After the election last November, Florida predictably came under scrutiny for problems with voting. St. Lucie County seemed to have had the most problems and was the main focus. The results of several races came into question, most notably, the race between Rep. Allen West and Patrick Murphy for the congressional seat there.
Following a series of partial recounts, court challenges and some old-fashioned fuzzy math, Murphy was declared the winner by a margin somewhere around 1,900 votes. Murphy’s supporters were thrilled, West’s disappointed, but it was hard to find anyone who thought the official result was accurate.
The Florida Department of State conducted an investigation into just what went wrong with the election in St. Lucie County and they have just released their results. You can read it here. It seems more like a script from an episode of the Keystone Cops, than how to hold an election.
This report got minimal coverage. I saw a handful of articles about it. They were brief and most read very much the same. It was a pretty ho-hum moment. Our media and too many of our voters have short attention spans. All the issues that were raised prior to the election last November (and elections before) are again put on the back burner to simmer until the next election. Then, once again, everyone will be up in arms and fighting deadlines to clean up voter rolls and find ways to assure the public that our elections are fair and accurate.
Prior to our last election, Gov. Rick Scott told us that while investigating people who were registered to vote who were ineligible, the State of Florida had actually found people who voted illegally. I was among the group who thought at the time that we might really be about to do something about voter fraud.
I was wrong.
We were never told anything about these illegal voters. We don’t know their names, where or when they voted, what party they registered with and what punishment, if any, they received. The entire subject was simply dropped. And the fact that our media has no interest at all in following up the story makes me suspicious.
Come on, be honest – do you trust our voting process? We all know that early voting and absentee ballots on demand are used to commit voter fraud. Sure, you’ll hear plenty of people say that any restrictions on these are simply the acts of racists who wish to prevent minorities from voting. But do you believe that? Do you even think those saying it believe it?
American Express, MasterCard and Visa conduct billions of transactions across the world, all day, every day. They know more about us than our mothers do. If my credit card is used to purchase a 60″ TV somewhere in New York and an hour later someone tries to use it buy a couple of Ipads in Florida, I’m going to get a phone call from them asking if I am the one making these purchases. Their systems are very efficient. Based on the volume of what they do each day (not just one day a year) the number of errors they make is miniscule.
If our politicians had any real interest in holding clean, honest elections, they would get some of those people from the big credit card companies on board to show how it’s done. But they don’t.
And that ought to make all of us ask them why not.