Is Broward Elections Chief Responsible For Electing Gov. Rick Scott?







A good argument can be made that Broward County is responsible for Gov. Rick Scott.

Broward significantly under performed in the 2010 and 2014 elections. Some contend that turning out more votes in this Democratic-heavy county would have blocked Scott’s election.

The question, of course, is who is to blame?

Surely, the Florida Democratic Party must shoulder a good deal of the responsibility.

The party’s Get-Out-The-Vote effort was horrendous, as proven by the election of the most flawed Republican gubernatorial candidate in years: Scott. Remember the biggest Medicare fraud in history by a company run by Scott?

The blame for Scott does not end with the Democrats. Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes has not done enough to encourage voting.



Brenda Snipes

Brenda Snipes


For years Snipes was responsible for not putting return postage on absentee ballots. Only after the 2014 election did Snipes agree to spend $1.46 for postage on each ballot that is returned. She only agreed to do it under pressure from County Commissioners.

But that was too late to do anything about Scott.  He had already been re-elected.

“Commissioner Stacy Ritter was among those criticizing Snipes for lackluster voter turnout efforts that haven’t changed with the times. Snipes said she was looking at communicating with younger voters via social media, and Ritter said Snipes should have figured that out years ago,” reported the Sun-Sentinel.

How lackluster has Snipes been?

My wife has a co-worker from Cuba who became an American citizen three years ago. After leaving her swearing-in along with dozens of others at the Fort Lauderdale Courthouse, all she wanted to do was register to vote. She was not alone. Many in this group of freshly-minted Americans wanted to exercise their new right to vote in the very next election.

Instead of having a registration table at the swearing in ceremony to encourage this participation in democracy, these Americans had to go online and find out how to register.

A registration table to make it convenient?  That is Voters Registration 101, Brenda. If people want to register badly there is a good chance they will vote.

That is only one anecdote? Yes.

However, I got calls while at the Sun-Sentinel regularly from would-be voters who complained that Snipes’ office was both unfriendly to consumers and made it difficult for them to register.

And what about any effort encouraging turnout?  Snipes office is sadly lacking in that respect, too.

She did not lead a fight in Tallahassee for longer hours at the polls.  In some cases, she fought against convenient polling places. Apparently, she also is not doing enough to train her workers.

Sun-Sentinel editorial editor Rosemary O’Hara wrote that she was unsure her vote counted in 2014 after seeing Elections Office incompetance at the polls. She recounted computer glitches (“I saw a guy held up for many minutes because the computer didn’t recognize the street on which he lived: Fort Lauderdale’s famous Victoria Park Road.”) and a staff ill-prepared to deal with them.

That’s a horrendous way to encourage participation in our democracy, Brenda.

Voters in 2016 have a chance to show their displeasure in Snipes.  She has an opponent — David Brown, who says he has a slew of ideas to increase voter turnout that he will be rolling out.

But in the meantime, Brown has passed me a sheet on Broward’s abysmal voter turnout for the past 15 years. Since Snipes took office in 2003, the poor turnouts have continued.

When you look at the chart below (click to enlarge), remember that Scott won by 61,550 in 2010 and by 64,145 in 2015.


David Brown material



17 Responses to “Is Broward Elections Chief Responsible For Electing Gov. Rick Scott?”

  1. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    The idea that a political consultant should be an Election Official is as unethical as lobbyists or vendors employees being on City or County Boards and I am flabbergasted liberal Democratic Jews – observant or not – can actually propose this!Or Reform-minded Republicans if any are left after the scorched-earth practices of the Tea Party and nutjobs like the Family Research Council, so-called “Freedom Caucus” and other neo-Fascists.
    The plain fact is that APATHY is the reason Rick Scott won the Governorship not once but twice! He won a Primary that he never should have won by simply saying I am rich, that’s all that matters! And stupid rural Republicans brought the coolaid. Then the Democrats who have let their once broadly based party become a balkanized web of special interest groups – Feminists, Leftists, elderly Jews from New York, middle class and working class Blacks, Gays and Lesbians – who turn the general population off – rightly or wrongly – moving the Panhandle, rural, and some Orthodox Jews and wealthier White collar Roman Catholics and blue collar Roman Catholics and Baptists to vote Republican. None of this has anything to do with Broward County where transplanted New York Jews, Blacks, and Gays and Lesbians and a few surviving Irish Catholic Americans and non profit employees of every strip run things from the County Commission to the County School Board – both notoriously corrupt and inept! Nothing to do with the Elections Officials!

    Tell me, why vote if the candidates are a local Commissioner who says when I question a development project – “XXX has been good to me”, a County Commission who supports 80 Million PLUS to the Panthers, a Senator – Bill Nelson – who never answers a letter but always sends e-mails asking for money, and, to be frank, the same for my Democratic President who I supported twice with money.

