Florida Governor Rick Scott accused the elections supervisor of Palm Beach County of defying court orders to submit “overvoted” and “undervoted” absentee ballots to the Palm Beach County Canvassing Board. Meanwhile, Brenda Snipes, the Broward County supervisor of elections, “appeared” to meet a 7 p.m. deadline to turn over to Scott’s campaign an accounting of ballots that were cast in the county along with a breakdown by category.
Scott filed lawsuits in the two heavily Democratic counties Thursday night, accusing Democrats of a coordinated attempt to “steal” elections.
“I will not stand idly by while unethical liberals try to steal an election,” the governor said at a press conference outside the governor’s mansion, accusing Democrats of “rampant fraud” in his race against incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.).
Friday afternoon, a Florida judge ordered Snipes to allow Republicans to have “immediate” access to requested information about ballots in Broward County.
A Palm Beach circuit court judge also ruled in favor of Scott, granting an injunction ordering Palm Beach County supervisor of elections Susan Bucher to provide the absentee ballots to the canvassing board for a review of the votes before they are counted.
Late Friday evening, the Scott campaign accused Bucher of failing to comply with the order.
“Tonight, Palm Beach County supervisor of elections Susan Bucher announced that she is refusing to comply with a court order to submit overvotes and undervotes to the Palm Beach County Canvassing Board for review under the court-ordered deadline,” said Chris Hartline, a spokesman for the Scott campaign. “Susan Bucher has consistently refused to follow state law and comply with legally required deadlines and regulations. Whether it’s gross incompetence or intentional disregard for the rule of law is irrelevant at this point. Either way, it is embarrassing and unacceptable.”
🚨🚨 BREAKING: Palm Beach County refuses to comply with court order.
Statement here: pic.twitter.com/jPU47KJ25j
— Chris Hartline (@ChrisHartline) November 10, 2018
A lawyer for the Scott campaign told reporters that Snipes had complied with her court order “in some fashion.”
Lawyers for Scott’s camp says Snipes has complied with the court order and 7 p.m. deadline in “some fashion.” They were handed an electronic file and still have to look through it for accounting of votes @BrowardSOE pic.twitter.com/6IsecNcOkY
— Janine Stanwood (@JanineWPLG) November 10, 2018
Florida Politico reporter Marc Caputo also said it “appeared” that Snipes had complied with the order.
After a court ruled she has to turn over ballot tallying info to Gov. Scott’s Senate campaign, Broward Election Supervisor Brenda Snipes appeared to meet tonight’s 7 pm deadline.
Now the Scott campaign is reviewing the response to see if it complied with what the judge ordered
— Marc Caputo (@MarcACaputo) November 10, 2018
UPDATE: Broward County SEO Brenda Snipes has submitted massive file of documents to Scott campaign in accordance with a court order issued earlier today. Scott’s lawyers are going through the documents to see if it complies. #flpol #flgov #flsen
— Ryan Nobles (@ryanobles) November 10, 2018
Meanwhile, Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz tweeted Friday night that he caught officials secretly loading boxes in and out of the Broward supervisor’s office.
BREAKING: I took this video as the riot police removed me from where trucks were secretly loading stuff in/out of Broward Supervisors office. All this while they are violating constitutional rights & a court order! #BrowardCounty pic.twitter.com/DbxyKRde4f
— Matt Gaetz (@mattgaetz) November 10, 2018
Gov. Scott on Fox News’ “Hannity” Friday night said that his campaign was still “looking forward to getting that information” from Broward County after winning the lawsuit.
Scott added that Sen. Nelson’s lawyers were “basically trying to steal this election.”
He said that he’s on track to be certified as the winner of the election on Saturday, subject to a recount.
“Then we’ll have the machinery recount through next Thursday. In the meantime, any votes that come in from the military — which can come in a little bit later — those will be counted,” he said. “If I’m below about 21,000, there will be a manual recount after that.”