GOP Holds Senate Win as Florida Recounts End, Lawsuits Ebb

GOP Rick Scott senate win FloridaFlorida Gov. Rick Scott’s victory in the race for a U.S. Senate seat is nearing official acknowledgment. The race already went through machine and hand recounts. A slew of lawsuits filed by Scott’s opponents is running out of arguments that would pack enough punch to flip the result.

After the hand recount concluded on Nov. 18, Scott still led by about 10,000 votes against the incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson, who conceded the race after learning the results.

President Donald Trump congratulated Scott via Twitter.

“From day one Rick Scott never wavered. He was a great Governor and will be even a greater Senator in representing the People of Florida,” he said. “Congratulations to Rick on having waged such a courageous and successful campaign!”

The Florida election results are to be certified as official on Nov. 20.

Hand Recount

The hand recount only checked overvotes and undervotes—ballots where people picked more candidates than allowed or didn’t mark a candidate in some races. There were about 93,000 such votes.

Nelson’s hope was that the vote-counting machines missed a lot of properly filled ballots for the Senate race in the heavily Democrat-leaning Broward County. About 25,000 more voted in the Governor race than in the Senate race in Broward County.

But the election workers determined otherwise, mostly seeing that Broward County voters really skipped the Senate race, according to Mother Jones’s Pema Levy, who observed the recount.

“Folks on the floor here in Broward seem to agree that the vast majority of ballots here are ‘no votes’ in the Senate race,” she said in a Nov. 16 tweet. “Bad news for Nelson, who needs to pick up thousands here. Not on track to do that.”

In the end, Nelson collected 410 more votes in Broward, while Scott had 136 votes added to his tally, The Miami Heard reported.

Also on Nov. 16, District Court Judge Mark Walker rejected demands in several lawsuits. One suit, by Nelson, demanded the state nix its rules for judging ballots with errors. Another, by the League of Women Voters, demanded that Scott recuses himself from election-related actions as a governor, the Sun Sentinel reported. Walker also dismissed (pdf) a demand that the deadline for mail-in ballots be extended 10 days beyond the election day, which is now only allowed for the overseas voters.

Scott is to be replaced in office by former Congressman Ron DeSantis, a Republican, who ended up nearly 34,000 votes ahead of Democrat Andrew Gillum after the machine recount. The lead represents a margin of 0.41, above the 0.25 percent threshold that triggers a hand recount.

Gillum, the mayor of Tallahassee, refused to concede after the recount, pointing to pending litigation that may still reshuffle a bit the rules for which votes should or shouldn’t be rejected. On Nov. 17, however, Gillum changed his mind and acknowledged DeSantis was the winner.

Troubled Election

The Florida election was riddled with law violations and signs of incompetence, if not fraud.

Scott had a judge rule in his favor in a suit that alleged that Susan Bucher, the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections (SOE), didn’t allow Scott’s campaign representatives to be close enough so they could monitor Bucher’s staff, who were copying damaged mail-in ballots.

Another judge also confirmed Scott’s allegation that Broward County SOE Brenda Snipes violated Florida public records laws. The county was two days late submitting its results for early and mail-in votes. In the few days after the election, Snipes also provided inconsistent answers on how many ballots were still left to count. Scott then alleged that Broward was “mysteriously finding more votes” to aid his opponent.

On the other side, Nelson had Judge Walker rule partially in his favor, acknowledging that Florida laws have deprived some people of the opportunity to prove the veracity of their rejected mail-in ballots. Those ballots were rejected for having signatures not matching the official record. Walker allowed some voters to confirm their votes by Nov. 17, while the standard deadline was Nov 5.

The judge rejected Nelson’s broader request to automatically accept all mail-in ballots with signature mismatches. There were perhaps 5,000 such rejected votes, the judge estimated.

Referred to Feds

On Nov. 9, the Florida Department of State requested federal prosecutors investigate cases where voters were provided with altered forms to verify their rejected mail-in ballots. The forms instructed people to submit them by Nov. 8, while the correct forms list the lawful deadline of Nov. 5.

Emails and other information released by the State Department as well as Naples Daily News indicated the Florida Democratic Party was spreading the altered forms.

The party was hoping a judge would postpone the deadline for the forms, an unnamed Palm Beach Democratic activist told the paper. Judge Walker indeed did so.

Making or using an altered State Department form is illegal under Florida law.

Reprinted with permission from - The Epoch Times - by Petr Svab

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4 years ago

What a sad chapter in the voting process. Those candidates who refused to concede are following in Hillary Clinton’s footsteps, believing that they “deserved to win” and are better qualified for the position. This is what happens when everybody gets a trophy.

4 years ago
Reply to  Kim

The Democrats are actively working to undermine the public’s confidence in our election process ahead of the 2020 election. Virtually every Democrat that loses an election will claim the election was either unfair or the process fatally flawed. The objective is to allow virtually anyone in the country, whether they are a legal citizen or not, to vote in ALL elections. This will open up our elections to massive fraud that will only benefit the Democrats.

This strategy has been standard practice of every socialist effort to initially gain control of a country for the last 50 years. They abandoned the messy and expensive approach of seizing power through military force for this method, where the populace essentially greases the skids for handing their country over to socialist leaders. Afterwards of course, the elections no longer matter as the ballot boxes are always stuffed by the socialist government to ensure they remain in power.

4 years ago
Reply to  PaulE

Recently on Lou Dobbs’ program, Diamond or Silk referred to the FL elections as practice for “The Art of the Steal” when the 2020 vote comes around. Once in a while, they come up with a good line.
I’m glad Snipes finally resigned…long overdue. Gov. DeSantis needs to take a hard look at improving the wobbly elections process in his state. A good place to start is by throwing the book at Snipes and Bucher. (Screwed up) elections have consequences!
The rules for elections, like the rules for White House pressers, have to be firmed up. It seems as if the “progressives” are intent on blurring all the lines—the southern border, our national sovereignty, the integrity of elections outcomes, Acosta’s lack of decorum, fake news, the disappearing red line… And once they get their hands on our money, poof, it, too, will disappear.
These next two years are pivotal. Conservatives need to present to the people a model for continued success in the form of capitalism and Constitutional freedom, or else we will lose the momentum…the economy, the right to property ownership, private health care, and all the rest.

4 years ago
Reply to  Kim

Just as an FYI about private property ownership and the Dems, you’ll appreciate this one. Comrade Mayor Bill deBlasio of NYC in an upcoming article in New Yorker magazine said “We need to embrace our socialist side.” He then went on to say that ALL property in NYC (yes all private property) should be owned and controlled by the government. So that he, the Mayor, could better decide what is built where, who lives in what buildings, what they pay in rent to the city, etc., etc.. All based on what the government determines an individual needs. In short, pure Marxist communism.

Can you guess the local MSM response to this article so far? If you guessed outrage, then sorry you’re wrong. If on the other hand, if you guessed they all thought this was a wonderful, innovative idea to help achieve both social and economic justice for under-served (code word for progressive Democrat voters) members of society that can’t afford to live comfortably in NYC. That’s right, the local MSM is all for Marxism. When this article begins getting national coverage (deBlasio is also planning a presidential run in 2020) in a few days, it will be amusing and also a bit frightening to see what the national MSM says about deBlasio’s idea.

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