Florida Democrats on Saturday were put on notice and told by the state's new voter protection director to expect a recount during next year's presidential election.
Brandon Peters, who was hired by the state party in May, told a packed room of Democratic activists gathered in Orlando that there will be teams of volunteers trained in how to monitor county canvassing boards for recount problems around the state.
"We are going to be prepared," Peters said at the party's Leadership Blue 2019 meeting.
Florida infamously captured national headlines after the 2000 presidential election. Last year, the state was once again under the spotlight after a recount was needed in three statewide races. The recounts exposed a network of ballot problems in Broward and Palm Beach counties that caused state, local and national leaders to call out the Sunshine State as an electoral basket case. The recounts also led to the resignation of Broward County's embattled elections chief Brenda Snipes.
The Florida Democratic Party is the second state Democratic party in the nation to hire a voter protection director, behind the Georgia Democratic Party.https://www.foxnews.com/politics/florida-asks-us-to-investigate-irregularities-as-state-races-toward-recount-deadline
FLORIDA ASKS FOR US INVESTIGATION AS STATE RACES TOWARD RECOUNT DEADLINE
The Florida Democratic Party is the second state Democratic party in the nation to hire a voter protection director, behind the Georgia Democratic Party.
Peters said by July 2020 he hopes to have 15,000 lawyers and volunteers in place around the state to address any voter problems.
Those problems include making it difficult for ex-convicts to register after Florida voters last year passed a constitutional amendment restoring voting rights to as many as 1.4 million felons and creating earlier deadlines for mail-in ballots, Peters said.
Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis has pledged to sign a bill requiring repayment of financial obligations before felons' voting rights are restored.
Other nonelectoral changes in Florida could have consequences for voters, such as the rollout this month of new drivers' licenses with magnetic strips removed, Peters said.
Voters often check in at polls where information on the strip is run against a database for ID verification. Without that, poll workers may have to resort to manually checking the ID against paper rolls, creating long lines, Peters said.
The state party is coordinating with the Democratic National Party to set up a tool to track election problems in real time. There also will be a hotline for volunteers to call in problems, Peters said.
"If you see something, say something," Peters said. "Once we are aware of the problem, we will do something about it."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.