On the Radar: Obama in Puerto Rico, 'Spider-Man' opens, help for Japan kids
President Barack Obama speaks at a campaign event in Miami on Monday night.
June 14th, 2011
06:04 AM ET

On the Radar: Obama in Puerto Rico, 'Spider-Man' opens, help for Japan kids

Three things you need to know today.

President visits Puerto Rico: President Barack Obama makes a rare presidential visit to Puerto Rico on Tuesday, spending about five hours there on a trip aimed as much at Puerto Ricans on the mainland as those on the island.

The roughly 4 million residents of the U.S. Caribbean territory are American citizens but can't vote for president, while the almost 5 million Puerto Ricans living in the 50 U.S. states have full voting rights, and Obama needs strong support in 2012 from what traditionally has been a largely Democratic constituency.

In particular, an influx of Puerto Ricans has moved in recent years to central Florida, a key swing state in Obama's re-election campaign. Other states with large Puerto Rican communities include New York and Connecticut.

Obama's trip, the first official presidential visit to Puerto Rico in 50 years, shows "the importance the Hispanic vote has in his re-election campaign," said political analyst Angel Rosa.

Obama will make a brief speech on arrival at Muniz Air National Guard Base and then visit La Fortaleza, the oldest executive mansion in the Western Hemisphere, according to a White House document.

The president also will attend a Democratic National Committee event before returning to Washington on Tuesday night.

Spider-Man on Broadway: The retooled version of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" opens on Broadway on Tuesday after going through millions of dollars in development costs, six delayed openings and a record-setting 180 preview performances.

The original concept for "Spider-Man" was the vision of Julie Taymor, the Tony Award-winning director of the stage version of The Lion King.  She was pushed aside by producers in March, although she reportedly retains some involvement in the show.

Musical collaborators are U2 bandmates Bono and the Edge, who wrote the show's music and lyrics, stayed on and added several new songs while rewriting a few others. Also added to the revamped show are an additional five flying sequences and expanded roles for Aunt May, Uncle Ben and love-interest Mary Jane Watson.

Radiation detectors for Japanese kids: Officials of Japan's hard-hit Fukushima city will begin handing out radiation measuring devices to 34,000 children in a plan to help calm fears about radiation.

Fukushima city is about  60 kilometers (37 miles) from the Fukushima Daiichi Plant, which experienced full meltdowns at three reactors in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami on March 11.

The measuring devices, called dosimeters, will be given to the children for three months starting in September, officials said.

The devices wil be given to nursery schools, kindergartens, elementary schools and middle schools in the city.

soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    It is fine to nix the gay judge's ruling on Proposition 8 as long as no African-American judges ever rule on cases regarding race and civil rights.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Martin Luther King

      People of color or "being black" is not a moral cupability as is being gay.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:46 am | Report abuse |
    • tokyo joe

      Maybe he can get them to pay taxes.....

      June 14, 2011 at 7:16 am | Report abuse |
    • eaglestar51

      @tokyojoe and Joey Isotta-Fraschini

      American citizens (and resident aliens) residing in Puerto Rico already pay taxes – FICA, FUTA and a slew of others, as well as full Federal income tax on all income that is not from Puerto Rico sources. You can check it out.

      Puerto Ricans have also fought in every US war (and FOR the US, in case you wondered) since the War of Independence (yeah, even that one, more than 120 years before we became a part of the United States). You can check that out too.

      Knowledge. It's a beautiful thing.

      June 14, 2011 at 8:34 am | Report abuse |
    • JMV

      Main problem with some americans, not all of them of course, is that they feel less because they are not billingual. and EagleStar51, you nailed it! Our fellow americans, learning about your own story and possesions will set you free 🙂

      June 14, 2011 at 8:58 am | Report abuse |
  2. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ faux Martin Luther King, 6:46 AM:
    Good post!
    That's exactly the discussion I hoped to begin.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:52 am | Report abuse |
  3. Casey Case

    Lee Anthony recalled his sister saying, “she couldn’t believe it was happening, and it felt kind of surreal to her,” he testified. She said she did nothing to stop her child from being taken, he recounted, because “she was scared and she didn’t know what to do.”

    His sister told him from time to time, Gonzalez would contact her through Casey Anthony’s MySpace page and direct her as to what to do and where to go. She went to the locations, she said, in hopes of seeing or retrieving her daughter but was never successful in finding her.

    Casey Anthony’s account as related by Lee Anthony differed markedly from the one she gave authorities after Caylee was reported missing. She maintained to police she dropped the child off at the nanny’s apartment that morning and never saw her again.

    Authorities were never able to find the nanny. They did find a woman named Zenaida Gonzalez, who denied ever meeting Casey Anthony or Caylee and later sued for defamation.

    “Zanny never materialized?” Baez asked Lee Anthony Thursday. “To this day, no,” he replied.

    Lee Anthony also testified Thursday that he was the one searching the Internet on the Anthony family computer July 15 and 16, 2008. A computer examiner testified Wednesday that no searches for Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez were found on the computer until July 16 — dealing a potential blow to Casey Anthony’s claims to authorities that she was frantically searching for her daughter in the month before her disappearance was reported.

    Computer experts testified Wednesday that in March, someone using the desktop computer, located in the home Casey Anthony shared with her parents, searched for terms including “chloroform,” “inhalation,” “how to make chloroform” and “head injury.”

