That huge swirling menace in the Gulf known as Hurricane Michael has the attention of Floridians four weeks before Nov. 6, Election Day. But a disturbance of another kind is intensifying, and it involves voting. Two controversies erupted at once Tuesday, one over a state online voter registration system and the other involving the storm’s disruption of the last day that Florida residents could become eligible voters in 2018. Complaints multiplied from people who say the state’s online registration portal was not working. The portal, which was a year old on Oct. 1, has had glitches before but never this close to a voter registration deadline, and it prompted threats of legal action.
“It’s extremely troubling. This is one moment where the states’ online systems need to operate,” said Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
… The fast-approaching storm’s disruption of the last day of voter registration prompted Scott’s administration to extend the registration deadline by one day, but only in those counties that planned to close all or part of Tuesday because of the hurricane.