Susan Bucher ignores pending lawsuit, extends early voting in PBC

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While Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, refused to extend early voting last week, Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher issued a press release Sunday morning offering absentee voting in person in her office without the apparent authority to do so.

“I understand there is a law suit that I haven’t seen yet asking that Miami, Broward and Palm Beach provide in person absentee voting today and tomorrow.  Rather than require legal action, our office is taking a proactive position and providing the service so our voters can vote,” said Bucher.

The lawsuit was filed by the state Democratic Party against Bucher, Broward County and  Miami-Dade County elections supervisors and Secretary of State Ken Detzner. The lawsuit asks that absentee voting in person be required by a judge until Tuesday’s election because of long lines.

The lawsuit states, “The extensive lines are the result of polling facilities that are inadequate to meet the needs of Florida electors during the early voting period.”

Voters may vote their absentee ballots in person at the main elections office located at 240 S. Military Trail in West Palm Beach. The office will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m on Sunday, Nov. 4 and Monday, Nov. 5.

The state Democratic Party had made requests last week to extend early voting, and have since filed lawsuits for more time in four counties. With waits of up to six hours on Saturday in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties, the separate lawsuit was filed seeking additional time.

In a separate report, a judge has ordered an Orange County early voting site to be opened for four hours on Sunday. This action was taken after an election site in that county was closed for several hours while authorities investigated a suspicious package.

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