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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

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Day of action focuses on CT undocumented's healthcare needs; 7 jurors seated in first Trump criminal trial; ND looks to ease 'upskill' obstacles for former college students; Black Maternal Health Week ends, health disparities persist.

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Seven jury members were seated in Trump's hush money case. House Speaker Johnson could lose his job over Ukraine aid. And the SCOTUS heard oral arguments in a case that could undo charges for January 6th rioters.

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Fears grow that low-income folks living in USDA housing could be forced out, North Carolina's small and Black-owned farms are helped by new wind and solar revenues, and small towns are eligible for grants to boost civic participation..

Should law enforcement transport ballot boxes in FL?

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Friday, January 5, 2024   

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story implied the new regulations were in effect. Implementation is in the planning stages. (11:14AM MST, January 8, 2023)


President Donald Trump's debunked claims of election interference in 2020 are still generating policy actions, including a bill in the next Florida legislative session to require law enforcement to escort ballot boxes statewide.

State Sen. Ileana Garcia, R-Miami, called it "common sense" for police supervision in the transport or handling of ballots "to prevent any possible tampering." But retired Leon County Supervisor of Elections Ion Sancho said the 2020 elections were among the most well-administered, large-turnout votes in the country since 1904.

Sancho contends there is no need for Senate Bill 190.

"Complete balderdash, unnecessary, a waste of taxpayers' dollars," he said, "and, quite frankly, I'm tired of people pandering to the 'big lie' about 2020 that a losing president made up because he didn't want to lose."

It's worth noting that Garcia won her Senate seat in 2020 during a scheme by former Republican state Rep. Frank Artiles, allegedly planting a "ghost candidate" in the race with the same last name as the Democratic incumbent to confuse voters. That case goes to trial Feb. 5.

Sancho said he thinks Florida lawmakers should invest their time, energy and budgets in ensuring every county can do scientific audits of its paper ballots "to confirm every ballot cast in every race. That's what's occurring in Leon County, Hillsborough County, Bay County - and a whole host of counties who really have taken it upon themselves to ensure that our elections are as accurate as possible."

After touting Florida as a national leader for running the most secure elections in the country, Gov. Ron DeSantis still signed sweeping legislation last year for new identification requirements. The law requires the Florida Department of State to propose a plan using a driver's license number or partial Social Security number to verify identity for vote-by-mail ballots. That plan is still being worked on by the state. County supervisors argued that measure should be thrown out because it could present serious logistical and security issues.



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