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'Infected?' Accusations of Election Fraud as Florida Races to Meet Recount Deadline

11-13-2018
Broward Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes

The recount in Florida is stirring up constant controversy as Republican Gov. Rick Scott's lead has shrunk down to just 13,000 votes over incumbent Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson.

Sixty-seven counties are racing to recount more than 8 million ballots ahead of Thursday's deadline.

"With the (outdated) election equipment that we have, the potential of conducting all of these is impossible, it is impossible," said Supervisor of Elections for Palm Beach County Susan Bucher said.
 
Meanwhile, Gov. Scott claims Sen. Nelson is trying to steal the election through fraud, citing irregularities and failure to comply with the law in Broward County.

President Donald Trump agreed, tweeting the election is "infected" and calling for an end to the recount.

"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 president wrote.

Florida Circuit Chief Judge Jack Tuter ruled there is no evidence of fraud and called on both sides to "ramp down the rhetoric."

But the Republican Party disagrees with that assessment, accusing Broward Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes of "incompetence and gross mismanagement" after the recount was delayed for hours Sunday because of a problem with one of the tabulation machines.

"I think there's enough lack of transparency, enough missed deadlines to raise questions about how they, in fact, found 83,000 votes after the deadline was established for them to at least give a vote count," Ken Blackwell of the Family Research Council told CBN News' "Faith Nation."

Snipes, for her part, is defending herself, saying, "I think the lawsuits disperse my character. I have to say this is the first time this office and I have been under attack. If we make mistakes, we own them."

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush didn't mince words, flatly stating that Snipes should be fired for incompetence.

"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 on Monday. "Supervisor Snipes should be removed from her office following the recounts."

Meanwhile, in the Florida governor's contest, Republican former Rep. Ron DeSantis is still leading Democratic Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum by 0.41 percent. And Gov. Scott's lead over Sen. Nelson has shrunk to a mere 0.14 percent.

The machine recount must be completed by Thursday. After that, if the differences in the Senate or governor's races are less than 0.25 percent, then a hand recount will be ordered and the process starts all over again.

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