The Florida “Safeguard the Election” Act.

Introduction:

The election process in this country, and many states within this country, has become obsolete, and subject to fraud, abuse, duplication, false ballots, multiple ballots from the same person, ballot stuffing, crime, corruption, scandal, manipulation, willful misconduct, manufactured ballots, ballots created and added after the polls have closed and deadlines have passed, judge shopping to suspend election laws, changes to election laws after the election, and subject to corrupt election officials and other criminal actions resulting ultimately in stolen elections.  To address this crisis, provide voter identification and verification, and restore public confidence in a secure and verifiable, accurate vote count, changes in the election laws of Florida must be accomplished.  Hopefully this can serve as a model for all states, and for federal elections.

 

Voter Registration;

A procedure is needed to check to make sure voters registering in Florida are not registered anywhere else in Florida.  Therefore a statewide government computer databank connecting all the County Supervisor of Elections offices needs to be created.  It would be desirable to participate in a national voter registration databank that all States participate in as well, but that may be for the future.

 

Here is the current law on registering to vote in Florida from the Santa Rosa County Supervisor of Elections website:

Register to Vote

You can apply to register to vote at any time. However, the registration books will be closed on the 29th day prior to each election and will remain closed until after the election. You must be registered for at least 29 days before you can vote in an election.
A person may become a registered voter only if that person:

  1. Is at least 18 years of age
  2. Is a citizen of the United States
  3. Is a legal resident of the State of Florida
  4. Is a legal resident of the county in which that person seeks to be registered
  5. Registers pursuant to the Florida Election Code

The following persons, who might be otherwise qualified, are not entitled to register to vote:

  1. A person who has been adjudicated mentally incapacitated with respect to voting in this or any other state and who has not had his or her right to vote restored pursuant to law.
  2. A person who has been convicted of any felony by any court of record and who has not had his or her right to vote restored pursuant to law.
  3. A person who is not registered may not vote.

Uniform statewide voter registration application:

Can be used to register to vote, change addresses, change party affiliation, change name, replacement of a voter information card or signature update.

***  The recent passage of a Constitutional Amendment to let felons vote will change the above section.

 

Here are the current I.D. forms accepted to register to vote.  Again from the Santa Rosa County Elections website:

The following is a list of approved identifications.  A picture and signature identification is required.  Any combination of these documents may be presented to fulfill the photo and signature requirements.

  •  Florida Driver’s License
  •  Florida I.D. issued from the DMV
  •  U. S. Passport
  •  Military I. D.
  •  Student I.D.
  •  Retirement Center I. D.
  •  Public Assistance I.D.
  •  Neighborhood Association I.D.
  •  Debit or Credit Card
  •  Veteran health I.D. card issued by the United States Department of Veteran Affairs.
  •  A license to carry a concealed weapon or firearm issued pursuant to s. 790.06.
  • Employee I.D. card issued by any branch, department, agency, or entity of the Federal Government, the state, a county, or a municipality.

This list should be changed:

Removed from the list would be: Student I.D., Retirement Center I,D., Public Assistance I.D., Neighborhood Association I.D., Debit or Credit Card, as these should no longer be considered sufficient proof of citizenship and eligibility to vote.  Valid forms of I.D. would be:  U.S. Passport.  Naturalization papers with photograph.  Birth Certificate when accompanied by any of the above I.D.’s remaining with a government photo I.D..

 

The following current Voter Bill of Rights shall be published on every ballot:

Voter’s Bill of Rights

Each registered voter in this state has the right to:

  • Vote and have his or her vote accurately counted.
  • Cast a vote if he or she is in line at the official closing of the polls in that county.
  • Ask for and receive assistance in voting.
  • Receive up to two replacement ballots if he or she makes a mistake prior to the ballot being cast.
  • An explanation if his or her registrations or identity is in question.
  • If his or her registration or identity is in question, cast a provisional ballot.
  • Written instructions to use when voting, and, upon request, oral instructions in voting from elections officers.
  • Vote free from coercion or intimidation by election officers or any other person.
  • Vote on a voting system that is in working condition and that will allow votes to be accurately cast.