    YES, the damn COUNTY ELECTIONS DEPARTMENT hasn’t processed my change of address after five attempts over 10 years from Miami-Dade County, but even if I was registered, WHO WOULD I VOTE FOR? Diogenes couldn’t find AN HONEST MAN in the dark, AND I CANT FIND AN HONEST CANDIDATE IN THE DAYLIGHT IN SOUTH FLORIDA!

  2. Call me crazy but says:

    I thought people were inspired to vote by candidates or a want to support their party.

    If there is someone out there who can corral all of those millennials to vote it is David Brown. I cant wait for the DB Campaign Iphone skin that doubles as a nail file.

  3. Broward Voter says:

    It sounds like some Democrats are blaming the SOE for the failings of the County Party.

    It is the job of the SOE to conduct elections, not serve as an arm of the get out the vote effort of the Democratic Party.

    The anecdote about the citizenship ceremony is ridiculous. Down in Dade County both parties have registration tables set up at citizenship ceremonies. Now, I understand that the GOP is almost nonexistent in Broward, but surely the Democrats have the resources to run a simple voter registration table at citizenship ceremonies.

    But of course the most amusing thing about all of this is how most prominent Democrats are afraid to endorse Snipes’ opponent simply because of racial politics.


    I agree with you “Broward Voter.” If Snipes doesn’t do her job of registering new voters, the party’s should be there with a table.

    (Broward might be dominated by Democrats, but the county also has the third biggest number of Republicans in the state. It formally was the second biggest GOP county, but Hillsborough County (Tampa) recently passed it by roughly 6,000. Broward has roughly $239k Republicans. Miami-Dade has the most Republicans with 358k.)

    Obviously, the local parties have some responsibility in the low turnout, too. This is especially true of the Democratic Party, which dominates Broward politics.

  4. Andrew Ladanowski says:

    Buddy is correct, when I did get my citizenship about 3 years ago, there was no table to assist in registering me. This was a perfect opportunity for her staff to go assist people in filling out forms and answering questions or concerns about registering to vote. Hundreds of people in one room who are definitely not registered and are eligible to register.
    David Brown is correct in showing the impact on how many votes were lost in Broward, I didn’t realize the full impact at the state level. Look at the last 2014 election, we under voted by 6%, if we would have good leadership and over voted by as little as 3% we would have seen a different outcome for the governor’s race and the medical marijuana ballot measure.
    Dr. Snipes is lazy and does the minimum amount of work.
    I have heard David, he is intelligent, understands the issues and has some great ideas.

  5. norm price says:

    I had the pleasure of working for Dr. Snipes until I retired and I found her to be a proficient employer and I find it funny that she is being blamed for the lower turnout of voters. Gee Stacy Ritter again makes sure that her husband will get a reward for helping David Brown win such as having Brown buy voting equipment from the company he works for and I hope that Stacy uses her kickback motor scooter to go and vote. David Brown is a political hack and has no knowledge in running a elections office and unless I am wrong which I don’t think I am a lot of counties in Florida saw the decrease in voting which is not Dr. Snipes or other Supervisors of Elections fault and Stacy is always looking out for herself and her political husband and always gets away with illegal maneuvers she is great at.

  6. Talks like a politician says:

    There just might be a reason bigger than Brenda Snipes for low voter turnout in Broward County.
    It jus might be that the same old political hacks ride the election merry-go-round time after time.

    Ritter, Geller, Rich, Sobel, Holness are just a small sample of the names that turn up again and again. Some of them jump from the county level to the state level, from the county level to the state level. Name recognition pays off for them. Few credible candidates oppose them.

    Then, cities bend the rules and allow people who do not live within the city limits run for office. Cases in point: McKinzie in Fort Lauderdale and Duke in Dania Beach.

    Another reason voters remain home is the party line mentality. Both Republicans and Democrats create handy dandy palm cards supporting people along party lines, even for non partisan races. Competence, honestly, ethics do not matter, only party affiliation.

    Lastly, an example of voter disgust is voter fraud. Dr. Snipes’ office accepted over 400 absentee ballots from Dania Beach that included votes by dead people and felons. The votes were turned in by Lisa Duke, the wife of a current city commissioner. Ethical? No. However, acceptable in Broward County. No prosecution because felons do not talk and dead people cannot talk.

    Those reasons in combination with the political tricks that are played by people elected to represent constituents after election days have created an abyss of apathy on the part of voters.

    We don’t appreciate what we have until we lose it. VOTE!!! Use your voice to make positive changes.

  7. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    Wait a minute, besides Miss Price and I, no one else actually ever worked at a Board of Elections or rsgistered voters? I first registered voters for LBJ and in a Baptist Church basement in Plainfield New Jersey while the Rev Dr Martin Luther King spoke upststairs n neither tables was paid for with publicly funded Elections Boards. Since the Adlai Stevenson 1952 Dollars for Democrats Democrats have volunteered to register voters. I totally disagree the problem of turnout is the Election Department or Boards but the lousey candidates n the leftwing loonies here in South Florida who blog n cause chaos n turn off voters but never do anything constructive like rsgistering voters.

