Florida governor mistaken for dead in 2006 vote

TALLAHASSEE, Florida Thu Jun 14, 2012 12:46pm EDT

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TALLAHASSEE, Florida (Reuters) - Florida's governor, who is leading a disputed purge of voter registration rolls, had to cast a provisional ballot in 2006 because officials mistakenly thought he was dead, election officials said on Thursday.

Governor Rick Scott was required to use a provisional ballot in the 2006 primary and general elections because Collier County election officials had received a Social Security Death Index Death Record that led them to believe he had died on January 27, 2006.

In fact the deceased was Richard E. Scott, who had the same birthday as the governor, December 1, 1952. The governor's full name is Richard Lynn Scott.

Election officials verified that Scott was among the living and his ballots were counted.

"I've been here for more than seven years and it's the first time I am aware of somebody who was removed for being deceased and it was a mistake," said Tim Durham, Collier County deputy election supervisor. "It was the exact same name, Florida resident, identical date of birth."

Scott took office in January 2011. Spokesman Lane Wright said the incident underscores the governor's contention that his push to purge the voting rolls of ineligible voters will not prevent eligible voters from casting ballots.

Florida's provisional ballot process allows contested voters to cast ballots and requires local election officials to verify their votes within 30 days.

"The system is set up so that people can vote," Wright said.

Over the past several weeks, the Republican governor has been at the center of the storm as state and federal agencies battle over a Scott-backed attempt to purge ineligible voters from the rolls. The Florida Secretary of State and the U.S. Department of Justice have traded lawsuits over the issue.

Critics said the Scott administration's effort to purge ineligible non-citizens from Florida's voter rolls relies on faulty data that threatens to disenfranchise legitimate voters. A federal court blocked enforcement of a Scott-supported law that put "harsh and impractical" limits on voter registration drives.

(Editing by Jane Sutton and Doina Chiacu)

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Comments (4)
Robert76 wrote:
The Republicans cannot prove that there ever has been voter fraud in any significat numbers, yet push ahead in efforts to take the vote away from the poor, the minorities, etc to further strengthen their positions. It is sicknening to see what is happening, and to see people actually supporting having the vote taken away from the people.

Guess once the Supreme Court (Primarily Republicans) decided that Corporations were people and could donate without limits (bribe their candidates); they Republicans decided it would be good to eliminate everyone from the voter roles, so that Corporations could control the elections.

Jun 14, 2012 1:08pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
SilentBoy741 wrote:
“the deceased was Richard E. Scott … The governor’s full name is Richard Lynn Scott.”

“said Tim Durham, Collier County deputy election supervisor. ‘It was the exact same name’”

As the saying goes, close enough for government work.

Jun 14, 2012 1:51pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Montana1 wrote:
Actually Robert- they HAVE proven voter fraud- which is why they want measures in place so every CITIZEN gets ONE vote. It seems the Libs all want to keep the GOP from ensuring this happens. hmmm… wonder why?
Could it be that somehow dead people vote Democratic? Or that illegal aliens vote Democratic. Or my favorite- the old Chicago way: Vote Early- Vote Often!
In any case- somethings gotta change. Every measure the GOP recommends are easy and cost the voter NOTHING! But the measures ensure a fair election occurs the way it was meant to happen.

And BTW- Corporations are people the way Unions are people. As a collective block- like it or not- if one stays or goes the other does too!

@SilentBoy- gotta agree… sad

Jun 14, 2012 6:36pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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