President Donald Trump’s unfounded claims that millions of people voted illegally in November brought a torrent of criticism Wednesday from Florida elections experts and legislators, who demanded a federal investigation they say will prove Trump wrong. On his sixth day in office, Trump took to Twitter to say he will seek a “major investigation into VOTER FRAUD, including those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and even those registered to vote who are dead (and many for a long time).” At least three in Trump’s inner circle fit his description of voter fraud. His chief campaign strategist, Stephen Bannon, was registered in New York and Florida until Wednesday. His nominee to run the Treasury department, Steven Mnuchin, is registered to vote in New York and California, CNN reported. And his own daughter, Tiffany Trump, has been registered to vote in two states, New York and Pennsylvania. Florida Democrats pounced. In a letter sent Wednesday to Gov. Rick Scott’s top elections official, Senate Democratic leader Oscar Braynon urged a state investigation of voter fraud “in the interests of reassuring the citizens of this state and Mr. Trump that his election to the presidency was beyond reproach.”
Scott, a major Trump supporter, sidestepped a question at a news conference later in Broward County on whether a state investigation is warranted. But he did say Florida ran clean elections in 2016. “We worked very hard with the secretary of state’s office and supervisors of election to make sure we had honest and fair elections,” Scott told reporters in Fort Lauderdale.
A spokeswoman for Secretary of State Ken Detzner said the elections division was “not aware of documented findings of illegal immigrants or noncitizens voting in Florida during the 2016 general election.” Florida is a state with among the highest numbers of noncitizens who aren’t eligible to vote.
Across the state, county election supervisors called Trump’s bluff. Certain that the 2016 election was free of rampant voter fraud, they want the Department of Justice, now under Trump’s control, to prove it.