Voter Responsibilities: Each registered voter in this state should:

  • Familiarize himself or herself with the candidates and issues.
  • Maintain with the office of the supervisor of elections a current address.
  • Know the location of his or her polling place and its hours of operation.
  • Bring proper identification to the polling station.
  • Familiarize himself or herself with the operation of the voting equipment in his or her precinct.
  • Treat precinct workers with courtesy.
  • Respect the privacy of other voters.
  • Report any problems or violations of election laws to the supervisor of elections.
  • Ask questions, if needed.
  • Make sure that his or her completed ballot is correct before leaving the polling station.

NOTE TO VOTER:
Failure to perform any of these responsibilities does not prohibit a voter from voting.

***  Sections to be removed from the Voter’s Bill of Rights, per sections in this legislation include:  “If his or her registration or identity is in question, cast a provisional ballot.”  This would be eliminated by this bill because any question on identification would prevent voting until the question is cleared up.

“Bring proper identification to the polling station” would be taken out because polling stations per this legislation would be eliminated.  All other provisions mentioning a “polling station” would be modified to read “elections office.”

The “Note to Voter” would also be removed because the above voter responsibilities should prohibit a voter from voting.

 

Bill Introduction:

The purpose of this bill is to improve the elections procedures in Florida, so that no more contentious recounts happen again, and so that voters know the system is secure, only votes that count will be counted, and no votes will be “found” until a desired result from one interested party or group is achieved.  There are options for counties to consider and find what works best for them within the secure framework this bill creates.  This will be an ongoing process as elections test these procedures so amendments and improvements are expected, so long as the security and confidence in the election system is maintained.

 

One possible option:

For smaller counties one option is to have all voting take place at the Supervisor of Elections Office, the same place where everyone registers. That way the registration can be checked at the time of voting by the same certified credentialed government elections people who registered the voter.  The procedure is that people come in to vote, their registration and eligibility is verified, they are given a ballot, and they vote right then.

No official ballots can leave the Supervisor of Elections Office except absentee and mail-in.  All official ballots must be numbered and accounted for.  No ballot will leave the Election Supervisors Office after the vote has been cast.  Persons may be subject to searches for ballots and ballot envelopes, including campaign officials, observers, and government employees of the Supervisor of Elections office.  All procedures and transactions will be videotaped.

Using this procedure there will no longer be polling places.  All voting will take place at and through the County or City Supervisor of Elections Office.

Election materials and sample ballots can be brought to the Supervisor of Elections Office, but no genuine ballots may be in the possession of voters except in the Election Office at the time of voting when given by election staff, except as provided for absentee and mail-ins.

A site for a safe, secure, unobservable vote shall be provided in the Supervisor of Elections office for each voter to vote in confidence that no observation or record is made of their actual vote.

Voters may be accompanied to the Supervisor of Elections office by family and friends, or others who are transporting them, but all official ballots must be filled out individually, by the voter themselves, in a booth, with no one else present to influence, intimidate, direct or coach the voter, and the ballot returned by that voter to the Election Office officials.

Once a ballot has been returned to the Election Supervisors main desk, the voter registration information of the person turning in a ballot will be adjusted to reflect that they have voted and are no longer eligible to receive a ballot for this election.  For persons applying for a mail in or absentee ballot, their voter registration information once a ballot has been sent to them shall reflect that they have received such a ballot and are no longer eligible for a ballot for this election.

Ballots will be counted, votes will be recorded, and both reported to the central state government elections canvassing office, and then secured after each days voting.  Each days ballots will be secured separately from every other days vote.  On the last day of voting, only the last days ballots and votes will have to be counted.

Voting should take place for two weeks, seven days a week, for as many hours as practical per day, to give everyone a chance to get to the Elections Supervisors Office and have the time to vote.  Counties have the option to extend voting in the Elections Office to as long as a month before the date of closure of the polls to insure all voters the opportunity to have the time and attention necessary to complete their ballot.

