Trump bashed the vote count­ing in Broward.

Sun Sentinel Broward Edition - - Front Page - By An­thony Man Staff writer Larry Barszewski con­tributed to this re­port. aman@sunsen­tinel.com, 954-356-4550 or Twit­ter @broward­pol­i­tics

Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump on Fri­day joined the cho­rus of Repub­li­can crit­ics com­plain­ing about the pace of vote count­ing in Broward, the Demo­cratic bas­tion whose votes have nar­rowed the race for U.S. Se­nate.

He said there are “re­ally bad things” go­ing on in Broward and went af­ter Su­per­vi­sor of Elec­tions Brenda Snipes, who is in charge of vote count­ing in the state’s largest Demo­cratic strong­hold.

“If you look at Broward County, they have had a hor­ri­ble his­tory,” Trump told re­porters be­fore board­ing the pres­i­den­tial he­li­copter Marine One. “And if you look at the per­son, in this case a woman, in­volved, she has had a hor­ri­ble his­tory.”

Trump as­serted some­thing that Repub­li­can crit­ics have claimed, but hasn’t been ver­i­fied. “And all of a sud­den they are find­ing votes out of nowhere.”

The pres­i­dent then con­tin­ued to weave in mul­ti­ple con­spir­acy the­o­ries, sug­gest­ing that there is some­how an at­tempt by Democrats to steal a Se­nate seat that he wants to go to Repub­li­can Gov. Rick Scott. As vote count­ing con­tin­ued since Tues­day, Scott’s mar­gin of vic­tory has got­ten smaller and U.S. Sen. Bill Nel­son, D-Fla., has got­ten closer.

“And Rick Scott who won by, it was close but he won by a com­fort­able mar­gin, ev­ery cou­ple hours it goes down a lit­tle bit. And then you see the peo­ple, and they were in­volved with the fraud of the fake dossier, the phony dossier, and I guess I hear they were some­how in­volved or worked with the GPS Fu­sion peo­ple, who have com­mit­ted, I mean you look at what they’ve done, you look at the dis­hon­esty, look, look, there’s bad things gone on in Broward County, re­ally bad things.”

Trump’s com­ments am­pli­fied a theme that came from Repub­li­cans most of the day on Thurs­day – that some­thing im­proper is go­ing on with Broward vote count­ing, rather than sim­ply a slow tal­ly­ing of bal­lots.

Democrats urged pa­tience, but Repub­li­cans at­tempted to sow doubt in the count­ing. U.S. Sen. Marco Ru­bio, R-Fla., has aimed a fusil­lade of tweets at Snipes.

Scott re­in­forced that no­tion, say­ing Thurs­day night — at a cam­paign event held out­side the of­fi­cial Gover­nor’s Man­sion in Tal­la­has­see – that the Florida Depart­ment of Law En­force­ment should in­ves­ti­gate.

And two of the most pop­u­lar prime time hosts on Fox News, Sean Han­nity and Laura In­gra­ham, took up the is­sue on their pro­grams Thurs­day night, con­demn­ing Snipes and rais­ing sus­pi­cions about what’s hap­pen­ing in Broward. Fox is the pres­i­dent’s fa­vorite source of in­for­ma­tion, and Han­nity is a ma­jor sup­porter who ap­peared with Trump at a cam­paign rally on Mon­day.

The League of Women Vot­ers of Florida said Fri­day said that par­ti­san crit­ics should back off and give elec­tions su­per­vi­sors time to do their jobs.

The po­lit­i­cal rhetoric isn’t likely to cool soon.

The Florida Repub­li­can Party an­nounced that U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz, a Pan­han­dle Repub­li­can known for his in­cen­di­ary rhetoric dur­ing ap­pear­ances on Fox News, would have an ap­pear­ance late Fri­day morn­ing out­side the Broward Elec­tions Of­fice where vote count­ing has been tak­ing place.

GETTY

“If you look at Broward County, they have had a hor­ri­ble his­tory,” Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump said be­fore board­ing Marine One with First Lady Me­la­nia Trump on Fri­day.

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