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Last Call for 10.29.20 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

A digest of the day’s politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink.

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

President Donald Trump wants the election decided Nov. 3 — whatever the vote count is a few hours after the polls close, that’s the one he wants to use.

Even in a normal election cycle, it can take days to tally all the votes. This year, with more than 7 million early and mail-in votes already recorded, it could take a little longer.

Florida voters are not only expecting a delay, but they’re also OK with one according to a new poll conducted by the Tyson Group.

The poll, commissioned by Secure Democracy, found nearly three-quarters of voters would prefer to have accurate election results rather than a winner on election night.

This support was bipartisan, with 86% of Democrats and 60% of Republicans indicating it was more important to make sure every vote is counted, even if it takes a few days to announce a winner.

“This survey makes it clear that elections officials and policymakers should feel empowered and obligated to count every vote, and that media outlets should report accordingly,” said Sarah Walker, director of state and federal affairs for Secure Democracy. “Getting this right is worth the wait, and voters overwhelmingly want to see votes counted accurately and fully accounted for before a final call is made.”

Only 30% of Florida voters said they think every vote will be counted on election night. Additionally, 63% of voters found it understandable that officials may take longer to finish counting ballots.

“The military defends American values through tremendous sacrifice. What they ask in return is modest: To be able to participate in the democratic process we take for granted,” said Alexander Babcock, a U.S. Army veteran and resident of Sanford. “Mail-in ballots make that possible, and a few extra days of patience to ensure those ballots are counted isn’t too much to ask. It’s the least we can do.”

Coronavirus Numbers

Positive cases:

— 784,331 FL residents (+4,111 since Wednesday)

— 10,293 Non-FL residents (+87 since Wednesday)


— 7,056 Travel related

— 297,038 Contact with a confirmed case

— 7,770 Both

— 472,467 Under investigation


— 49,011 in FL


— 16,854 in FL

Voters are Voting

Total ballots cast: 7,385,667

Voted by mail: 4,220,229

— Democrats: 1,947,852

— Republicans: 1,316,734

— NPA/Other: 955,643

Voted early: 4,220,229

— Democrats: 1,044,148

— Republicans: 1,470,989

— NPA/Other: 650,301

Evening Reads

Will Donald Trump or Joe Biden win Florida? Here’s how either could do it” via Steve Contorno of the Tampa Bay Times

Poll: Biden holds narrow lead in Florida” via Mark Murray of NBC News

Biden still holding slim lead over Trump in latest Florida poll” via Amber Randall and Anthony Man of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Kamala Harris to tour South Florida for final weekend push” via Ryan Nicol of Florida Politics

How Trump waged war on his own government” via Lisa Rein, Tom Hamburger, Juliet Eilperin and Andrew Freedman of The Washington Post

How Florida could prevent a drawn-out election — and deliver a decisive blow to Trump” via David Catanese and David Smiley of the Miami Herald

Trump Is losing ground with some — but not all — White Christians” via Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux of FiveThirtyEight

Why many White men love Trump’s coronavirus response” via Olga Khazan of The Atlantic

Trump’s sneering at solar is stupid in the Sunshine State” via Craig Pittman of the Florida Phoenix

Biden makes pitch to Floridians amid closing 2020 stretch: ‘You hold the key’” via Ryan Nicol of Florida Politics

Half of registered Floridians have voted as Election Day looms” via Allison Ross of the Tampa Bay Times

U.S. economy recovered significant ground in record third quarter GDP rebound” via Harriet Torry of The Wall Street Journal

Biden campaign seeks support from classically-red North Florida veterans” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics

She’s 70 years old and had never voted. But this election was too important to sit out.” via Karen Heller of The Washington Post

Florida changes coronavirus data on the percent of tests coming back positive” via Ben Conarck of the Tampa Bay Times

Florida coronavirus: After another day of over 4,000 new cases, total infected nears 800,000” via Tiffini Theisen of the Orlando Sentinel

100 years after Ocoee Massacre, systemic racism still simmers” via Monivette Cordeiro of the Orlando Sentinel

Duval County Canvassing Board chair resigns following Trump donation and sign controversy” via Andrew Pantazi of The Florida Times-Union

Court refuses to reconsider ballot order ruling” via Jim Saunders of News Service of Florida

‘Trump is an embarrassment’: ‘Reagan Republican’ Mike Fasano backs Biden” via Janelle Irwin Taylor of Florida Politics

Quote of the Day

“Maybe we’ll get an announcement of Space Force Command before the election’s over — being in Florida. We’ll see.” — Gov. Ron DeSantis, making his pitch for Trump in Tampa.

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Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Renzo Downey, Rick Flagg, A.G. Gancarski, Joe Henderson, Janelle Irwin, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Scott Powers, Bob Sparks, Andrew Wilson, and Kelly Hayes.
Phone: (727) 642-3162
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