Update: Scott wants judge to impound voting machines
The Latest on the Florida election recount of 2018 (all times local):
Gov. Rick Scott wants law enforcement to impound Broward County’s voting machines and ballots when they’re not being used during the Florida recount.
Lawyers for Scott’s Senate campaign were asking Circuit Chief Judge Jack Tuter on Monday to give custody of all voting machines and ballots to the Broward Sheriff’s Office and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement whenever they’re not being used.
The recount is already secured by police outside and deputies inside, with both parties and campaigns monitoring the entire process. Once calibration tests are completed on the ballot scanning machines, vote-counting will continue around the clock. So it’s unclear when any machines or ballots would be “not in use.”
Scott says Elections Supervisor Brenda Snipes has a history of violating state law during vote-counting.
The recount was triggered because Scott led Democratic incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson by just 0.14 percentage points.
Mishaps, protests and litigation are overshadowing the vote recount in Florida’s pivotal races for governor and U.S. Senate, recalling the 2000 presidential fiasco in the premier political battleground state.
All 67 counties face a Thursday deadline to complete recounts. Half began last weekend amid early drama focused on Broward and Palm Beach counties, home to large concentrations of Democratic voters.
The recount was ordered Saturday after unofficial results showed Republican former U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis leading Democratic Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum by 0.41 percentage points for governor. Scott’s lead over Democratic incumbent Bill Nelson was 0.14 percentage points for the Senate.
The recount is unprecedented even in a state notorious for settling elections by razor-thin margins.