Scott suspends Broward County official Brenda Snipes over 'widespread issues with voting'

Outgoing Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) issued an executive order on Friday to immediately suspend Broward County election chief Brenda Snipes following widespread criticism of the county’s vote tallying in November's midterm elections.

“Every eligible voter in Florida deserves their vote to be counted and should have confidence in Florida’s elections process," Scott said in a statement. "After a series of inexcusable actions, it’s clear that there needs to be an immediate change in Broward County and taxpayers should no longer be burdened by paying a salary for a Supervisor of Elections who has already announced resignation.”


Snipes submitted her resignation earlier this month after Republicans accused her of illegal activity during the recounts in Florida’s Senate and gubernatorial races.

Scott, one of Snipes's fiercest critics, cited “widespread issues with voting” and “misfeasance, incompetence and neglect of duty” as reasons for suspending the election official.

Voting in Broward County this cycle took longer than other Florida counties and was marred by allegations of misconduct by election overseers.

Several Republicans, including President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden, Sanders lead field in Iowa poll The Memo: Cohen fans flames around Trump Memo Comey used to brief Trump on dossier released: report MORE, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) and Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioKevin McLaughlin tapped to serve as NRSC executive director for 2020 Senate votes to end US support for Saudi war, bucking Trump Senators offer measure naming Saudi crown prince 'responsible' for Khashoggi slaying MORE (R-Fla.), alleged possible voter fraud.

"If you look at Broward County, they have had a horrible history," Trump told reporters at the White House earlier in the month. "And if you look at the person, in this case a woman, involved, she has had a horrible history, and all of the sudden they’re finding votes out of nowhere and Rick Scott, who won, you know it was close, who won by a comfortable margin, every couple of hours it goes down by a little bit.”

Florida law enforcement has so far not seen evidence of criminal conduct in the state's elections.

Republicans were ultimately successful in both contests, with Scott unseating Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William NelsonMcCaskill: 'Too many embarrassing uncles' in the Senate Bill Nelson uses farewell address to remind colleagues ‘no one person is above the law’ Coal supporter Manchin named top Dem on Senate Energy Committee MORE (D) in the hotly contested Florida Senate race and Ron DeSantisRonald Dion DeSantisGillum to speak at gathering of top Dem donors: report GOP opens door to new NC election amid fraud claims Gillum reached out to O’Rourke amid 2020 speculation: report MORE (R) edging out Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D) to become the Sunshine State’s next governor.

Scott appointed Peter Antonacci, who currently serves as the President and CEO of Enterprise Florida, to replace Snipes. He has served as a state attorney in Palm Beach County.