  8. BrowardBoomer says:

    I fully support a changing of the guard. David Brown deserves our support and we need to seat him in the Supervisor of Elections office. The few comments made insinuating he is a “political hack” are made from people who know nothing about David. David Brown is brilliant, creative and possesses a strong moral character. He has the ability to see the big picture and the ability to implement ideas successfully. He should have won this seat when he ran against the infamous Miriam Oliphant and he has had the past 15 years to sit back and watch the frightening results of Ms. Snipes’ mistakes, carelessness and the absence of ethics. Let’s rewrite history and give Dave Brown a chance to show us what he can do!

  9. Sam The Sham says:

    I agree that Snipes is a horrible SOE, BUT, it is not her job to push voter turnout. It is her job to conduct an election.

    If the candidates and the parties cannot motivate voters, that is too darn bad. Voting in Broward is the easiest thing in the world, requiring absolutely no sacrifice or extraordinary effort. If voters are too lazy or apathetic, we really don’t need them participating in the process.

  10. Old Timer says:

    The office should be non-partisan. How about if the office was appointed? It is principally ministerial in function.

  11. Andrew Ladanowski says:

    Nov 2012 is where Dr. Snipes incompetency was fully demonstrated. We had numerous examples of poorly allocated resources on election day. We had some precincts that had several hour waiting line and others where people simply just walked in and had no waiting. Some Precincts had as few as 2 people and some have over 4000 registered voters. In my neighborhood at Ramblewood elementary Polling station had two precincts, one precinct had 90 minute line up, and the other one had none.

    The media was reporting line ups and delays all day which discouraged voters from going even to poles with no lines. Those who made it to the poles, saw lines and turned around on election day because of the line ups.

    I was actually surprised how many people were willing to wait hours to just cast a ballot. I highly suggest for everyone to vote absentee, and vote early. Postage is prepaid, you have no excuse not to vote.

  12. cITY aCTIVIST rOBERT wALSH says:

    Neferdidi there talkin about you AGAIN. Dr.Snipes could care less about the jabs that are expressed here. She will win again unless she has a reputable challenge. In my opinion its some of her staff that stink(fat one, the amazon,etc). As far as me being disgruntled about losing my voting rights, she had nothing to do w/ it.I came to her,her staff(some) that pissed me off (huh Brenda)..

  13. Andrew Ladanowski says:

    @6 please substantiate “Lastly, an example of voter disgust is voter fraud. Dr. Snipes’ office accepted over 400 absentee ballots from Dania Beach that included votes by dead people and felons. The votes were turned in by Lisa Duke, the wife of a current city commissioner. Ethical?” No. However, acceptable in Broward County. No prosecution because felons do not talk and dead people cannot talk. What ever info you have please give it to me I will research it. I have found instances of voter fraud and they are being processed by various SOE through out the state. IF you have specific felons email them to browardbeat, he will forward them to me. I will investigate.

  14. I blame David Brown says:

    Had David Brown not lost the election in 2000 to Oliphant who thus was removed from office and replaced by Brenda Snipes, we would have never had Snipes to begin with.

  15. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    Sam the sham comments ditto!

  16. Andrew Ladanowski says:

    @9 I agree with “I agree that Snipes is a horrible SOE, BUT, it is not her job to push voter turnout. It is her job to conduct an election.”
    Dr. Snipes didn’t conduct good elections, she suppressed votes by having long lines at some precincts. She poorly allocated her resources. It’s hard to convince a voter to wait 3 or 4 hours to vote. Run a proper smooth election and more people will vote.

    Dr. Snipes caused more voter suppression than Rick Scott thru either her incompetence or laziness.

  17. Count LF Chodkiewicz Chudzikiewicz says:

    Wait a Minute! Here we go with over the top comments mis-using the English language!
    “Voter Suppression” means PREVENTING VOTERS FROM VOTING! Even if Dr. Snipes is guilty of gross “paperwork screw ups” ANYONE CAN STILL REGISTER IN PERSON AND VOTE!
    It is this kind of mis-use of the English language that drives people like me to stop reading “letters to the editor”, watching cable news – CNN, MS-NBC, FOX NEWS, going to public meetings OR VOTING FOR CANDIDATES WHO TALK LIKE EITHER THE TEA PARTY or THE BLACK or FREEDOM CAUCUSES in Congress!
    I lived in pre-Civil Rights Bill America and remember POLL TAXES, LITERACY TESTS, or just plain physical abuse of African-Americans. That was VOTER SUPPRESSION, don’t anyone DARE COMPARE having to go to register in person and follow up with a phone call with what the African-American population experienced from the end of RECONSTRUCTION into the bloodshed years of the 60s before the Civil Rights Rill was passed!