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Florida: Manual Recount to Start for Senate & Agriculture Commissioner

Posted by FactReal on November 15, 2018

Florida elections: Machine recount completed. Manual recount to start for Senate and Agriculture Commissioner races.

Glenna Milberg of WPLG Local 10 (Miami) tweeted the latest numbers:

#FloridaRecount machine recount results official and posted:
Senate race:
Rick Scott over Bill Nelson 12,603 votes (0.15%)
Nikki Fried over Matt Caldwell 5,307 votes (0.06%)
Let the hand recounting begin …


Screenshot 2018-11-15 at 6.17.45 PM

The machine recount for the Governor race is also completed. Republican Ron DeSantis kept his lead at 0.41% over Gillum:
– DeSantis new numbers = 4,075,445
– Gillum new numbers = 4,041,762
So DeSantis leads Gillum by 33,683…that’s 0.41%. No manual recount required.
Republican Ron DeSantis is now Florida’s Governor-elect.


It seems Gillum might go to the courts. Remember, Democrat lawyer Marc Elias said, “We are here to win it.”
USA Today: With Florida recount over, Andrew Gillum’s last chance to become governor rests with the courts:

WASHINGTON – Andrew Gillum will have to rely on the courts if he has any chance to become Florida’s first black governor.

A recount of more than 8 million ballots that ended Thursday afternoon confirmed that Republican Ron DeSantis beat the Democratic Tallahassee mayor in the nationally watched race that galvanized progressives across the country.


But Gillum is not conceding. He and his supporters believe there is still a path to victory: lawsuits that could add more votes in support of him.

“A vote denied is justice denied — the State of Florida must count every legally cast vote,” Gillum said in a statement after the recount totals were released. “As today’s unofficial reports and recent court proceedings make clear, there are tens of thousands of votes that have yet to be counted. We plan to do all we can to ensure that every voice is heard in this process. Voters need to know that their decision to participate in this election, and every election, matters. It is not over until every legally casted vote is counted.”

The deadline for the recount was 3 p.m. Eastern Standard Time Thursday but Palm Beach County, a Democratic stronghold, did not complete its recount. It was the only one of Florida’s 67 counties that failed to do so. A lawsuit filed by Democrats could find more votes for Gillum there, for example.

Timeline for Reporting and Certification of Election Results https://floridaelectionwatch.gov/Timeline

The timeline for county canvassing boards to report results, and to conduct any possible recounts for federal, state, and multicounty races ordered by the Secretary of State, are below. For more information about recounts, visit Timeline for Reporting and Certification of 2018 General Election Results.

* Tuesday, November 6, 2018: Preliminary Election Night Returns (all early voting and all tabulated vote-by-mail results) are due no later than 7:30 PM in the respective county’s time zone and in 45-minute increments (precinct election results) thereafter until all results (except for provisional ballots) are completely reported. Since Florida has two time zones (Central and Eastern), preliminary election night returns will not be released until 8:00 PM Eastern Time.

* Saturday, November 10, 2018: Unofficial Returns are due no later than noon on the 4th day after the General Election. The Secretary of State will order a machine recount if the 1st set of unofficial returns indicates that by a margin of ½ of 1% or less of the total votes cast, a candidate for office was eliminated or defeated, a judicial candidate for retention was retained or not retained, or an issue was approved or rejected.

* Thursday, November 15, 2018: If a machine recount is ordered, Second Unofficial Returns are due no later than 3:00 PM on the 9th day after the General Election. The Secretary of State will order a manual recount if the 2nd set of unofficial returns indicates that by a margin of ¼ of 1% or less of the total votes cast, a candidate for office was eliminated or defeated, a judicial candidate for retention was retained or not retained, or an issue was approved or rejected.

* Sunday, November 18, 2018: Official Returns are due no later than noon on the 12th day after the General Election.
The Elections Canvassing Commission meets on Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at 9:00 AM to certify the Official Returns for federal, state, multicounty and district offices and constitutional amendments/revisions.


