Susan Bucher petitions lawmakers to give more power to county election supervisors

Susan Bucher, PBC Supervisor of ElectionsElection reform was the topic of discussion in a Senate Ethics and Elections Committee meeting held Monday in Tallahassee. A brief summary and opinion from Henry Kelley, a leader in the Florida tea party movement :

If you review the State’s paid media, you’d swear that the Supervisors of Elections (SOE’s) one after the other blamed the Legislature for all the problems in 2012.

Actually, the Supervisors did a good job of addressing issues that need to be addressed. In fact Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher argued for the very Tea Party principle of less control in Tallahassee and more control be given back to the counties. In most cases, I couldn’t agree more!

But therein lies the danger of giving control back to the local level. A bad Supervisor of Elections at the county level can certainly impact election results. Palm Beach’s well documented problems during the 2012 general election caused me to question the validity of all statewide campaigns in Florida.

The truth is SOEs and their performance must be above reproach because if we cannot trust election results…we no longer have a Republic.

So, on one hand I applaud the SOEs for asking for more control, however, the Legislature needs to go slow on how much they turnover. Ms. Bucher’s performance in the last cycle and her comments cannot go unchallenged, and she is the cautionary tale before we revert authority back to the SOEs.

Very little finger pointing occurred as it was brought out that the rule that enables the Legislature to write amendments as long as it wants was crafted between 1998 and 2000. Opinion was virtually unanimous among committee members that legislatively written amendments must be limited to 75 words or less. Chairman Jack Latvala seemed cool to the idea, but let’s hope the Legislature goes down this path.

Additionally, the SOEs asked for:

  • Far more flexibility in choosing early voting sites
  • The idea of different rules for non-Presidential years was briefly discussed. I hope this is further examined.
  • Expand early voting from 8 days to 14.
  • Absentee ballots were a hot topic, with several ideas tossed around. Look for “vote by mail” proposals to come soon.

More to come on the Ethics portion of the hearing.

Henry Kelley offers BizPac Review readers an exclusive analysis of what’s happening in Tallahassee. The Florida Legislature is currently in committee week.

Henry is a small business owner in Fort Walton Beach, a prominent leader of the Florida tea party movement and a decorated Army veteran who served in Desert Storm. He earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Florida and an MBA from Rollins College.

RELATED:

Florida Secretary of State visits ‘under-performing’ election offices

PBC elections supervisor refuses to provide information, except to the liberal media

Palm Beach County Republicans burned by Democratic elections supervisor

 

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Tom Tillison

Tom is a grassroots activist who distinguished himself as one of the top conservative bloggers in Florida before joining BizPac Review.
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About Tom Tillison

Tom is a grassroots activist who distinguished himself as one of the top conservative bloggers in Florida before joining BizPac Review.

  • Dean Taffel

    The issue is framed incorrectly. It is not about not about which segment of the criminal government to give more power to rig the outcome of elections, it is about structuring the system to give the maximum control, oversight and certainty over the election process to the electorate. who have THE ONLY and paramount interest in having a VERIFIABLE, accurate, TRANSPARENT methodology for the casting and tabulating of votes. It always comes back to the same thing: "government of, by and for THE PEOPLE." EVERYONE must think about and understand the elements THAT MUST be included for those purposes to be served. Any thing short of that is wholly insufficient. When I lived in Chicago ,we frequented a cafeteria whose motto was, "See your food". When it comes to voting, the single commitment of the entire political establishment, not watered down by any other consideration, needs to be, "Our job is to be sure to let the public 'SEE THEIR VOTES'."