Anyone who can not make it to the Supervisor of Elections Office, who has no family or friends, or charities, or volunteers who can bring them in for registration verification and voting, they will be visited by a county elections staffer, with a computer tied to a secure website to check voter registration.  The  ballot envelope, will be videoed with the seal clearly visible after the ballot is sealed in the envelope, and chain of custody maintained until back at the elections office, where the seal will be videoed when it is broken, and the ballot added to the other ballots in a ballot box for the daily count.

A video record will be made of all voters and staff during the two week vote to verify procedures, numbers of people, and maintain transparency, but no video or any other record shall include any actual vote cast by any voter on any provision of the ballot, either intentionally or by accident.

That is probably the most secure way to vote, but it is not practical for larger and more populous counties.

 

General provisions:

All ballots will be in English only.  No translation services shall be provided by any Supervisor of Elections Office.

Provisional ballots will no longer be allowed.  Any problems with I.D. or registration must be resolved before any ballot will be issued to the voter either absentee, at the Election Supervisors Office or at a designated polling place.

Only enough ballots for every registered voter in each county will be printed.   The number of absentee and regular ballots will be recorded before the election begins.  Ballots will be identified with the name of the county on all ballots and no ballot of one county may be used  or counted in another county.  No ballot may be used in a county other than where it is designated.

Each ballot will have a unique number which will be printed on a tear off strip.  This is to account for every ballot until it is used to vote, and if it is not used to vote.  The tear off strip with the ballot number will be torn off by the voter and handed back to the elections office person, before the person votes.  The strip which has the ballot number only will be initialed by the clerk, and put into a sealed box for that days voting.  These numbered strips will not accessible until a recount is called and the number and identity of the ballots used for voting need to be checked.  If not needed, or after a recount, they will be destroyed.

In no way will any information regarding any vote be noted or recorded on the tear off strips.  No ballot shall be used until the voter has torn off the strip and handed it back to the elections officials.  In no way shall there be any tracking or identifying or any connection made further with the voter and their ballot.  All turned in ballots will remain isolated from the turned in tear off strips.

When a mistake is made on a ballot and another ballot has to be used, that shall be noted.  Only enough ballots for each registered voter in a county are printed but it is highly unlikely every registered voter will vote, so all counties should have enough ballots for occasional mistakes.  The aim of this provision is to prevent more ballots counted than there are registered voters in a county.

The number of ballots with votes cast, and the number of ballots unused will be counted and recorded.  Immediately after the election, within one hour of the polls closing, any ballot not used in that election will be destroyed.

All ballots will be secured when the polls close, the total number of votes cast will be recorded, and no additional ballots after closing will be valid for that election.  One hour after the polls close on the last day, all ballots from all sources will be accounted for, and the number recorded. No ballots found or discovered after that total will be allowed to be counted.

All absentee and vote by mail ballots must arrive at the Supervisor of Elections Office before the early voting period begins.   They will be color coded as to be different than vote in person ballots.  All such ballots must have their voter registration and signature verified before the containing envelope is opened.  Those ballots and votes will then be counted, recorded, reported, and stored in a secure container, away from, and will not be mixed with, any other ballots.  They will be sealed and not available until a recount or investigation is declared.  They must be counted and recorded before any voting begins in person at the Supervisor of Elections Office.  Late ballots will be disqualified.  Results can not be changed after the deadline for absentee ballots. All absentee and mail-in voters will also have a record on their voter registration that they have voted absentee during any election when their ballot envelope is checked in, so as not to be able to vote again for that election.

***  In no case will any vote be connected either on purpose or by accident to any voter.  No effort of any kind shall be made to link voters and their votes.

 

County Penalties:

If election laws are violated during or after the polls close, or if additional ballots show up after the polls close, that county may have all their ballots disqualified if careless, negligent or criminally intentional behavior is exhibited by election supervisory or other personnel. Once the ballots are tainted with ineligible or unverified votes, an accurate count is impossible. The exception is if the Supervisor of Elections purposely violates the laws for the purpose of disqualifying all the ballots in their county to change the outcome of an election that way.  Then a procedure will have to be developed to try and count those votes, or a special election for that county, with new election personnel, will be held.  A special county election shall be available for any county as an option where a tainted vote count has occurred, but the county election officials shall not sabotage any election for the purpose of holding another election in order to get a desired or different result.