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Recount: Judge Sides with Nelson to Fix Signatures on Ballots

Posted by FactReal on November 15, 2018

Tallahassee Democrat: Injunction in Florida recount lawsuit gives mail-in voters time to fix signature on ballot

U.S. Chief Judge Mark Walker issued a preliminary injunction this morning in a lawsuit filed by U.S. Bill Nelson over ballots thrown out because of mismatched signatures — declaring a state law unconstitutional and offering a middle path to give voters a chance to correct their ballots.

“The precise issue in this case is whether Florida’s law that allows county election officials to reject vote-by-mail and provisional ballots for mismatched signatures — with no standards, an illusory process to cure, and no process to challenge the rejection — passes constitutional muster,” Walker said. “The answer is simple. It does not.”

The ruling is a victory for Nelson as he tries to narrow the almost 13,000 vote margin between him and Gov. Rick Scott in a razor-thin Senate race that is currently the subject of multiple lawsuits and is undergoing a machine recount, which will likely progress to a hand recount.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Division of Elections Director Maria Matthews had identified 3,688 vote-by-mail ballots and 93 provisional ballots in 45 counties that were not tabulated because of signature mismatches.

LIST: Illegalities at Election Offices in Broward & Palm Beach (and Shenanigans)
LIST: Democrat Lawsuits Seeking to Change Election Laws in Florida
Bill Nelson Sues Hurricane-Ravaged County for Accepting 158 Emailed/Faxed Votes

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LIST: Illegalities at Election Offices in Broward & Palm Beach (and Shenanigans)

Posted by FactReal on November 15, 2018


(This is partial. We will be updating it as more information comes in.)

(30 min after polls close, every 45 min. updates)

Florida Election Law being Violated by Broward & Palm Beach Election Supervisors:
– – They violated Florida law requiring to upload by 7 p.m. on the day before the election the results of all early voting and vote-by-mail ballots.
– – They failed to follow Florida law which requires that early voting & vote-by-mail are accounted within 30 minutes of polls closing.
– – They violated Florida law which requires updated reports every 45 minutes until results are completely reported.

Law violated by Broward and Palm Beach election offices:
2018 Florida Statute: 102.141 County canvassing board; duties.—

(4)(a) The supervisor of elections shall upload into the county’s election management system by 7 p.m. on the day before the election the results of all early voting and vote-by-mail ballots that have been canvassed and tabulated by the end of the early voting period.

(b) The canvassing board shall report all early voting and all tabulated vote-by-mail results to the Department of State within 30 minutes after the polls close. Thereafter, the canvassing board shall report, with the exception of provisional ballot results, updated precinct election results to the department at least every 45 minutes until all results are completely reported. The supervisor of elections shall notify the department immediately of any circumstances that do not permit periodic updates as required.


Days after the polls closed, Broward and Palm Beach Counties continued counting ballots and neither of the election supervisors wanted to disclose how many ballots still existed or where these ballots came from.

Palm Beach County refused to provide information to the public. They also illegally refused to allow official party representatives into the ballot counting area and forced people to stand behind a glass wall with limited visibility and no ability to hear what is going on.

Days after voting has concluded, Broward was unwilling to disclose records revealing how many electors voted, how may ballots have been canvassed, and how many ballots remain to be canvassed.


Judges side with Rick Scott in lawsuit against Broward & Palm Beach Elections Supervisors
WFTV’s Field Sutton tweeted the judge found “that there has been a violation of the constitution and the public records act in the withholding of public records.”

Judge orders Broward:

A Broward judge ordered the county’s elections chief to turn over to Rick Scott’s campaign for the U.S. Senate an accounting of total ballots cast and a breakdown of votes by category — all due by 7 p.m. Friday.

Circuit Judge Carol-Lisa Phillips also held that Brenda Snipes, Broward’s supervisor of elections, was in violation of Florida public records laws for not fulfilling a request for that information by Scott’s campaign.

