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Mailer mixup: Elections officials fault Scott mailing

Two Tampa Bay election supervisors criticized as "inaccurate" and "incorrect" a mailer by Gov. Rick Scott's campaign committee that tells voters that their absentee ballots should have arrived by now.  The attention-grabbing mailer by Scott's Let's Get to Work committee has the words "Voter Alert!" and the statement, "By now, you should have received your absentee ballot."

Not true, elections official say. The first day that in-state absentees can be mailed is Tuesday, Sept. 30. They can be mailed as late as Oct. 7. The last thing county elections officials want is to be inaccurately blamed for not sending ballots to their voters. 

Hillsborough Supervisor of Elections Craig Latimer issued a news release that said "Their information is incorrect." He plans to mail more than 150,000 absentees to Tampa-area voters on Oct. 6.  

On Twitter, Pasco Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley showed the mailer and said: "Here is the inaccurate flyer that voters throughout FL rec'd with incorrect info from #LetsGetToWork."

Yet another tweet Monday from Seminole County Supervisor Mike Ertel: "Absentee ballots to local voters have not been mailed. Florida voters get ballots about one month before Election Day."

Scott campaign spokeswoman Jackie Schutz issued this statement: "Voting by mail is important, and we hope that all voters will receive their vote-by-mail ballots promptly." The campaign wouldn't comment on the record as to why it sent voters inaccurate information, but it's possible that the mail pieces simply reached Florida households sooner than expected.

Polls show the race between Scott and Charlie Crist is in the low-to-mid single digits, and voting by mail is rapidly increasing in popularity in Florida. Both parties and campaigns aggressively "chase" voters who ask for mail ballots to make sure the ballots are returned promptly.

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