I was thinking about using Vote-By-Mail this year to vote in Florida…
However, I started to get apprehensive and changed my mind when I read an ACLU report that Vote-By-Mail ballots have a higher rejection rate than votes cast at precincts on Election Day and through Early Voting. To make matters worse, younger people and minorities seem to be statistically more likely to be rejected.
After seeing the disaster that is the current Florida election recount, I am very happy that I shredded my Vote-By-Mail ballot and decided to Early Vote in person at the polls.
The amount of time it simply took the Supervisor of Elections to mail my ballot to my house would have made it likely that my ballot would have ended up trapped in one of those mail facilities as reported by Miami New Times, never to be counted.
This happens every year to thousands of ballots because Florida does not count the postmark date, but all ballots must arrive to the Supervisor of Elections by Election Day unless you are active military or overseas.
With margins as tight as they are this year (currently Rick Scott leads Bill Nelson by around 12,000 ballots for U.S. Senator and Nikki Fried leads for Commissioner of Agriculture by around 3,000 votes) – one would think the state would prioritize actually counting ballots and think about the voices of the voters.
That isn’t what is happening here though. Lawyers and politicians (including Governor Rick Scott) from the Republican Party are screaming that there is “voter fraud” with no evidence while groups sue each other like crazy in a panic.
This has once again made Florida the laughing stock of the rest of the United States. We might not have a clear winner until December after all the lawsuits are done.
Where is the leadership?
Arizona calmly counted their votes and aimed to have a transparent process as written above by Arizona Republican Governor Doug Ducey, but can anyone say that has occurred here in Florida?
Florida should make it easier for people to vote and it is now clear that there are numerous problems that make voting both difficult and hard to track in our counties. Watching the recount machines break is not too inspiring. Not to mention some colorful bending of the law.
If the system actually cared about hearing out the voters, maybe we wouldn’t be in this mess in the first place. Do better Florida.