    The searches were found in a portion of the computer’s hard drive that indicated they had been deleted, Detective Sandra Osborne of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office testified Wednesday.

    However, she told jurors, deleted material remains on a computer’s hard drive and can be retrieved until it is overwritten by new data. It had not been overwritten on the Anthonys’ computer, she said, and “a complete Internet history” was obtained.

    June 14, 2011 at 7:06 am | Report abuse |
  4. Jazzzzzzzz The Queen Of Snot

    Casey Case don't you ever get tired?

    June 14, 2011 at 8:14 am | Report abuse |
  5. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Do we need Luquillo Beach enough to grant statehood?
    What do you mean, pay taxes?
    How much welfare would we have to pay for those votes?

    June 14, 2011 at 8:14 am | Report abuse |
  6. citizenUSA

    I don't blame Obama for the trip. Puerto Rico is slammin'.

    June 14, 2011 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
  7. Willy Brown

    Daddy George is sending the puppet to find votes

    June 14, 2011 at 8:26 am | Report abuse |
  8. Shawn

    Is there any pretense of official business or is this whole trip strictly political? Does the DNC pay for this?

    June 14, 2011 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  9. BRD812

    official business??? how about the fact that we need to decide the future status of the island. enough for you?

    June 14, 2011 at 9:02 am | Report abuse |
  10. WVLady63

    Oh great, obama is going to Puerto Rico! Probably to beg for that country to send more of its criminals and HIV infected people to America for the taxpayers to take care of so that he can have more democrats to help him win re-election. Good luck with that obama!!!!!

    June 14, 2011 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |
    • BRD812

      seriously? ignorance is bliss I guess..hiv infected people? criminals?....

      June 14, 2011 at 9:16 am | Report abuse |
    • BRD812

      and another thing...it isn't a country, it's a commonwealth

      June 14, 2011 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Rich - US Marine Corp

      I am proud that I was able to serve in the US Marine and was able to protect your 1st amendment (freedom of speech) rights. I can see that you are a misguided and misinformed US citizen. Ignorance is bliss
      The population in the US is maybe oomph times bigger than in PR and with that said. You have more HIV and welfare cases in the mainland.
      The only disappointment and injustice being done to the Puerto Rican people is that we our naturalized US citizens and we can’t vote for president. To think we were annexed from Spain and have been in every major war campaign in the name of USA and we still don’t get our respect. But we are proud people. Hey, this should be challenged in the Supreme Court
      Semper Fi

      June 14, 2011 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Jen in Boston

      @Rich: Thank you for your service; I'm proud to have you as a compatriot! Unfortunately, there are plenty of people like WVLady63 who still think bigotry and wilfull stupidity are patriotic and, gosh, Ladylike! She does a great job of smearing the general reputation of the less ridiculous residents of WV. Here in Boston, I'm sure some day-to-day aspects of our local culture are different from yours in Puerto Rico, but the vast majority of us share the same real American values that you hold. In Boston, knowledge and open-mindedness are seen as patriotic, cool, and valuable; ignorance and bigotry are shameful, unpatriotic, and despised. Don't be surprised if a couple of folks who see open-mindedness, rejection of hatred, and love of learning as "elitist" or "communist" chime in here to reinforce my point. Forget them. Let's do our thing! 🙂

      June 14, 2011 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  11. Willis Tokeaville

    He'll be smokin' up the place Mon.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:29 am | Report abuse |
  12. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Learning enough Spanish to communicate is not a big deal. Puerto Ricans understand me when I speak to them in Italian.
    A pupil of mine from Spain is helping me with get-along Spanish.
    A Castillian accent is so beautiful that it makes study of Spanish worthwhile just for the joy of hearing it.
    Of course, it helps native USA citizens to learn another language if they paid enough attention in school to speak English.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:30 am | Report abuse |
  13. Cesar The Chorizo Champ Of Chihuahua

    WAY too many Puerto Ricans in the states. That number is a little too unacceptable. "Yes, Barack. There is a Spiderman."

    June 14, 2011 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  14. sir si

    Puerto Rico does not produce much. Everything is imported, fruit, coffee, most of the products that can be naturally grown on the island. Most puerto ricans living in the u.s. are on welfare. Of course Obama is going to try to get these votes.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
    • BRD812

      that's not true at all...you talking out of stereotyping....I've never met a PRican in the states that doesn't work....most of the PRican that are on welfare actually live in the island and it's because of the horrible economy we are having. Plus PR actually makes have the things we use...interestingly enough we have to send it to the USA before we can actually consume it...Thanks to all the restrictions the usa has on our exportation we have had a huge reduction in the market

      June 14, 2011 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  15. eaglestar51


    Madame, it was Cuba that opened its jails and mental health facilities so the inmates could emigrate to the US during the Mariel boatlift in the 80s.

    While it is true that during the earlier part of the 20th century most Puerto Ricans who moved to the US were poor and illiterate ("emigration" is not the correct word, as people born in Puerto Rico are, and have since 1917 been, American citizens), most of those who have relocated recently are middle-class, educated citizens – doctors, lawyers and engineers, among them – searching for employment opportunities and a better way of life.

    Knowledge. It's a beautiful thing.

    June 14, 2011 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
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