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How Rick Scott’s noncitizen voter purge started small and then blew up

Florida’s latest elections controversy began in the smallest of ways: a five-minute chat a year ago between Gov. Rick Scott and his top election official.

At the time, about February 2011, the newly elected governor was touring the office run by then-Secretary of State Kurt Browning, who put on a presentation about Florida’s voting rolls and elections issues for the political newcomer.

That’s when Scott — a Republican who campaigned as an immigration hardliner — asked a simple question: How do we know everyone on the rolls is a U.S. citizen?

“I said it was an honor system,” Browning recalls. “That’s how it’s always been done.”

“People don’t always tell the truth,” Browning recalled Scott saying.

So Browning decided to find out how many noncitizens were actually on the rolls.

Now, more than a year later, the effort that stemmed from that chat has produced three federal lawsuits, widespread suspicion and bitter partisanship, echoing the recriminations of Florida’s controversial 2000 elections that still haunt the state today.

The latest suit was filed Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Justice, which claims Florida’s purge program violates two federal voting laws. Florida denies the charges.

To those on the political left, the voter purge looks like a concerted effort by Republicans to get an edge at the ballot box. But in the words and deeds of Browning, Scott and elections officials in Florida, the purge looks like a poorly managed program that became unexpectedly controversial to an administration filled with political newcomers.

More here

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/06/12/2846319/how-rick-scotts-noncitizen-voter.html#storylink=cpy


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Robin Osgood

Just wondering if Gov. Rick Scott realizes waiting until this late of a date to do this purge gives more fuel to those who believe that our system is in such dire threat that we need the U.N. to monitor the presidential election?

Grant it, there have been systemic problems the last three presidential elections. What hasn't helped is three states really messed up the Republican primaries this year which leaves numberous of us pause to wonder what we have in store to look forward on November 6 if the likes of Iowa and Maine messed things up so badly in their primaries.

So now Gov. Scott is giving change.org more reason and proof when they present their petition that is circulating at www.change.org/petition/u-n-supervise-the-2012-presidential-election why we need them to.

Good going.

Rilda Courtright

The Honor System??? You've got to be kidding! Just how many illegal aliens, non-residents &"dead people" are voting in the Florida. I'd say, MANY!!


Do you simply believe that "many" ineligible people are voting, or do you have proof? My beef has always been that you need to prove there is a problem first, and show me how you definitively determine that a voter is not eligible. Only then should you proceed with a purge. If you unfairly purge an eligible voter, the whole democratic process is put in jeopardy!


“People don’t always tell the truth,” Browning recalled Scott saying.



Rick Scott said "people don't always tell the truth!" Oh I've got to clean the coffee off my monitor now.

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