The Florida Secretary of State has ordered a recount in three tight election races, including the governor’s race that included Democratic candidate Andrew Gillum, who could become the state’s first Black governor.
Secretary of State Ken Dentzer officially ordered a machine recount Saturday in the races for:
- Governor, between Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and Republican Ron DeSantis
- U.S. Senate, between Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, and incumbent U.S. Sen. Bill a Democrat
- Agriculture Commissioner, between Democrat Nikki Reid and Republican Matt Caldwell
The decision announced Saturday afternoon is a new curve in a race considered a crucial measure in the country’s support or lack thereof for President Donald Trump, and also viewed as crucial in the control of the Congress. Democrats took back control of the U.S. House in last Tuesday’s general election after picking up several seats from the Republican party.
Black Americans, in particular, were eying the governor’s races in Florida and Georgia, where Black candidates were vying to make history, Gillum as the first Black governor in Florida and Stacey Abrams as the nation’s first Black woman governor. Both races have generated widespread claims of voting irregularities and potential fraud.
In Florida, Andrew Gillum conceded at about 11 p.m. ET Tuesday night, even though the vote count was razor tight and supporters hung to hope for an official win. Later in the week, as the continued count pushed the tallies for each candidate even close to one another, Gillum said he was looking forward to a count of the votes.
In Georgia, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams stuck by her refusal to concede to Republican Brian Kemp, the former secretary of state who not only ran for that office but also oversaw the election. As of Friday, the candidates’ tallies were less than 2 percentage points from one another.
The Associated Press has reported that Kemp’s office put more than 50,000 voting applications on hold – 70 percent of them from people of color – because of the state’s controversial law that requires an exact name match between identification and voter rolls.
President Donald Trump has entered the fray, taking to Twitter to declare victory for Republicans.
Mayor Gillum conceded on Election Day and now Broward County has put him “back into play.” Bill Nelson conceded Election – now he’s back in play!? This is an embarrassment to our Country and to Democracy!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 9, 2018
On Friday, Trump tweeted, “Mayor Gillum conceded on Election Day and now Broward county has put him ‘back into play.’ Bill Nelson conceded Election – now he’s back in play!? This is an embarrassment to our country and to Democracy.”
In response, Gillum tweeted, “What’s embarrassing to democracy is not counting every vote – and you, of course. Count every vote.”
Concessions are not legally binding but are more of a courtesy.
What’s embarrassing to democracy is not counting every vote — and you, of course.
Count every vote. https://t.co/ZfrBBcymrg
— Andrew Gillum (@AndrewGillum) November 9, 2018
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Source: Entertainment – The Grio