Election supervisors dispel election conspiracies

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCJB)-- As the recount for three statewide races enters day three we spoke with representatives from both parties and elections supervisors to try and dispel some of the rumors flying from both sides of the aisle.

We’ll start with the claim that tens of thousands of ballots mysteriously appeared after election day.

The rumor was perpetrated by Governor Rick Scott, but elections experts say it’s unfounded.

“These ballots were all delivered properly to the Supervisor of Elections office prior to the 7 pm deadline,” said Former Leon County Elections Supervisor Ion Sancho.

Some on the left have argued mail ballots undelivered by a post office in Miami-Dade should be counted.

Once again elections supervisors say that’s not the way it works.

“There are many numbers of ballots that are subject to being voted by mail that don't get received by the supervisor in time under state law and are not counted,” said President of the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections, Ron Labasky.

Then there’s the 20 or so invalid ballots in Broward County that were counted after being mixed in with more than 100 legitimate ones.

Republicans including the Attorney General say it suggests fraud, but supervisors say it was a mistake, not malice.
“Human error is a much better reason for a lot of the problems that we're seeing,” said Sancho.

Two voting rights groups have called on Governor Rick Scott to recuse himself from the elections canvassing commission, which will certify the results, because of his personal involvement in the election, which includes at least 5 lawsuits to date.

Common Cause filed a lawsuit in Federal Court demanding Rick Scott be removed from the Elections Canvassing Commission Monday afternoon after their calls for him to recuse himself went unanswered.

One thing both Republicans and Democrats agree on is that throughout this election, there are plenty of lessons to be learned.

“Elections aren't normally this close so there's a lot of things to look at to tighten up the election law and perhaps make it better,” said Evan Power, Chair of the Republican Party of Leon County.

According to Democratic strategist Steve Schale, the fixes revolve around vote by mail.

“Absentee ballot standardization, mail dates for absentee ballots,” said Schale.

Many of those issues will have to be addressed by the courts, the first of which will be heard Wednesday.

A Federal judge will hear oral arguments in a lawsuit filed by Democrats that argues mail ballots thrown out for mismatched signatures should be counted because there is no uniform standard through the state.