Florida Secretary of State Changes Mind, Will Investigate ‘Unacceptable’ Voting Lines

Secretary of State Ken Detzner (R-FL) plans to investigate the state’s dysfunctional elections this year, which led to marathon lines and the rejection of countless legitimate votes. Detzner told the Ethics and Elections Committee on Tuesday that he will send a special team to investigate problems in 5 so-called “under-performing” counties over the next several days.

Among these “under-performing” counties is Miami-Dade, where some voters were still waiting to vote after midnight. The Secretary speculated the “multitude of issues” could range from a lack of early voting sites to excessively long ballots. Detzner suggested that the 62 other counties that had smoother elections “did it right” but stopped short of blaming the 5 that did not:

REPORTER: So what are the criteria that you are going to be using what is a high performing versus an under-performing county?DETZNER: Well that’s a very general term, and I don’t want to get into specifics of under-performing. Long lines are unacceptable to the citizens of Florida. That’s one of the major issues we’re going to address.

Detzner has changed his tune since the election’s immediate aftermath, when he insisted that he had no regrets about the disastrous election and claimed that the long lines meant voters actually “liked the voting hours.” Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL), who restricted early voting days and enacted other vote-suppressing legislation, also defended his election processes and telling reporters repeatedly that “we did the right thing.” Florida GOP members recently admitted that the new election laws were in fact intended to disenfranchise Democratic and minority voters.