DeCastro Hopes 8,000 Absentee Ballots Get Tossed Out
There is a new controversy to report tonight surrounding the election campaign for Marion County Sheriff.
One of the three candidates has already dropped out and his replacement is under fire from an opponent.
On Monday Bernie DeCastro filed a court order asking a judge to toss out about 8,000 absentee ballots that were turned in before Chris Blair became the new nominee of the Republican party.
It's considered to be one of the most unusual races in North Central Florida. The race to see who will be the next sheriff.
It's started with a sex scandal that forced former Republican candidate Dan Kuhn to drop out of the race. It continues with the Constitution Party candidate DeCastro filing a written order asking a judge to block some absentee ballots.
"So the ones who voted for Dan Kuhn are having their votes stolen from them and given to Chris Blair. Well that's not fair to them and that's not fair to me," said DeCastro.
On October 10th, the Republican Executive Committee voted to place Blair as Kuhn's replacement.
By that time, about 8,000 ballots already had been turned into the Supervisor of Electons office. If you voted for Kuhn, it automatically went to Blair,
but DeCastro is calling it unconsitutional.
"I can't take your vote and give it to somebody else without your permission. Unconstitutional, you can't do it," said DeCastro.
The week after Blair was elected, we spoke to the Supervisor of Elections Dee Brown.
She told us once a ballot is received by the Supervisor of Elections, it is deemed cast.
It can not be altered or changed nor can they issue another ballot.
Kuhn's name can't even be removed from the ballot.
Since then Blair has been scrambling to get more signs out on the streets of Marion County.
"State laws are in place and they've been in place for a long time so we will just let the attorneys and court system work that out, but I think we are going to be fruitful in the fact that those votes will count for me in the end," said Blair.
Eight- thousand votes could change the outcome of this race.
DeCastro said he believes people vote for the man not for the party when it comes to local races.
"I've had a lot of republicans who voted for Dan Kuhn, who say I am voting for you now," said DeCastro.
DeCastro is also requesting a judge to order Brown to not ceritfy the outcome of the race until it is settled in court.
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