Phillips ordered Snipes to turn over the number of all ballots cast in Tuesday’s midterm election, broken down by absentee, early and Election Day votes. She also ordered her to provide the number of ballots still to be counted. […]

“It’s a simple case about access to information,” argued attorney Jason Zimmerman, with the law firm Gray Robinson. “We’re not talking about recounts…. This is not a partisan issue.” […]

Judge Phillips…said Florida public records of ballot totals and breakdowns should be available as soon as the polls close on Election Day. She cited Florida statute and a major South Florida appellate case that said “the court should rule in favor of disclosure rather than secrecy.”

Judge orders Palm Beach:

In the Palm Beach County case, Scott claimed Supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher failed to allow his campaign to inspect potentially damaged absentee ballots mailed in by overseas military members and others. His campaign also asserted that Bucher’s office violated the law by determining whether those mail-in votes were valid, instead of having the county’s canvassing do that.

Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Krista Marx ordered on Friday that any ballot that Bucher or her staff disqualifies will need to be reviewed by the county’s canvassing board. Marx also ordered Bucher to provide a list by 4 p.m. Friday of everyone who voted by provisional ballot.


Palm Beach replaced damaged ballots without witnesses as required by law:
Palm Beach election office filled out new ballots to replace damaged ones without allowing campaign representative to witness the process of creating the new ballot as required by Florida law.


Four days after Election Day, Broward & Palm Beach still not reporting according to Florida law
– As of today, Palm Beach supervisor, Susan Bucher, has yet to comply with the order from the judge.
– On Friday night, Broward election supervisor, Brenda Snipes, appeared to have complied but she submitted data that could not be accessed. “Scott’s lawyers waited outside the Supervisor of Elections office into the evening Friday waiting to get in and do their inspection. Then they told CBS4’s Carey Codd that they were asked to return for their inspection at 10 a.m. Saturday,” CBS-Miami reported.


Tweet: Friday night, during the Canvassing Board meeting in Palm Beach County, lawyers for both Bill Nelson & Andrew Gillum OBJECTED to Palm Beach officials rejecting a ballot from a non-U.S. citizen.


Broward “Accidentally” Mixed Bad Ballots with Valid Ones – Miami Herald


Palm Beach elections supervisor banned media cameras from public ballot-counting & threatens them with arrest. .

Media outlets sued “Susan Bucher and the Palm Beach County Canvassing Board for refusing to allow us to record video while they review ballots in a public meeting,” reported NBC6’s Marissa Bagg.


More than an hour after the noon Saturday deadline to submit all ballots (besides military and overseas ballots), the Broward County Canvassing Board continued counting ballots, in violation of state law.

Video: After multiple objections, the lawyer representing Bill Nelson’s campaign stood up and stated that their campaign is “not objecting” to the illegal activity.

To prevent shenanigans, Rick Scott filed new legal complaints against Broward & Palm Beach election officials:

(None of the complaints calls to invalidate lawfully cast ballots.)
– One of the complaints (PDF) is asking a judge to bar Broward County canvassing board from including ballots counted after Saturday’s noon deadline in the final vote tally, because it is a violation of state law.

– The other filings (PDF) against the Broward and Palm Beach elections supervisors request that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and the county sheriffs impound and secure all voting machines, tabulating devices and ballots when they are not in use until the conclusion of the recount.

Broward Judge Offered Compromise – Both Sides Agreed to Add 3 Deputies to Monitor Recount


Video: Bill Nelson Campaign OK with Breaking the Law by Broward Canvassing Board


LIST: Democrat Lawsuits Seeking to Change Election Laws in Florida


Bill Nelson Sues Hurricane-Ravaged County for Allowing 158 Emailed/Faxed Votes
Why? Bay County is a Republican stronghold.

…more to come…

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Bill Nelson Sues Hurricane-Ravaged County for Accepting 158 Emailed/Faxed Votes

Posted by FactReal on November 15, 2018

But that didn’t apply to Republican areas like Bay County, Florida, which was battered by Hurricane Michael on October 10, 2018 – two weeks before the start of early voting in that county.

