New legislation addressing voter fraud is heading to the Governor’s desk

A new bill would create an elections crimes agency to investigate claims of voter fraud in Florida.
Published: Mar. 11, 2022 at 7:18 PM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - A new bill would create an elections crimes agency to investigate claims of voter fraud in Florida. That bill is expected to be signed into law by Governor DeSantis after passing the house this week.

Many voting rights organizations have criticized this legislation, worrying it could instill fear in voters and election workers.

WCTV spoke with the president of Tallahassee’s League of Women Voters, Sally Butzin, who said her organization opposes the bill. She said it’s based on a lie and that there was widespread voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election.

Butzin worries it will scare voters and erode trust in our democracy.

“It’s just another example of making voting very intimidating and very difficult. And it’s just not right,” Butzin said.

She believes the creation of a state election crimes office is unwarranted.

“It’s an expense we don’t need and it’s going to lead to distrust of our elections, which is very dangerous.”

When Gov. DeSantis proposed this election legislation back in January he claimed it would have the opposite effect.

“This will facilitate the faithful enforcement of election laws and will provide Floridians with the confidence that their vote will matter,” DeSantis said.

Leon County supervisor of elections Mark Earley said the election investigative until could have some benefits.

“To have a force or a group that’s capable of, you know, looking through the intricacies of election law and determine what is or is not really elections fraud. So maybe that’s a positive,” Earley said.

But Earley said it’s concerning that there’s no penalty for people who make false claims of fraud. He also said there are very few instances of voter fraud in Florida elections, and he worries that legislation like this may create more distrust in the election process without actually solving any real problems.

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