Broward was following the direction of the state Division of Elections, which initially identified roughly 180,000 potential noncitizens by searching a computer database from the state’s Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. But the drivers’ license list doesn’t automatically update when someone becomes a citizen.
The state whittled that list to more than 2,600 voters and forwarded those names to counties. A Times/Herald analysis of the list found it was dominated by Democrats, independents and Hispanics. The largest number were from Miami-Dade, home to the state’s highest foreign-born population.
There have been a few errors, such as:
Bill Internicola was born in Brooklyn 91 years ago and received a Bronze Star for fighting in the Battle of the Bulge in World War II, but, according to the state of Florida, he may not be a U.S. citizen.
Internicola received a letter in May from the Broward supervisor of elections stating that it received “information from the State of Florida that you are not a United States citizen; however you are registered to vote.”
Well, that’s embarrassing. They’ll just have to put up with statements like:
“Providing a list of names of questionable validity — created with absolutely no oversight — to county supervisors and asking that they purge their rolls will create chaotic results and further undermine Floridians’ confidence in the integrity of our elections,” stated the letter also signed by Florida Democratic Rep.’s Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Frederica Wilson, Corrine Brown and Kathy Castor. They asked Scott to “immediately suspend the purge of voter registration lists” in order to “ensure not one Floridian finds his or her legitimate voting rights callously stripped away.”
Also complaining to Scott was Florida’s only statewide elected Democrat, Sen. Bill Nelson. “Attempts to purge the voter roll so soon after signing one of the nation’s most controversial voting laws raises concern, especially among young and minority voters,” Nelson wrote in a letter to Scott.
Who am I kidding, these are Republicans:
Chris Cate, a spokesman for the state Division of Elections, defended the state’s actions. “It’s very important we make sure ineligible voters can’t cast a ballot,” he said in an email to the Herald on Tuesday.
He said the state continues to identify ineligible voters, saying the state Division of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles has agreed to update information using a federal database that the elections division couldn’t access directly.
“We won’t be sending any new names to supervisors until the information we have is updated, because we always want to make sure we are using the best information available,” Cate wrote. “I don’t have a timetable on when the next list of names will be sent to supervisors, but there will be more names.”
Republican Party of Florida chairman Lenny Curry slammed Nelson for practicing the “worst kind of politics.”
“Sen. Nelson not only asks our public servants to ignore the threat to electoral integrity, but he implies those who meet their legal obligation to ensure honest elections are being discriminatory,” he said in a statement. “Nelson’s distortions and willingness to pit people against each other based on race demonstrates the worst kind of politics.”
Taking a 91 year old WWII war hero off the voter rolls is just not that important. Republicans seem to care much more about theoretical voter fraud than real life people. And the fact that the list was dominated by Democrats, Independents and Hispanics is all just a coincidence I’m sure.