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More Vote-blocking From the Governor's Office

State Blocks University of Florida Student Union from Being an Early-voting Location

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“I’m very upset about this,” she told the Tampa Bay Times. “I just can’t understand why they feel the need to be so restrictive about where people are allowed to vote. … This is strategic. They’re worried about young people voting.”

It’s just the latest ripple in the ever-percolating blame game between the struggling supervisors and Scott’s block-the-vote cabinet. First, Detzner was calling foul on the supervisors for not handling the lines better. Then came the feud with the governor over whether supervisors would even act on the governor’s attempt to remove everybody with the last name “Gonzalez” from the voter rolls. Finally, back in December we reported Detzner’s attempts to limit absentee ballot drop-off points, a move that was perceived by many to be a move to make voting more difficult while simultaneously screaming “Voter fraud!” in a political theater. As we all know, nothing says “elect me!” like “don’t vote.”

And at its core, that’s what’s happening with University of Florida brouhaha, agrees everyone with a brain. Our favorite hell-raiser, president of the League of Women Voters of Florida Deirdre Macnab, opined to the Times that this latest miscalculation by Scott’s posse was “jaw-dropping” and that the state “would frankly prefer to discourage student participation.”

Ironically (but not really), last week also saw the release of a new University of Florida poll that showed that only 45 percent of the 1,006 people surveyed approved of Scott’s job performance, while 63 percent still dream fondly of gubernatorial glowworm Charlie Crist (Crist leads by 7 points in a head-to-head). That horrible message should be easier to control when there are fewer people to act on it, right?

“Unfortunately, this is nothing new. Rick Scott’s disastrous restrictions on early voting caused long lines at the polls in 2012 that prevented hundreds of thousands of Floridians from voting,” Florida Democratic Party chairwoman Allison Tant said in a statement on Feb. 7. “Now he’s at it again, trying to make voting as difficult as possible. Rick Scott should be ashamed. But he probably isn’t.

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