Florida’s vote-by-mail system has Donald Trump’s blessing
President Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that Florida's vote-by-mail system is "Safe and Secure, Tried and True." Image via AP.

Donald Trump 2
Last week, the President questioned whether the November election should be delayed.

President Donald Trump has raised doubt about the integrity of vote-by-mail systems around the country. But in a Tuesday tweet, he gave Florida’s system his seal of approval.

“Whether you call it Vote by Mail or Absentee Voting, in Florida the election system is Safe and Secure, Tried and True,” the President tweeted. “Florida’s Voting system has been cleaned up (we defeated Democrats attempts at change), so in Florida I encourage all to request a Ballot & Vote by Mail!”

During a Tuesday evening press conference, Trump expounded on that tweet, saying Florida’s system was built up over years by “two great Republican Governors.” Florida’s VBM system was done “extremely professionally.”

“They have a very good system of mail-in, and that would be absentee or even beyond absentee,” he said. “In the case of Florida, there aren’t too many people who would qualify. They are so well run. Florida’s a very well-run state. Low taxes, low everything.”

Trump’s praise didn’t extend to New York, where he said a Democratic primary election involving U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney should be redone. Nevada also drew the President’s ire.

“In Nevada, where you have a Governor, he said, ‘Let’s just send out millions of ballots,” adding that post offices cannot handle such an influx. But noted he had not spoken to the Postal Service.

“You can’t do that,” he said. “I can’t imagine the post office could do it. All of a sudden they’re going to be dealing in millions of ballots.”

Florida’s post offices, he insisted, “are built up there.”

On Thursday, Trump floated the possibility that the nation delay the Nov. 3 presidential election over fears about voter fraud with mail-in ballots. That suggestion drew criticism from Republicans and Democrats.

Trump tweeted Thursday: “With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???”

Gov. Ron DeSantis at a press conference later that day said he had not see the President’s tweet, and appeared taken aback by the suggestion.

The Governor, who has been criticized by Democrats for being in lock-step with Trump, noted the President’s concerns. Yet he defended Florida’s vote-by-mail system, which he said has necessary safeguards to avoid “ballots flying out there, willy nilly.”

“There’s some people that say you should just mass mail ballots to every address, regardless of whether they request it or anything. And I do think that creates some problems in terms of potential for fraud.”

“That’s not what we do in Florida,” DeSantis added, saying “you can request a vote-by-mail ballot.”

Trump’s tweet last week came on a day of bad economic news. The government reported the U.S. economy shrank at a dizzying 32.9% annual rate in the April-June quarter, by far the worst quarterly plunge ever, as the coronavirus outbreak shut down businesses, threw tens of millions out of work and sent unemployment surging to 14.7%.

There is no evidence of widespread voter fraud through mail-in voting, even in states with all-mail votes. Five states already rely exclusively on mail-in ballots, and they say they have necessary safeguards in place to ensure a hostile foreign actor doesn’t disrupt the vote. Election security experts say that all forms of voter fraud are rare, including in absentee balloting.

Last month, Florida reached a settlement in a legal battle over a request to expend the vote-by-mail deadline because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The agreement requires Secretary of State Laurel Lee to “educate” and “encourage” county supervisors of elections about a variety of vote-by-mail procedures that were at the heart of the lawsuit.


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 [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @RenzoDowney.



    August 4, 2020 at 3:31 pm

    Hmmm,such deception. “Vote by mail” is not the same as universal mail-in ballots. With the first, it is for folks not living in their state of residence. These folks must apply to “vote by mail”, register, provide proof of ID, provide address and all pertinent contact information. Upon receipt, the signatures are then compared to the signature on the vote by mail registration form. Universal mail in ballots are millions mailed out without confirming any names or personal information, current addresses, without seeing ID, and as indicated below, this has caused unreliable, fraudulent balloting.

    The Heritage Foundation’s election fraud database has been around for four years. With the addition of our latest batch of cases, we are up to 1,285 proven instances of voter fraud. Examples include impersonation fraud at the polls; false voter registrations; duplicate voting; fraudulent absentee ballots; vote buying; illegal assistance and intimidation of voters; ineligible voting, such as by aliens; altering of vote counts; and ballot petition fraud. Millions of mailed ballots have been misdirected or gone missing in prior elections. Electronic signatures are too imprecise and easily duplicated, and should not be accepted. Automatically mailing a ballot to all registered voters is an open invitation to fraud and abuse. Not every new resident at an address throws out the ballot that is still being automatically mailed to a former resident, and third parties may canvass neighborhoods looking for those “extra” ballots—with some being tempted to cast those extra votes. States should ban “vote harvesting” and not allow candidates, party activists, or political consultants who have a stake in the outcome, to collect absentee ballots from voters

    Following accusations of widespread fraud, voter intimidation, and ballot theft in the May 12 municipal elections in Paterson, N.J., four men were charged with voter fraud – including the vice president of the City Council and a candidate for that body. In the City Council election, 16,747 vote-by-mail ballots were received, but only 13,557 votes were counted. More than 3,190 votes, 19% of the total ballots cast, were disqualified by the board of elections. Due to the pandemic, Paterson’s election was done through vote-by-mail. Over 800 ballots in Paterson were invalidated for appearing in mailboxes improperly bundled together – including one mailbox where hundreds of ballots were in a single packet. The bundles were turned over to law enforcement to investigate potential criminal activity related to the collection of the ballots. The board of elections disqualified another 2,300 ballots after concluding that the signatures on them did not match the signatures on voter records.

    A West Virginia postal carrier pled guilty to mail and election fraud after admitting he changed the political affiliation on multiple voter ballots from Democrat to Republican. Thomas Cooper, 47, admitted to attempted election fraud and injury to the mail Thursday after an affidavit was filed against him in May.

    In a USPS memo, it says mail carriers may have to leave mail behind at distribution centers in order to make it on time to their delivery routes. One aspect of these changes that may be difficult for employees is that – temporarily – we may see mail left behind or mail on the workroom floor or docks…….

    Judicial Watch Finds Millions of ‘Extra’ Registrants on Voting Rolls – Warns California, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Colorado, Virginia to Clean Up Voting Rolls or Face a Federal Lawsuit.

    A dead cat received a ballot.

  • Sonja Fitch

    August 5, 2020 at 5:38 am

    Mmm got yo check with the Democratic Party! Why? Cause trump is a paranoid delusional racist sexist liar! Vote Blue for you and me !

  • Ocean Joe

    August 5, 2020 at 9:38 am

    Now having obviously heard from Florida Republican party leaders, he finally understands that mail-in ballots have been the key to Republican success in Florida since Jeb Bush. So now, mail-in is OK. Otherwise he is guaranteed to lose Florida and the race.

    Not content to destroy American faith in our news media, our FBI, CIA, our alliances around the world, he sinks to challenging the voting process. He wants to remake America in his own image: dishonest and distrustful.

Comments are closed.


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