* As it unsurprisingly turns out, no, there was no game-changing fraud afoot in the Florida mid-term election, just the usual incompetence and cluelessness in the usual places. So much for the politically-charged, “rampant fraud” allegations of Senator-elect Rick Scott, who, ironically, should recognize fraud when he sees it. He oversaw it with Columbia-HCA.
* The voting fiasco here is a function of what media members recognize as sausage-making. Process never looks as good as final product–whether it’s the making of a documentary or a law. It’s never pretty behind the scenes, whether it’s editing or legislative compromising. When it comes to voting, most elections don’t warrant re-counts, thereby precluding the sort of scrutiny that would remind us about ballot design, voter carelessness or weird signature scenarios. In fact, from 2000 to 2016, there were only 26 statewide recounts nationally. That’s out of more than 4,600 statewide general elections.
In Florida, we had (an unprecedented) three statewide recounts. That resulted in a lot of sausage and more national ridicule for the state that never really recovered from “hanging chads” notoriety. While incompetence is not the same as corruption, it’s hardly consoling.