TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Tampa Bay space elections supervisor is sounding the alarm about suspected wide-spread fraud within the push to increase playing in Florida.
Pinellas Supervisor of Elections Julie Marcus says her workplace is inundated with possible phony petitions for a proposed constitutional modification. As 8 On Your Aspect came upon, it might have a ripple impact on different poll initiatives in November.
“That is unacceptable. This shouldn’t be part of our course of,” Marcus stated. “I took a batch of 100, I needed to undergo them personally, and never a single one among these was legitimate.”
Marcus says her workplace is flagging a whole bunch of the possible phony petitions for a proposed modification to increase on line casino gaming. The signed inexperienced varieties are imagined to mirror the need of actual voters, supporting a change to our state’s structure.
However Marcus says it seems a bunch of prison petition gatherers are forging signatures.
In keeping with a state memo, that is occurring in a minimum of six counties in Florida.
“These will not be the voices of our voters,” Marcus stated. “What’s taking place is you probably have an individual creating individuals and filling out varieties and pretending as if they’re voters.”
Marcus has introduced in additional assist. Her staff has been working time beyond regulation to approve legitimate petitions by the authorized deadline of Feb. 1, 2022.
She says she’s doing all the things attainable to keep away from a ripple impact on different poll initiatives in November.
“These voters who did it correctly, these petition teams that did it correctly, are put again on the again burner as a result of going by means of a petition that isn’t legitimate takes longer,” stated Marcus.
Proper now, the Florida Division of Regulation Enforcement together with native prosecutors are investigating. However might extra be achieved to right away cease these alleged criminals?
The reply is sure.
Final month, in a three-page memo, Secretary of State Laurel Lee’s workplace informed Lawyer Basic Ashley Moody’s workplace, “it might be acceptable and useful to voters… to ban the circulators at challenge from persevering with to flow into petitions and committing extra fraudulent acts towards voters.”
However proper now, the circulators at challenge are nonetheless allowed to work. Whereas AG Moody has the ability, by way of an injunction, to stop this, she hasn’t utilized it, but.
8 On Your Aspect Investigator Mahsa Saeidi contacted the AG’s Workplace for solutions. A spokeswoman launched the next assertion:
“The Lawyer Basic’s Workplace continues to satisfy with the Division of State and can proceed to evaluate all obtainable cures beneath regulation. This matter has been referred to the Florida Division of Regulation Enforcement for investigation. For extra data, please contact FDLE. As soon as their evaluate is full, the Workplace of Statewide Prosecution will evaluate their findings.”
When you’ve got a narrative for Mahsa to analyze, please ship an e mail to MSaeidi@WFLA.com.