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Status of the Recounts — 4 Updates

1. “Statewide recounts have been ordered for the Senate, governor and agriculture commission races. Gov. Rick Scott and Sen. Bill Nelson each filed lawsuits in the Florida Senate race, with Scott asking the state’s top law enforcement agency to investigate election operations in Broward and Palm Beach counties. Nelson had also filed a lawsuit asking that the deadline for local election officials to file preliminary unofficial vote totals to the state be extended. Broward County needs to recount about 700,000 ballots and Palm Beach County needs to recount about 600,000. At issue is a looming Thursday deadline.”
-USA Today.

2. “The developments added up to a tumultuous political day in Florida. More than half of Florida’s 67 counties began a recount process that’s unprecedented even in a state notorious for settling elections by razor-thin margins … State law requires a machine recount in races where the margin is less than 0.5 percentage points. Once completed, if the differences in any of the races are 0.25 percentage points or below, a hand recount will be ordered.”
-CNBC.

3. The race to count Florida’s votes got even messier on Sunday as Gov. Rick Scott’s campaign filed a handful of lawsuits seeking to give law enforcement custody of election equipment and prevent certain ballots from being included in official results. A recount began Saturday in the U.S. Senate race between Scott, a Republican, and Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson. Scott narrowly leads Nelson by about 0.15 percentage points, well within the state’s 0.25 percent threshold for a manual recount. Scott accused Brenda Snipes, the supervisor of elections in Broward County, of violating state law by refusing to provide information to his campaign about the number of outstanding ballots … in a Sunday statement, Nelson’s campaign accused Scott of trying to stop valid votes from being counted.”
-Sam Levine, HuffPost.

4. “A recount that reverses an initial margin of more than a few hundred votes would be unprecedented in the recent history of American elections. According to an analysis by the nonpartisan group FairVote, which advocates for electoral reforms that make it easier to vote, out of 4,687 statewide elections between 2000 and 2016, just 26 went to a recount. Of those 26, just three recounts wound up changing the initial result of the race.”
-Kirby Wilson, Tampa Bay Times.

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