In 2016, a federal judge forced Florida to make sure voters were notified of problems with mail-in ballot signatures. This year lawmakers want to make the change permanent. The measures (HB 105/SB 544) would require county election supervisors to allow voters whose ballots have been flagged for a signature “mismatch” to correct the problem by completing a signed affidavit. During the 2012 election, more than 23,000 mail-in ballots were invalidated because they bore signatures that didn’t match those held on file by supervisors.
“Sometimes it’s due to circumstances beyond their control: Parkinson’s disease, degenerative muscle diseases, problems with loss of vision,” said Rep. Evan Jenne (D-Hollywood). “Signatures can change gradually or rapidly. So, those folks that fall into that category, when their signatures don’t match up, for whatever the reason, they’ll be able to come in and seek a remedy for it and have their ballot counted.”
The House bill, which unanimously passed the chamber’s Oversight, Transparency & Administration Subcommittee Thursday, would mandate that supervisors contact voters if their mail-in ballot has been found to have a signature mismatch issue.