Politics

Florida’s new election crimes office flags leftwing ballot-harvesting operation in Orlando

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Florida’s newly created Office of Election Crimes and Security is requesting a prison investigation into costs of poll harvesting in Orlando, a Democratic stronghold in the essential swing state.

Cynthia Harris, a Democrat who ran unsuccessfully for District 6 commissioner in Orange County, which incorporates Orlando, offered a sworn criticism to the election crimes office, alleging left-leaning organizations have been perpetrating a scheme to encourage residents in black neighborhoods to use for mail-in ballots and to fill out these ballots, which she stated have been collected by paid canvassers, and generally altered, all in violation of state legislation.

In an interview with The Washington Times, Ms. Harris stated she has video proof of paid poll harvesters working in Orlando neighborhoods in each 2014 and 2017, and that the scheme has been occurring for many years, persevering with by means of the 2020 election and the 2022 main.

According to Ms. Harris, the operation is run by unnamed native Democratic operatives funded by progressive teams who primarily hunt down the disabled and the aged, urging them first to use for absentee ballots, which may be requested by any voter in Florida. 

“They know a whole year ahead, who they are going to target and who they’re going to prey upon,” Ms. Harris stated. “They get them to fill out an absentee ballot request, usually a year ahead of time. Then they’ll knock on their doors and they’ll say, ‘You received the absentee ballot and we’re here to pick it up.’”

The harvesting organizers pay $10 per poll, Ms. Harris stated. 

And they don’t simply acquire the envelopes.

According to Ms. Harris’s criticism, those that acquire the ballots alter them in the event that they don’t match the liberal group’s desired candidate, and can steam open a sealed envelope to make adjustments. Or they throw the poll out. 

Ms. Harris’s cost coincides with rising issues about poll harvesting following the 2020 election. There have been claims by conservative teams of widespread poll harvesting in key swing states, together with Georgia and Wisconsin, the place President Biden gained by very slender margins. 

Following election fraud claims by Republicans in 2020, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a legislation in 2021 stipulating that solely a relative can deal with a voter’s mail-in poll. He signed a second legislation in April that elevated the penalty for poll harvesting from a first-degree misdemeanor to a third-degree felony, punishable by as much as 5 years in jail, a $5,000 effective and as much as 5 years of probation.

The legislation Mr. DeSantis signed in April additionally created the Office of Election Crimes and Security to analyze fraud instances. 

The office performed a preliminary investigation of Ms. Harris’s criticism this month and forwarded it to state legislation enforcement officers. 

Ms. Harris blamed her loss to fellow Democrat Mike Scott by simply six votes in the August main on a mix of poll harvesting and irregularities in the course of the vote counting. 

“I’m excited that someone’s finally hearing what has been said for a long time,” Ms. Harris stated. 

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