Any County Supervisor of Elections Office found to have violated any election law will have all personnel within that office replaced.

 

Funding:

The State of Florida shall appropriate adequate and sufficient funds to properly enact and enforce these provisions and changes to Florida election law.

 

Supervisor of Elections and Elections Office Fraud:

Chapter 817 of the Florida Statues regarding Fraudulent Practices shall have a new section added to include Election Fraud.  This shall be defined as: the willful, intentional, practice or act of manipulating or changing in any way, the counting of votes, which violates any election law or procedure of the State of Florida; to purposely taint, sabotage, or in anyway artificially change the vote, the count, the procedures of counting, the addition of votes after closure of polls, the addition of votes from any source other than individual ballots confirmed at time of voting from properly registered voters at the Elections Office or checked by absentee or mail in ballots; the willful restriction of any observer from observing any part of the election process including checking registrations, counting, transportation of ballots, or any action by any person in any capacity acting in or for the Supervisor of Elections Office; or any willful or negligent action that results in anything less than an exact or extremely accurate vote count given the best of human action, intention, and currently available best technology.

 

Illegal alien vote fraud:

Jury selection is generally made from the voter registration rolls, under the assumption that registered voters are citizens.  However due to lax procedures and individuals in various counties across the country, many illegal aliens, and non-citizen permanent residents have been entered into the citizen only voter registration rolls.  Many individuals in order to get out of jury duty, give the reason, “not a U.S. Citizen.”  All such claims should be investigated to determine whether the person is a legal permanent resident, in which case they are dropped from the voter registration rolls, or whether they are in the country illegally, in which case they shall be handed to I.C.E. for deportation.

 

Drivers Licence Citizenship Declaration:

The Florida drivers license shall be modified to have imprinted upon it the declaration, “U.S. Citizen,” or “Permanent Resident,” to aid in voter registration, polling place status identification, jury duty, and for interactions with law enforcement.  Illegal aliens are not eligible for Florida drivers licenses.

 

Penalties:

All Florida County Supervisor of Elections personnel, and any other personnel connected to or participating in any Elections Office practice or function, including security, transportation, or any other function connected to any County Supervisor of Elections action, regarding the supervision of any election, or any election related procedure or action, shall be personally liable for charges of Election Fraud.  Fraud charges may be assessed per election and per incident during an election.  Fines for election fraud will start at $10,000 and up to $100,000 depending on severity and pre-meditation, and carry a minimum one year of incarceration per conviction.

Any person convicted of any election fraud charge or violation of any other election law, would no longer be eligible to serve in any capacity for any Supervisor of Elections Office.

 

***  More issues and improvements.  The issue was raised that the numbers involved make it prohibitive for everyone to go to the elections office.  Another person said voter information could be coded into the drivers license strip.  Or maybe a separate voter card can be issued for elections either to pick up ballots, drop off ballots, or vote at elections offices or polling places.  Also put voter information into the strip on the driver’s license whether anyone is eligible to vote, where they are registered to vote, and whether they have voted or not in the current election.  Can we put tamper resistant voter information on the driver’s license, either on the main strip or a separate voter registration strip. That might require a citizenship declaration on the license and no voter strip to those who are permanent residents, but can’t vote or serve on juries. Should a separate jury strip be included or should it be incorporated into the voter registration strip?  Should drivers licenses be divided into citizenship licenses with a second voter and jury information strip, and permanent resident, without the voter and jury strip?  Illegal aliens would of course be ineligible for drivers licenses.  Should the drivers license be county declared on the license to clearly show where a person can vote?  This would also aid in law enforcement interactions.  No vote information shall be coded into the strip, only the registration information and the status of voting in the current election.  Polling places would all have scanners to verify the information on the strip and check registration so people can vote at the polls.

Any other changes or recommendations please tell me.

Please follow and like us:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *