Trump suggests Senate Seat is Being Stolen from Rick Scott by Fusion GPS. pic.twitter.com/5OIhMNKcws
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) November 9, 2018
Courtesy of Mother Jones:
On Thursday night, Florida Gov. Rick Scott, who is locked in a razor-thin Senate race with incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson, falsely accused Democrats of trying to “steal this election” and called on law enforcement to monitor the counting of ballots in two of the state’s most Democratic counties. He also filed a lawsuit, along with the Republican Party, seeking access to Broward County’s ballot records. His unsubstantiated allegations of “rampant fraud” were amplified by top Republicans, including President Donald Trump, who tweeted, “Law Enforcement is looking into another big corruption scandal having to do with Election Fraud in #Broward and Palm Beach.”
Scott’s lead over Nelson is about 15,000 votes, and the race appears headed for a recount, along with the race for governor. Republicans are angry over late ballots being counted in Palm Beach County and Broward County, the latter home to heavily Democratic cities north of Miami like Fort Lauderdale. But while Broward’s election supervisor, Brenda Snipes, who was appointed by former Gov. Jeb Bush, has been criticized for her handling of a past election, there is absolutely no evidence that she is “creating ballots,” as Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani tweeted, or rigging the count to favor Democrats. Trump also suggested that Fusion GPS, the opposition research firm that helped put together a dossier on Trump’s Russia connections, was somehow involved in an effort to steal the Florida election.
“There’s just no evidence right now that anything illegal has happened,” writes Politico’s Florida Playbook. “The vote totals are simply changing as more ballots from Democratic counties are being uploaded.” On the contrary, the call by the governor for law enforcement to monitor the counting of ballots in his Senate race seems designed to prevent every eligible ballot from being fairly counted.
Now one would think that if there were suspicion of voter fraud, that the Republicans would welcome a recount, but that is not exactly how they see it and seem determined to name Scott as the Senator-elect before the recount takes place.
That, of course, would make it especially awkward if indeed he loses the election, which could possibly be the point as it might also give him more leverage to challenge the results.
Look, I agree Florida elections are a giant mess, but then again we have known that since the 2000 presidential race, and yet nobody has done anything substantial to fix it.