After the 2018 Senate and governor races in Florida, Trump complained about election fraud and theft in Broward and Palm Beach counties which are predominantly Democratic.
Now, the president’s conspiracy theory has fallen apart after Florida’s law enforcement agency said it found no widespread voter fraud.
‼️NEW: “The state took more than 17 months to wrap up its investigation Wednesday, and found none of the wrongdoing alleged by Trump and [Rick] Scott.”
NO VOTER FRAUD in Florida. https://t.co/6xwuo1QjS5
— Katie Phang (@KatiePhang) May 22, 2020
According to POLITICO:
‘With each updated tally, Republican candidates Rick Scott, who was running for U.S. Senate, and Ron DeSantis, in a bid for the governor’s mansion, saw their margins of victory narrow. Both races ultimately went to recounts.’
At the time, when Scott was governor, he claimed without any evidence that there was widespread Democratic fraud – a conspiracy theory that Trump amplified on Twitter. When Scott called for an investigation, the president backed him up.
On November 8, 2018, Trump wrote:
‘Law Enforcement is looking into another big corruption scandal having to do with Election Fraud in #Broward and Palm Beach. Florida voted for Rick Scott!’
The next day, Trump issued another tweet accusing Democrats of sending:
‘their best Election stealing lawyer, Marc Elias, to Broward County they miraculously started finding Democrat votes. Don’t worry, Florida – I am sending much better lawyers to expose the FRAUD!’
According to POLITICO:
‘But neither Trump’s unnamed “lawyers” nor the Florida Department of Law Enforcement found evidence of a “big corruption scandal.” The state took more than 17 months to wrap up its investigation Wednesday, and found none of the wrongdoing alleged by Trump and Scott.’
Trump takes specific interest in Florida though as the state could decide his political future as he runs for reelection, and Scott and DeSantis are among his two closest allies.
‘Election officials and experts expect high voter turnout in November and an increased number of people casting ballots by mail, many for the first time in states that have little experience managing mail-in programs or high volumes of mailed ballots. That’s a recipe for longer and slower vote counting and, if the election is close in battlegrounds like Florida, more potential for fraud claims as vote totals change after the polls close, especially in urban southeast Florida.’