CANOVA

South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Sunday) - - Lo­cal - [email protected]­sen­tinel.com, 954-356-4550 or Twit­ter @broward­pol­i­tics

polling places “are in­her­ently de­fec­tive as to the chain of cus­tody for the elec­tronic votes.” Canova as­serted that the modems in the ma­chines “ren­der them highly sus­cep­ti­ble to out­side hack­ing and in­side soft­ware ma­nip­u­la­tion.”

■ Bal­lots on elec­tion night were, in at least some cases, ac­com­pa­nied by just one per­son, which al­lowed in­di­vid­u­als “the im­proper op­por­tu­nity to do any­thing they want with the bal­lots.”

■ Snipes posed for a pic­ture with Wasser­man Schultz on Oct. 27, show­ing “an ar­ro­gant dis­re­gard to avoid even the ap­pear­ance of a con­flict of in­ter­est in the su­per­vi­sion of the 2018 elec­tion.”

■ A sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of un­der­votes, where peo­ple voted in other races, “may mean that le­git­i­mate votes have ei­ther not been counted or have been dis­carded.”

Con­gres­sional races in Con­gres­sional can­di­date Tim Canova, on the fi­nal day of the Florida State As­so­ci­a­tion of Su­per­vi­sors of Elec­tions con­fer­ence in Fort Laud­erdale on May 24, where he of­fered crit­i­cisms of Broward Elec­tions Su­per­vi­sor Brenda Snipes to the news me­dia.

Broward were placed in the lower left cor­ner of the bal­lot, be­low the in­struc­tions, a place­ment that ap­par­ently caused mas­sive un­der

vot­ing in the U.S. Se­nate race, con­tribut­ing to in­cum­bent Demo­crat Bill Nel­son’s de­feat. Dur­ing the re­count in the Se­nate race, there wasn’t ev­i­dence of votes not counted or dis­carded. The law­suit as­serts that the lo­ca­tion of the race on the bal­lot “is un­likely to be the sole rea­son for the high un­der­vote.”

Snipes’ over­all han­dling of the 2018 elec­tion, in­clud­ing missed dead­lines, a 2,040-bal­lot dis­crep­ancy dur­ing re­count­ing and the con­fus­ing bal­lot de­sign, gen­er­ated mas­sive crit­i­cism.

In mid-Novem­ber, Snipes said she would re­sign in Jan­uary. On Nov. 30, Gov. Rick Scott sus­pended and re­placed Snipes, cit­ing “mis­fea­sance, in­com­pe­tence and ne­glect of duty.”

Much of Canova’s com­plaint in the cur­rent case re­peats his dis­pute with Snipes over the 2016 Demo­cratic con­gres­sional pri­mary, which Canova lost to Wasser­man Schultz.

A Broward cir­cuit court judge ruled in May that Snipes’ of­fice broke fed­eral and state law by de­stroy­ing bal­lots too soon af­ter the Au­gust 2016 pri­mary. Snipes signed the bal­lot destruc­tion or­der a year af­ter the pri­mary; the law re­quires

preser­va­tion of the bal­lots for 22 months.

The bal­lots were de­stroyed even though a sep­a­rate Canova law­suit seek­ing ac­cess to the bal­lots was pend­ing.

Canova, who lives in Hol­ly­wood, is a pro­fes­sor of law and pub­lic fi­nance at Nova South­east­ern Univer­sity. Wasser­man Schultz, a We­ston res­i­dent, is serv­ing her seventh term in Congress. Two other can­di­dates were on the bal­lot in Novem­ber: Repub­li­can Joe Kauf­man, who won 36 per­cent of the vote, and no party af­fil­i­a­tion can­di­date Don En­driss, who re­ceived 0.6 per­cent.

The state Elec­tions Can­vass­ing Com­mis­sion, a de­fen­dant in the Canova suit, de­ter­mines who is elected in pres­i­den­tial, state of­fice and con­gres­sional con­tests. The state Divi­sion of Elec­tions, part of the Sec­re­tary of State’s Of­fice, op­er­ates as the staff for the com­mis­sion. Sarah Rev­ell, spokes­woman for the agency, said by email she couldn’t com­ment on pend­ing lit­i­ga­tion.

Wasser­man Schultz’s spokesman de­clined to com­ment.

AN­THONY MAN/SUN SEN­TINEL

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