Whatever his motivations, Gov. Rick Scott deserves praise for his about-face on state election law. Scott said last week that local election supervisors should be allowed to offer as many as 14 days of early voting during the next election and increase the number of voting hours. He signed a bill last year that cut the number of days to eight from 14 and reduced the number of hours. The governor also reversed course by calling for early voting to be allowed to resume on the Sunday before Election Day. Black churches brought voters to the polls on that Sunday — an effort dubbed “souls to the polls” — before the bill signed by Scott ended that effort.
University of Florida political science professor Dan Smith co-authored research that found the state’s election law changes disproportionately affected black voters. Although black voters comprised 14 percent of the electorate in the 2012 general election, they made up more than 22 percent of early voters, the research found.
Smith also studied a new requirement that voters cast provisional ballots if they moved counties but didn’t update their addresses. Black and Hispanic voters were more likely to cast provisional ballots than white voters in the November election and nearly twice as likely to have those ballots rejected, according to the research.
Full Article: Florida Election Law: Voting Done Right | NewsChief.com.