Orange County Republicans crack down on mail-in ballots

Orange county Republicans have taken advantage of a new law to create an Elections Integrity Task Force, which aims to verify the validity of mail-in ballots before they’re opened.

The task force has challenged 36 ballots, and 20 ballots have been rejected thus far as Tuesday’s primary approaches. Voters whose issues are non-resolvable or that could only be the result of fraud are thrown out, while those that are rejections stem from issues like signature matching are given an opportunity to resolve the issue. For this primary, voters must complete the “curing” process by Thursday.

This upgraded security is thanks to a new law pushed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, which does much more than just set up the task force. It also requires supervisors to give outside observers “reasonable access” to “review or inspect ballot materials,” including mail-in envelopes and signatures. Much of the concern regarding the 2020 federal election was stoked by the lack of access this law will deter.

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The new law will also limit the number of dropboxes, impose limits on dropping off ballots, and require voters to re-register every two years. These measures also address the chief concerns surrounding election integrity. Limiting dropbox use limits anonymity and therefore boosts security. Constant re-registers prevent people who have moved out of state or have even died from having a vote submitted.

However, some critics don’t see it that way.

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Daniel A. Smith, chair of political science at the University of Florida, claims the law is not really about election integrity and assumes more nefarious intent. “That was the intent, to allow these outside groups with a partisan agenda to intervene.” Smith also argues that these new regulations will “bog down” the process and that the entire issue was unnecessary.

However, according to a new Floridians for Election Transparency Observation Report procured by the Epoch Times, that may not be true. According to the report, 11% of election supervisors held that election security was their number one concern, while another 11% chose corruption. Only 17% had no concerns at all. 39% of supervisors recommended re-registration for voters twice a year, while 28% said once a year. Both of which are more strict than what the new law prescribes.

Given these concerns, and despite the critics, many Floridians support DeSantis’ focus on election security.

Election security has always been a significant issue for DeSantis, and there’s no sign of that changing any time soon.


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Be sure to read: Desantis’ Office of Election Security busts 20 for voter fraud

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