Buchanan helps students conduct mock election


Buchanan helps students conduct mock election


Date: October 31, 2012
by: Josh Siegel | Staff Writer



LAKEWOOD RANCH — Congressman Vern Buchanan, R-Longboat Key, took a break from the debate of small government versus big government and clean energy versus oil Oct. 16, when he gave preschoolers a first-hand look at the political process at Primrose School.

Buchanan, the fifth-year Republican congressman for Florida’s 13th congressional district who is vying for the District 16 seat in this election, monitored for voter fraud and told tales of his tae-kwon-do teaching days, while Primose students participated in a mock debate pitting Percy the Rooster against Billy the Duck.
Buchanan stood out in the classroom of preschoolers, his 6-foot-tall frame overpowering a child-size chair, as some wide-eyed, fidgety preschoolers sat in front of him asking questions.

Students held mini-American flags as they listened.

Before the mock election began, Buchanan asked students what issues matter to them, while also talking about the importance of voting.

The children listed tennis, basketball, soccer and school as particularly pressing issues.

One boy casually blurted out that he too, like Buchanan, played soccer.

A child wearing a red, white and blue plaid outfit asked Buchanan if he lives in the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.

Before Buchanan could respond, one of his aides — who snapped pictures during the visit — asked, “What do you do up there (in Washington)?”

Buchanan replied, laughing, “I’m not sure myself.”

Then the election began.

A Primose teacher highlighted the candidates’ strengths. Percy the Rooster likes to act boldly and try new things but always makes good choices. Billy the Duck always keeps his promises and enjoys listening to music.

A secondary vote focused on snacks. Kids could choose between cheese and crackers and yogurt with bananas. Buchanan tried to insert a third-party candidate into that race.

“What do you guys think of broccoli?” Buchanan asked. “Do you like spinach?”

One-by-one, teachers called students’ names and gave each a voter registration card. The students, seemingly aware of the significance of their vote, would hurry over to Buchanan, who verified the voter’s identity.

“Is that really you?” Buchanan asked as he peered down at a card and a smiling boy in a red shirt looked back. “You look really good there.”

Children then tucked their votes into a box and received an “I voted today” sticker on their shirts.

Playfulness aside, Buchanan couldn’t avoid the seriousness of the presidential race in Washington.
Shortly after sitting down, Buchanan’s phone rang.

Unfazed, Buchanan joked, “That was the president. I will call him right back.”

After one boy trotted toward him without an “I voted today” sticker, Buchanan said, “He didn’t vote yet. That’s voter fraud.”

In a moment before election results were released, Buchanan referenced a Boys & Girls Club slogan, saying that children “are 25% of the population but represent 100% of the future.”

At the end of a week during which he visited three local schools — a break from the 40 weeks per year that he spends in Washington, D.C. — Buchanan raised his arms as he announced the results of the mock election.

Billy the Duck would serve cheese and crackers.

Contact Josh Siegel at jsiegel@yourobserver.com.


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Currently 2 Responses

  • 1.
  • A question that someone should ask Buchanan is this--before he meets with your children.

    In Florida the tax code says that as a agent of the state, it is the responsibility of the dealer to collect taxes owned the state on auto purchases, and not the responsibility of the consumer to play the tax.

    A consumer pays taxes on a lease in each monthly payment. When a lease is traded in on another vehicle where a retail contract takes the place of the lease, then taxes have never been collected on the lease trade in. So taxes must be first collected on that early lease trade-in. This is part of Florida tax codes.

    The records supplied by former employees show that Vern Buchanan dealerships would and still do show the lease trade-in as a deduct in retail price. As if it was a retail unit where taxes had already been collected. The difference is then taxed.

    What Buchanan dealerships are doing and have failed to do is not collecting millions in taxes owned the state and citizens of Florida on lease trade-ins.

    Why do they do this.

    According to former partners and employees is because it allows Buchanan dealerships to make more money on each retail sale that is financed by a lender were a lease trade-in takes place. . If the dealer collects the owed taxes then the lenders would required the price to be reduced in the form of additional down payments (which most consumers will not or can not do) or reduce the selling price (which most consumers would want the dealer to do).

    Either way the dealer would either lose a sale or lose gross income on the sale.

    Consumer/voters/citizens of Florida this is a form of tax fraud. This is money owed the sstate----in short you.

    Why is he allowed to cheat and you can't. Is it becasuse you are leting him .

    What is being discussed here is an average of 2200.00 in owed taxes on retail agreements where leases are traded in early. This adds up to millions owed the state of Florida.

    Duane Overholt autofraudexpert.com Consumer Adovcate
  • duane ovberholt
    Sat 17th Nov 2012
    at 3:54pm
  • 2.
  • That's nice! Refreshing to see a politician doing something that's not just geared towards gaining votes.
  • Oscar Acosta
    Wed 31st Oct 2012
    at 2:56pm
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