza and beverages.
Southern Illinois University: Poll: Illinois voters support ballot initiatives
October 27, 2014
CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The constitutional amendments and advisory referenda on the ballot in Illinois for the mid-term elections appear headed to victories by comfortable margins.  That is the indication of a statewide poll sponsored by the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Each of the proposals studied garnered well over a majority of support and most were supported by two-thirds to over three-fourths of the voters.  The poll questioned both registered voters and those deemed the most likely voters, and the results were essentially the same. The full sample of registered voters has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.  The smaller likely voter sample has a margin of error of 3.7 percentage points. 

The two proposed amendments to the 1970 Constitution were widely supported.
Topics of initiatives include right to vote, crime victims' rights, raising the minimum wage, covering birth control, and increasing the millionaire tax.

WHO Radio: Group Urges Women to Run for Office
October 25, 2014
DES MOINES, Iowa - Iowa has never elected a woman to the US Congress.

That fact surprised University of Iowa Senior Yvonne Filley. It inspired her to join a group dedicated to finding out why Iowa's political offices are dominated by men. 50-50 by 2020 is focused on encouraging women to participate in politics. Filley clarified the project determined to find the right women to run for office.

"I don't think that anyone should vote for someone just because they're a woman or just because they're a man," Filley explained. "I think one of the goals is not to just have a woman be in that position, but to give more women the opportunity to be in that position."
WHO Radio: Early Voting At Record Levels
October 30, 2014
Latest numbers as of 10:30 Friday morning show more than 70-thousand absentee ballots returned in Polk County alone.  And, Polk County Auditor Jamie Fitzgerald says it's shaping up to be the biggest early or absentee voting turn-out in a non-presidential election year.
Iowa State University: NPR’s Mara Liasson to give election analysis for Mary Louise Smith lecture
October 30, 2014
AMES, Iowa – The outcome of the midterm elections will set the stage for the 2016 presidential election and signal the direction of Congress for the next two years. National Public Radio political correspondent Mara Liasson will analyze the election results and explain what it all means in her public lecture, “What Just Happened? The 2014 Elections and Beyond” at Iowa State University.       

Liasson is the fall 2014 Mary Louise Smith Chair in Women and Politics. As a political correspondent, she reports on politics and policy – focusing on the White House and Congress – and also covers political trends beyond the Beltway. Her reports are regularly featured on NPR’s “All Things Considered” and “Morning Edition.” Liasson also serves as a panelist on the “FOX News Sunday” public affairs program.
“In recent weeks, Ms. Liasson has reported on Democratic and Republican Party appeals to millennial voters as well as the stances of candidates of both parties on the minimum wage, gay marriage, reproductive health and immigration,” Bystrom said. “We’ve found that hosting a nationally known woman political reporter shortly after an election helps our university and local communities engage in a thoughtful dialogue about the results.”
Stay tuned for an endorsement entry and posts promoting my articles on the election.

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