Alex Andrade calls for investigation of ballot collection violations

Alex Andrade Banner
The Legislature approved the ballot protections earlier this year.

State Rep. Alex Andrade is calling for Florida’s election officials and law enforcement to investigate reported constitutional amendment petition violations.

In a letter sent Friday to Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan, the Pensacola Republican alleged that 30-day turn-in requirements were violated. Additionally, he said petition collectors have not registered with the Secretary of State, Laurel Lee.

“Today, I am calling on Florida’s elections supervisors to ensure that the petitions they receive are meeting the requirements of HB 5 and for our sheriffs across the State to investigate these illegal practices,” Andrade said.

This year, the Legislature passed constitutional amendment ballot measures, including the protections Andrade said, were violated.

“HB 5 was deigned to protect Floridians from manipulation by special interest groups and partisan millionaires from other states, who desire to alter Florida’s Constitution,” Andrade said.

Failing to turn in a petition signature within 30 days is subject to a $50 fine, or $250 if found to be intentional. Not returning a petition at all carries a $500 penalty, or $1,000 if found intentional. The fines apply to each petition form returned late.

“If proven, these violations constitute activity subject to criminal prosecution,” Andrade said. “It appears as though these out of state groups are willfully breaking the law in an effort to defraud Florida voters and abuse our citizen initiative process for their own gain.”

Changes to the Florida Constitution may be proposed through voter initiatives, the Legislature, the Constitution Revision Commission, the Taxation and Budget Reform Commission, or a constitutional convention. Most proposed amendments require approval by 60% of voters, but new taxes and fees only require a two-thirds majority.

“I take these reports very seriously and will do everything in my power to ensure the voters are protected from any attempted illegal actions, voter manipulation, and fraudulent activities,” Andrade said.

The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office responded: “We will review the request Rep. Andrade sent,” Morgan said. “And we will consult with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the State Attorney’s Office in order to ensure the integrity of the electoral process is maintained.”

Renzo Downey

Renzo Downey covers state government for Florida Politics. After graduating from Northwestern University in 2019, Renzo began his reporting career in the Lone Star State, covering state government for the Austin American-Statesman. Shoot Renzo an email at r[email protected] and follow him on Twitter @RenzoDowney.


  • qwerty

    December 21, 2019 at 8:13 pm

    Renzo, you write “Most proposed amendments require approval by 60% of voters, but new taxes and fees only require a two-thirds majority.” This is misleading. Inaccurate. Incomplete.

    • Phil

      December 22, 2019 at 7:45 am

      That crooked sleaze bag baboon that was in charge of the voting collection is still there. She pitched votes and will do it again.

      • Drawer 22

        January 3, 2020 at 2:23 pm

        Phil – To which “…crooked(sic) sleaze bag baboon that was in charge of the voting collection…” are you referring. The field is rather wide, each referring to another person in a circular pattern of obfuscation.

  • jayjay

    December 21, 2019 at 8:29 pm

    I believe amendments submitted at time of state or national elections are a fraud. They circumvent our legislative government jump straddling the process. For example, in FLorida restoring voting rights to convicted felons opened the floodgates to new voters that will take advantage of future elections to advance similar progressive agendas. We now have a lot of progressives that moved to Florida from blue states which is not in our tradition and interests. Lets end this slide to destruction of the democratic process.

  • John Kociuba

    December 21, 2019 at 8:32 pm

    Dear Citizens ~

    Re: Andrew Gillum

    He should be arrested Immediately! Michael Bloomberg is running for POTUS as well as funding Clandestine Communist Operatives to overthrow the SOCIAL CONTRACT and STATE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS!

    Indeed whether its Moms Demand Action, Forward Florida, Countless other groups with variable titles (like they did in Virginia) all set to falsify FBI statistics and use mainstream Communist NYC media Conglomerates as a military weapon these agitators have one goal.

    Yes. Overthrow the 1st, 2nd Amendment Rights to the United States Constitution (Sedition).

    • glock19fan

      December 21, 2019 at 9:02 pm

      If I remember correctly, Gillum is a bloody Communist.He belongs at Gitmo.

  • Pamela

    December 21, 2019 at 9:20 pm

    Bloomberg is a dirt-bag….he should change his name to Bribeberg……he goes around trying to buy our rights away while he surrounds himself with bodyguards 24/7….guess he thinks his life is more important than ours. Didn’t he have a couple of Andrew Gillum look alikes in his little anit gun group who went to jail for bribery…Ray Nagin and somebody else…and Andrew Gillum is a jive talker and is probably taking bribe money.

  • Barbara Cox

    December 21, 2019 at 10:19 pm

    The paragraph with “Most proposed amendments require approval by 60% of voters, but new taxes and fees only require a two-thirds majority.” makes me wonder if Mr Downey knows anything about math so I’m inclined not to take his civics reporting seriously either then.
    It’s unfortunate that newly arrived Floridians try to change our state to make it more like the cesspool they left when they came here for a better opportunity.
    I recognize that one could easily substitute”newly arrived Floridians” by the words “leftists” or “totalitarians”. What the understatement depicts is bad enough for starters if anyone is just beginning to pay attention. The person will realize the other titles at their own pace.

  • Rodney L. Kincaud

    December 24, 2019 at 9:40 am

    Rodney L. Kincaid
    December 24, 2019 at 9:38 a.m.
    Thank you for providing honest reports about what is happening in Tallahassee.
    Please continue your efforts.

    • Howard Alexander Stafford

      December 24, 2019 at 11:29 pm

      Rodney L. Kincaid, agree with your thoughts totally.
      Thank you sir and Merry Christmas!

Comments are closed.


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