Remember, Nelson and other Democrats are trying to legalize illegal/invalid Democrat votes by filing several lawsuits to try to change Florida election laws after losing on Election Day.

Tampa Bay TImes: Bill Nelson sues for fax, email voting records from Bay County

Democrat Bill Nelson has filed a recount-related lawsuit. Again.

The incumbent candidate for U.S. Senate, who has filed two other lawsuits in the past week, is suing Bay County Supervisor of Elections Mark Andersen for copies of vote-by-mail ballots received via e-mail or fax.

Andersen allegedly failed to comply with a records request sent Monday, according to a complaint filed Wednesday.

The supervisor told the Times/Herald on Monday that 11 ballots were accepted by email and 147 ballots were domestically faxed in, though state statute does not allow emailed ballots, and faxing in ballots is only permitted for military and voters overseas. […]

Republican candidate Gov. Rick Scott won roughly 74 percent of the vote in Bay County.

Andersen defended his decision, noting the Bay County voters who were displaced by the storm that rocked the heavily Republican coastal county one month ago.

AccuWeather video: Mexico Beach, FL aerial damage survey after Hurricane Michael (Oct. 18, 2018)

CNN: Hurricane Michael aftermath: Thousands join recovery efforts as many residents remain missing (October 14, 2018)

As residents pick up the pieces after Hurricane Michael, and teams comb through rubble in search of survivors, authorities say it could be weeks or months before a sense of normalcy returns to storm-ravaged Florida. […]

The widespread destruction has left many people living in dire conditions. Residents have been waiting in long lines to collect bottle water and ready-to-eat meals (MREs) at several distribution centers. Helicopters are also airdropping food and water to remote areas. […]

Every school in Bay County damaged, official says
The future of thousands of students also remains unclear, especially those in Bay County, where schools are closed until further notice.
“It’s not going to be a normal school year. There’s nothing normal about where we are right now,” Bay District Schools Superintendent Bill Husfelt told CNN affiliate WMBB.
With the majority of its 26,000 students displaced and many schools deemed not safe because of the damage, officials are discussing alternative ways to get students back to the classroom or provide psychological aid for them.

More: Hurricane Michael: Bay County

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Invasion: Illegal Aliens at San Diego/Tijuana Border

Posted by FactReal on November 14, 2018

The first wave of illegal aliens arrived at the San Diego/Tijuana border on Nov. 13, 2018. The group of 350 migrants (mostly men) traveled in 9 buses from Sonora, Mexico. After arriving in Tijuana, a group of men climbed the U.S. border fence and sat on top of it. One man taunted U.S. border patrol agents by jumping the border fence.


A man taunted U.S. border patrol agents by jumping the San Diego/Tijuana border fence and then running back on Nov. 13, 2018. (USA Today)


Men climbed the U.S. fence at San Diego/Tijuana border on Nov. 13, 2018. (USA Today)

Fox5 San Diego: Video shows group climbing border fence: (Nov.13, 2018; updated Nov. 14, 2018)

SAN DIEGO — People on the Mexican side of the border could be seen climbing the fence near Border Field State Park Tuesday afternoon after part of the Central American migrant caravan arrived in Tijuana.

Several people scaled the fence and sat on top of it. A few jumped or crawled to openings in the fence onto U.S. soil but quickly ran back as Border Patrol agents approached.

Several border agents were seen patrolling the area in trucks, 4-wheelers, a helicopter and on horses.

USA Today: Part of the migrant caravan has arrived (Nov. 13, 2018)

The first wave of the migrant caravan that President Donald Trump has been warning about arrived at the southern border Tuesday, setting the stage for what Trump views as a potentially dangerous confrontation but what the migrants view as their chance to apply for asylum.

Riding on nine buses, with a Honduran flag flying out the window of one of them, the group arrived in Tijuana after a month-long journey…[…]

About 350 caravan members arrived by bus in the border city of Tijuana on Tuesday, marking the first large group of migrants to reach the U.S. border…

But as we reported previously: VIDEOS: Caravan Migrants Want Jobs (Not Asylum).

ABC10 News: People climb on top of border fence as caravan approaches (Nov. 13, 2018):
Video taken Tuesday shows people climbing on top of the border fence near Friendship Park as the migrant caravan approaches.

ABC10 News: Preparations being made at border as caravan approaches (Nov. 14, 2018):
As a migrant caravan heads to the U.S.-Mexico border, officials at San Ysidro Port of Entry are preparing the fencing areas.

Center for Immigration Studies tweeted:

US Customs & Border Protection CBP San Diego tweeted:
“The first group of the migrant caravan arrived at the Tijuana border yesterday afternoon. #CBP has deployed resources to safely secure the area near Imperial Beach. All seeking entry into the U.S. are urged to present themselves at an official Port of Entry.”

Interestingly, the media miss Trump’s tweets.
USA Today:

Trump obsessed over the caravan in the month leading up to the midterm elections, warning voters at rallies about an “invasion,” tweeting about it dozens of times, deploying more than 5,000 active-duty military troops and signing a presidential proclamation to suspend asylum for some caravan members – a move that’s already been challenged in federal court.

But the president has gone silent about the caravan since Election Day, issuing zero tweets about it and signing his asylum proclamation without any news photographers present, as is usually the case when he announces new policies.

Are the mainstream media pushing a conspiracy theory here?
So, Trump is damned if he tweets, and damned if he doesn’t.

Trump tweeted this on November 9, 2018 (3 days after Election Day):
“Presidential Proclamation Addressing Mass Migration Through the Southern Border of the United States”

Invasion: Illegal Aliens at San Diego/Tijuana Border

Eyeball-Tattooed Migrant in “Caravan” is also Violent [Video]

Invasion: “Viva, Honduras!” Yell Caravan Migrants When They Arrive Cities with Flags in Hand

VIDEOS: Caravan Migrants Want Jobs (Not Asylum)

Invasion of Illegals Broke Fence at the Guatemala-Mexico Border (Vids, pics)

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LIST: Democrat Lawsuits Seeking to Change Election Laws in Florida

Posted by FactReal on November 14, 2018

A list of key lawsuits filed during the 2018 Florida recount was published by the Miami Herald yesterday evening. We summarize here reports by the Herald and others.
(This page will be updated as more information comes in.)

Democrat Bill Nelson and Democratic Executive Committee vs. Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner
Filed: Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018
Plaintiffs: Nelson and Dem. Exec. Committee

They want:
– an immediate injunction to force Florida to count as valid votes all mail-in and provisional ballots that are deemed to have a signature mismatch. That would challenge Florida law, which requires officials to reject signatures that don’t match the ones on file.
to extend Saturday’s deadline to canvass ballots until the legal matter is resolved.

The law states: Florida law requires officials to reject signatures that don’t match the ones on file.

Status: Judge Mark Walker is overseeing the case. A hearing is scheduled in Tallahassee for Wednesday afternoon.

League of Women Voters, Common Cause and Joanne Lynch Aye vs. Republican Rick Scott
Filed: Monday, November 12, 2018 in federal court
Plaintiffs: Leftwing groups: League of Women Voters and Common Cause. Joanne Lynch Aye, a Broward voter.
Represented by the group Protect Democracy.

They claim:
– Scott is improperly using his position as governor to influence the recount in the U.S. Senate race in which he is a candidate.
– Scott is using the powers of his office “to benefit himself and his party and to intimidate the local officials and volunteers conducting the vote count.”

They want:
– Rick Scott to recuse himself.
– a judge to file a restraining order against Scott, to prohibit him from using his authority in any way to influence the 2018 Senate race.

[What is their proof?]
[Read: Judges side with Rick Scott in lawsuit against Broward & Palm Beach Elections Supervisors]
[Read: Rick Scott’s New Legal Complaints against Broward & Palm Beach Election Officials]

Status: A hearing is scheduled for Wednesday morning before Judge Mark Walker in Tallahassee.

VoteVets Action Fund and the Democratic National Committee vs. State of Florida
Filed: Monday, November 12, 2018 in federal court
Plaintiffs: VoteVets Action Fund (a progressive veterans’ advocacy group) and Dem. Nat. Committee, and Dem. Senatorial Campaign Committe

They want:
that mail-in ballots that were postmarked before Election Day, but not delivered before the polls closed at 7 p.m., be counted.
– to get post-marked absentees to be counted within 10 days after the election, similarly to overseas military members’ ballots.

They claim: Nelson’s attorney, Marc Elias, cited the example of a few hundred mail-in ballots that were postmarked before Nov. 6 but got stranded at an Opa-locka postal facility, possibly because of an FBI investigation into a Miami-Dade man who sent pipe bombs through the mail before the election.

The law states: According to Florida law, mail-in ballots cannot be counted if they arrive after 7 p.m. on Election Day.

Status: Pending before U.S. District Judge Mark Walker in Tallahassee.

Democrat Jim Bonfiglio vs. Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner
Filed: Tuesday, November 13, 2018 in Leon County Circuit Court.
Plaintiffs: Bonfiglio, who was trailing by 37 votes against Republican Mike Caruso for House District 89. Nelson’s campaign filed a motion to join Bonfiglio’s lawsuit.

They want:
to extend the deadline for the machine recount from 3 p.m. Thursday to next Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018 [see update below]

Status: Circuit Judge Karen Gievers suspended certain deadlines for the recount in Palm Beach County not only for Bonfiglio’s statehouse race, but also for three statewide races, including Nelson’s.

Detzner is trying to move the case to federal court in the Northern District of Florida in Tallahassee.

The law states: Under state law, the machine recounts must be completed by 3 p.m. Thursday and the manual recounts must be completed by noon Sunday.

Update: This case to extend the deadline has been moved to federal court:
Via Tampa Bay Times – Nov. 13, 2018:

An effort to extend the deadline for Palm Beach County’s race to re-tally votes in the state’s tightly contested races before a Thursday deadline has moved to federal court, making an oral state court decision to grant more time moot.

The case was moved Tuesday after a Tallahassee judge told Democratic candidate Jim Bonfiglio during a telephone conference earlier in the day that she would grant an extension. […]

[B]efore Leon County Circuit Judge Karen Gievers could issue the order in writing, attorneys for Secretary of State Ken Detzner filed a notice to move the case to federal court, meaning she no longer had jurisdiction. Detzner’s attorney’s motion was filed at 2:37 p.m. Gievers’ order was issued at 4:49 p.m. […]

[A]bout two hours before she finished writing the order, Detzner’s attorney filed their federal motion arguing that because Bonfiglio argues his U.S. constitutional rights under the Fifth and 14th Amendments were violated, the case should be heard in federal court.


Democrat Bill Nelson for U.S. Senate vs. Ken Detzner et al.
Filed: Tuesday, November 13, 2018
Plaintiff: Nelson’s campaign

Nelson wants:
– a federal judge to extend the deadlines for machine and manual recounts for an unspecified period of time.

The law states: Under state law, the machine recounts must be completed by 3 p.m. Thursday and the manual recounts must be completed by noon Sunday.

Status: U.S. District Judge Mark Walker in Tallahassee scheduled a status conference on the suit for 9 a.m. Thursday.

Update: Bill Nelson Sues Hurricane-Ravaged Bay County for 158 Emailed/Faxed Votes


“In short, Dem lawyers came to Florida to get judges to change Florida elections laws, AFTER the election. That isn’t a strategy to win an election, that is a strategy to steal an election. 4/4”

– Miami Herald, “Here’s a quick guide to the key lawsuits filed so far regarding the Florida 2018 recounts” (Nov. 13, 2018 at 07:24 PM)

Palm Beach illegally making duplicate ballots without submitting to full canvassing board?
Broward submitted vote totals that included ballots disqualified by canvassing board

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