Embattled Broward County Elections Commissioner Brenda Snipes To Resign After Vote Counting Controversy

Dr. Brenda Snipes, Broward County Supervisor of Elections, listens during a canvassing board meeting on November 10, 2018 in Lauderhill, Florida.
Joe Skipper / Getty Images

Broward County elections commissioner Brenda Snipes is resigning in the wake of the controversy surrounding vote counting in the midterm elections, Fox News is reporting. Florida’s votes for governor and U.S. Senate went to a recount, a move that drew criticism from President Trump among others. A judge found Snipes guilty last week of violating Florida open records laws by failing to quickly provide voting records to attorneys for Scott’s Senate campaign. Snipes also admitted to her office having misplaced over 2,000 ballots during the recount. Snipes was first appointed to her position in 2003 by Jeb Bush, who was the governor of Florida at the time. Last week, Bush took to Twitter to express his disapproval of Snipes remaining in her post.

“There is no question that Broward County Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes failed to comply with Florida law on multiple counts, undermining Floridians’ confidence in our electoral process,” Bush tweeted. “Supervisor Snipes should be removed from her office following the recounts.”

This is not the first time that Snipes has been under fire. During the 2016 congressional primary race, Snipes allegedly destroyed ballots without waiting the required 22 months. In addition, some Broward County ballots did not list one of the amendments that was up for a vote, and results from the election were posted on the office’s website before the polls had even closed. In 2012, 1,000 ballots were discovered that had not been counted, and in 2004, 58,000 mail-in ballots were not delivered.

Snipes told reporters on Monday she’s worked in the office “for about 15 years, and I have to say this the first time that this office or I have been under such attacks. There have been issues that haven’t gone the way we wanted it. You can call it a mistake or you can call it whatever you want to call it.”

When asked whether she believed that racism played a part in the criticism towards her, Snipes said that was “probably” the case. She did also admit, however, that it was “time to move on” from her role. An attorney for Broward County’s election office confirmed to the press that Snipes had sent in her resignation and that the resignation will go into effect in January 2019.

A grand total of 8.1 million votes were cast in the state of Florida, and on Sunday, Democratic Senator Bill Nelson conceded to Republican Governor Rick Scott. The state is set to officially certify the results on November 20.