- Fla. Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) announced Thurs. that 20 ex-felons who voted in the 2020 election have been charged for breaking the state's election laws on felon voting rights.
- This comes as part of an effort by the Office of Election Crimes and Security (OECS), which was created by the state legislature this year.
- Though he didn't specify the exact locations where the arrests were made, the Gov. said the majority were in Palm, Broward, and Miami-Dade counties. If convicted, those arrested face a $5k fine and five years in prison.
- In 2018, Fla. voters passed an amendment to the state's constitution to restore voting rights for ex-felons upon completion of their sentences, except those convicted of murder or felony sexual assault.
- Out of the 11M Floridians who voted in 2020, 262 election fraud complaints were made, 75 of which were referred to law enforcement.
- DeSantis reiterated his long-held opinion that Fla.'s 2020 elections were "efficient" and "transparent," but he noted that the charges were "just the first step" and the OECS is looking into those who may have voted in two states and undocumented immigrants.
- Republican narrative, as provided by Townhall. This is what leadership and accountability look like. While the 2020 election went smoothly, DeSantis knows those who managed to subvert the system must be punished to maintain the integrity of all votes.
- Democratic narrative, as provided by Washington Post. Punishing 20 people out of millions of voters hardly has anything to do with election integrity and everything to do with DeSantis - a potential 2024 GOP presidential candidate - intimidating voters. His attempt to look tough on crime will only discourage those who might be confused about their eligibility from voting.