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Top FL County Election Official Illegally Let People Vote Over Fax, Email

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The top election official in heavily Republican Bay County allowed residents displaced by Hurricane Michael to vote by email and fax, contrary to Florida law.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum and others are expressing outrage at the special provision made for these voters.

The Miami Herald reported that Bay County Supervisor of Elections Mark Andersen said on Monday that 11 ballots were accepted by email and 147 were faxed in, though Florida law only permits those serving in the military overseas to use these methods.

Andersen said all the ballots he accepted were verified by signature and voters were required to sign an oath.

“If I can validate it with a signature, the ballot is there, how is that different than a ballot that comes in through the post office?” the election official said.

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“When devastation happens, leaders rise to the top and make decisions,” he added. “I will not change my mind on this, not for these voters.”

Bay County, located in Florida’s Panhandle, includes Mexico Beach and Panama City Beach, some of the areas hit hardest by Hurricane Michael in mid-October.

According to the Herald, Gov. Rick Scott issued an executive order on Oct. 18 allowing election supervisors in Bay County and other counties impacted by the storm to extend early voting days and designate more early voting locations, but did not make provision for voting by fax or email.

Speaking at an African American church in Boynton Beach in Palm Beach County, north of Miami, on Monday night, Gillum expressed outrage that Anderson broke election laws and allowed these approximately 150 Floridians to vote by fax or email, The Associated Press reported.

Do you think Floridians displaced by Hurricane Michael should be allowed to vote by email?

“These are the stories that we know,” Gillum said. “Imagine the ones that we don’t.”

Meanwhile, Gillum along with Florida Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson continue to call for all the votes to be counted in heavily Democratic Broward and Palm Beach counties, despite election officials in both missing state mandated deadlines in providing vote tallies.

President Donald Trump tweeted late last week, “Mayor Gillum conceded on Election Day and now Broward County has put him ‘back in play.’ Bill Nelson conceded Election — now he’s back in play!? This is an embarrassment to our County and to Democracy!”

Gillum responded, “What’s embarrassing to democracy is not counting every vote — and you, of course. Count every vote.”

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Gillum added in another tweet, “Mr. @FLGovScott — counting votes isn’t partisan — it’s democracy.”

Republican Ron DeSantis currently has a lead of over 33,600 votes in the governor’s race, while Gov. Rick Scott leads Nelson by 12,512 votes.

Both races are currently in the midst of mandatory recounts.

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Birthplace
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Nationality
American
Honors/Awards
Graduated dean's list from West Point
Education
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith




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