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News 13's 'Political Connections' goes one hour

Bright House Networks has officially announced that "Political Connections," its Sunday talk show on News 13, has gone to one hour.

The half-hour program made the switch in March. "Political Connections" airs at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. each Sunday.

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This week's program looks at Puerto Rico's financial crisis. Former Puerto Rico Sen. Miriam Ramirez Ferrer is interviewed by Melissa Zayas-Moreno. Michelle Ertel and Jeremiah Jaspon provide analysis in a segment with anchor Ybeth Bruzual.

The program uses PolitiFact's Truth-O-Meter to rate a Hillary Clinton claim about Republicans' plans to privatize Social Security.

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In the Common Ground segment with Alex Sink and Chris Ingram, the analysts look at same-sex and the providing of services.

News 13's Jackie Brockington looks at Tuesday's primary results, previews upcoming races and examines Ted Cruz's selection of Carly Fiorina as his running mate.

In the Web Center segment, Bruzual and Trey Paul look at whether religious issues are a determining factor in this year's voting.

"Political Connections" also airs Bay News 9, News 13's sister channel, at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. Sundays. The hosts are Bruzual in Orlando and Bay News 9 anchor Al Ruechel in the Tampa market.

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The program has put a lot of attention on Common Ground, featuring Sink, a Democrat, and Ingram, a Republican. Bright House says: "By emphasizing compromise, 'Common Ground' will challenge our leaders and the public to advance solutions instead of fighting between the political parties, which often leads to a standoff on progress."

The segment is co-produced with Fryed Egg Productions of Plant City.

"I'm proud our news channels are working with two highly respected political leaders, Alex Sink and Chris Ingram, to venture beyond partisan politics in an effort to find Common Ground solutions for the difficult problems facing our state and nation," said Alan Mason, corporate vice president for local programming at Bright House Networks.

Sink was elected as Florida's chief financial officer and served from 2007 to 2011. Ingram for years provided public relations services to many conservative leaders and groups. In 1999, he founded 411 Communications, a public relations and communications firm.

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