- Faith & Family
Last week the Justice Department sued the state of Florida to block its effort to purge its voter rolls and records. Obviously, Governor Scott believes that he is justified in his search to find non-U.S. citizens on the state’s voter rolls. He feels this is his personal mandate and responsibility for his administration and he has identified 180,000 registered voters who may not be U.S. citizens.
Last year, Scott ordered our Secretary of the State, Ken Detzner, to start looking for non-U.S. citizens on the voter rolls. This was a major project that probably cost the state hundreds of thousands of dollars and thousands of workers’ hours. Detzner compared driver license records and addresses to voter registration records and initially found over 180,000 red flags.
Once the 180,000 potential problems were identified, then it became necessary for the team to do an in depth study. Now he is asking county election officials to remove up to 2,600 from the voter rolls. Many have refused to follow the direction of the governor and Detzner.
The suit against the state and Detzner alleges “Florida violated its obligations under the federal National Voter Registration Act by conducting a systematic program to purge voters from its rolls within the 90-day quiet period before an election for federal office. It appears that Florida has undertaken a new program for voter removal that has critical imperfections and has led to errors that harm and confuse eligible voters,” according to Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
Essentially, the Justice Department is suing the governor’s administration for going on a voter hunt based on racism to refuse its citizens civil rights. Legally, our governor is using his power to take away voting rights from minorities.
Scott is a shrewd manipulator but the ultimate power is in the hands of the federal government. He may hope to challenge the federal government but eventually he will lose. In November, the biggest vote in the land will be administrated by the state — the federal government and the state needs to be on the same page.
Roger Caldwell is the CEO of On Point Media Group in Orlando.
By Roger Caldwell
Miami Times contributor