As of this Monday, Democrats in the state of Florida have requested over 700,000 more absentee ballots than Republicans, suggesting that the state’s Democratic voter base is energized about the chance to vote Donald Trump out of office this November. The huge lead for Democrats among absentee ballot requests comes as Trump continues his own baseless attacks against mail-in voting, which he has falsely claimed is full of opportunities for system-threatening fraud. He has occasionally singled out Florida as a state supposedly doing mail-in voting right, but those comparatively brief messages have been swamped by his avalanche of vitriol.
The revelations about the GOP’s struggles in absentee voting in Florida are featured in a new article from The New York Times. In the Sarasota area, one 73-year-old voter named Michelle lambasted Trump for his decrepit handling of the Coronavirus, insisting he “is killing us!” She added that she “could catch an infection and die, and he knew about it, he admitted it.” It’s true — in a taped March conversation with journalist Bob Woodward, Trump admitted to intentionally downplaying the Coronavirus, which has hit communities like seniors especially hard.
Michelle, the Sarasota area-voter, told the Times that she was planning on voting by mail. The Times adds:
‘For years, that’s what Florida Republicans did — and it helped cement their political dominance in a state where they have controlled the governor’s office and the Legislature for 21 years. Mr. Trump’s relentless attacks on mail-in ballots have undercut that advantage, and Democrats have requested over 700,000 more ballots than Republicans.’
Jeb Bush, who lost the 2016 Republican presidential nomination to Trump but won the governorship of Florida twice, told the Times that the current absentee voting situation “could be a game changer.”
Every bit will count — Biden currently leads in Florida by an average of just 2.6 percent, according to FiveThirtyEight, suggesting that the final results in the state (which reports its absentee ballot results on or near Election Night alongside all of the rest of the ballots) will be fairly close. There is one sign of good news in the polls for Democrats — seniors, who Trump won by a 17 percent margin in 2016, are going for Biden in large numbers. A recent NBC survey revealed that Biden led among Florida seniors by one percent, which represents an apparent 18 percent shift towards the Democrats.