The Florida recount continues with both sides trying to win the war of words. During the investigation, more irregularities appeared as authorities further investigated votes in the states.
Broward Chief Circuit Judge Jack Tuter told both Republicans and Democrats to tone it down and stop eroding public confidence in the election. On Monday, President Trump jumped into the fray with a strongly-worded tweet about the Florida election.
Trump wrote, “The Florida Election should be called in favor of Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis in that large numbers of new ballots showed up out of nowhere, and many ballots are missing or forged. An honest vote count is no longer possible-ballots massively infected. Must go with Election Night!”
The AP reported it is unclear what Trump meant when he wrote that ballots are missing and forged in the state elections. However, new revelations came to light including the fact that Elections Supervisor Mark Andersen let 150 displaced hurricane victims vote by email in Republican-dominated Bay County, which is against state law. Plus, forgetting to push a button restarted the recount in Manatee County after officials were nearly a quarter of the way through it.
Though a judge said Republicans presented no evidence of wrongdoing in Broward County, more sheriff’s deputies went to guard voting machines and ballots.
Just did a four hour shift as an observer of the #FloridaRecount in Palm Beach County in a warehouse where all the ballot sheets are boxed and stored. Each ballot is checked by two people and observed by a Democrat and a Republican. It goes all day and night. pic.twitter.com/90ZeGglLYh
— Barbara Malmet (@B52Malmet) November 12, 2018
At an emergency hearing, Judge Tuter said, “If someone in this lawsuit or someone in this county has evidence of voter fraud or irregularities at the supervisor’s office, they should report it to their local law enforcement officer. If the lawyers are aware of it, they should swear out an affidavit, but everything the lawyers are saying out there in front of the elections office is being beamed all over the country. We need to be careful of what we say. Words mean things these days.”
The judge noted that so far nobody had submitted evidence of wrongdoing in this situation, and instead he asked both sides to reach a compromise, which resulted in extra sheriff deputies guarding voting machines in Broward County.
For elections in Florida with less than 0.5 percent margin, the law requires a recount. In the case of Republican Governor Rick Scott and Democrat incumbent Bill Nelson, the margin is 0.14 percent. Meanwhile, the contested governor’s race, Republican Ron DeSantis leads Democrat Andrew Gillum by 0.41 percent in unofficial results.
The original recount must be completed by Thursday, which is the deadline. However, according to the Tampa Bay Times, several counties believe they will not complete the recount by the deadline. Once the recount is complete, any race where the margin is 0.25 percentage points or less, the votes must be hand counted.
For many, these Florida election recount details feel all too familiar because of the last major recount during the 2000 presidential election.