Law & the Courts

Scott Campaign Asks Secretary of State to Accept Broward Recount Despite Missed Deadline

Florida Governor Rick Scott speaks at a campaign rally with President Trump in Estero, Fla., October 31, 2018. (Carlos Barria/Reuters)

Update 3:23p.m.: The Florida Department of State confirmed in a statement to National Review that they will include the additional ballots awarded to Scott during the machine recount as part of the manual recount that will conclude Sunday at noon.

Florida governor Rick Scott’s Senate campaign has asked Secretary of State Ken Detzner to validate Broward County’s machine-recount vote totals despite election officials’ having turned in the recount numbers two minutes after the 3 p.m. deadline.

The recount awarded 469,949 votes to incumbent Democratic senator Bill Nelson and 210,513 votes to Scott, a 779-vote improvement for the Republican candidate relative to the initial count.

“The law is very clear,” the Scott campaign’s recount attorney, Tim Cerio, wrote in a letter to Detzner. “When a canvassing board completes a recount process by the statutory deadline, as it did today in a public meting in Broward County, those results are valid. Any administrative failure after it finishes, is irrelevant to whether or not the canvassing board completed its process.”

Should Broward officials fail to meet the Sunday deadline for the manual recount currently underway, the official total will revert to whatever count was last received by Detzner’s office. Unless Detzner is sympathetic to Cerio’s appeal, he will resort to using the initial count, rather than the machine recount.

Joe D’Alessandro, the director of elections for Broward County, told reporters Thursday that he missed the deadline due to his unfamiliarity with the Department of State website used to submit votes.

“Basically, I just worked my a** off for nothing,” D’Alessandro said. “We uploaded to the state two minutes late so the state has chosen not to use our machine-recount results. They are going to use our first unofficial results as our second unofficial results.”

Scott, however, has accused embattled Broward elections officials of intentionally missing the deadline to ensure he didn’t benefit from the additional 779 votes awarded to him in the machine recount.

Most Popular


How States Like Virginia Go Blue

So this is what it feels like to live in a lab experiment. As a native Virginian, I’ve watched my state come full circle. The last time Democrats enjoyed the amount of power in the Old Dominion that they won on Tuesday, I was entering middle school in Fairfax County. In 1993 the governor was a Democrat, one ... Read More
Books, Arts & Manners

Why Study Latin?

Oxford professor Nicola Gardini urges people to read and study Latin. He believes that Latin is the antidote for the modern age, which seems transfixed by the spontaneous, the easy, and the ephemeral. His new book, Long Live Latin: The Pleasures of a Useless Language, argues that Latin combines truth and ... Read More