Florida elections, 2012
|1 2012 Elections|
|2 Eligibility to Vote|
|2.1 Primary election|
|2.2 General election|
|3 Voting absentee|
|3.3 Military and overseas voting|
|4 Voting early|
|5 See also|
The state of Florida held elections in 2012. Below are the dates of note:
- Signature filing deadline: February 1, 2012 (Measures only) & June 8, 2012
- Primary date: August 14, 2012
- General election date: November 6, 2012
|On the 2012 ballot|| Click here for all |
November 6, 2012
|U.S. Senate (1 seat)||Preview Article|
|U.S. House (27 seats)|
|State Senate (40 seats)||Preview Article|
|State House (120 seats)|
|Ballot measures (11 measures)||Preview Article|
For election results in the 50 states, see our November 6, 2012 election results page
Elections by type
|U.S. Senate, Florida General Election, 2012|
|Democratic||Bill Nelson Incumbent||55.2%||4,523,451|
|Source: Florida Election Watch "U.S. Senator"|
Florida received two additional seats from redistricting.
|Members of the U.S. House from Florida -- Partisan Breakdown|
|Party||As of November 2012||After the 2012 Election|
|Total||25|| 27 |
Heading into the election, Republicans maintained partisan control in the state house.
|Florida House of Representatives|
|Party||As of November 5, 2012||After the 2012 Election|
- See also: Florida 2012 ballot measures
|Amendment 1||Healthcare||Prevents penalties for not purchasing healthcare coverage in order to comply with federal healthcare reforms|
|Amendment 2||Taxes||Allows for property tax discounts for disabled veterans|
|Amendment 3||State budgets||Replaces existing revenue limits with a new limitation based on inflation and population changes|
|Amendment 4||Taxes||Amends commercial and non-homestead property taxes|
|Amendment 5||Judicial reform||Gives the Legislature increased control over the judicial branch.|
|Amendment 6||Abortion||Prohibits public funds for abortions|
|Amendment 8||Religion||Repeals ban of public dollars for religious funding|
|Amendment 9||Taxes||Authorizes the legislature to totally or partially exempt surviving spouses of military veterans or first responders who died in the line of duty from paying property taxes|
|Amendment 10||Taxes||Provides an exemption from ad valorem taxes levied by local governments on tangible personal property that's value is greater than $25,000 but less than $50,000|
|Amendment 11||Taxes||Authorizes counties and municipalities to offer additional tax exemptions on homes of low-income seniors.|
|Amendment 12||Government Administration||Revises selection process for student member of Board of Governors of State University System|
For the state of Florida, below is a glimpse of some of the local measures that appeared or were scheduled to appear on ballots in 2012.
- Oviedo Referendum Question (November 2012)
- Longwood Referendum Question (November 2012)
- Longwood AMD Questions, 3 (November 2012)
- Casselberry Referendum Question (November 2012)
- Seminole County Referendum Question (November 2012)
- North Port Ordinance No. 2012-15 Question (November 2012)
- North Port City Auditor Removal Amendment Question (November 2012)
- North Port City Manager Removal Amendment Question (November 2012)
- North Port City Mayoral Title Amendment Question (November 2012)
- North Port City District Residency Requirement Amendment Question (November 2012)
Eligibility to Vote
- See also: Voting in the 2012 primary elections
Florida was one of 21 states to use a strictly closed primary system. Voters were required to register to vote in the primary by July 16, 2012, which was 29 days before the primary took place. (Information about registering to vote)
- See also: Voting in the 2012 general elections
The deadline to register to vote was 28 days prior to the election day, which in 2012 was October 9.
Note: Some states had a voter registration deadline 30 days prior to the election but because this may have falled on a weekend and Columbus Day was on Monday, October 8th, some states extended the deadline to October 9, 2012.
- See also: Absentee Voting
All voters are eligible to vote absentee in Florida. There are no special eligibility requirements for voting absentee. An excuse is only required if a voter waits until Election Day to pick up or have delivered the absentee ballot.
To vote absentee, an absentee ballot application must be received by the election office at least six days prior to the election. A returned absentee ballot must then be received by the elections office by 7:00 p.m. on Election Day.
Military and overseas voting
For full details regarding military and overseas voting, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program.
- See also: Early voting
Florida is one of 34 states that has early voting with no specific requirements as to who can vote early. Early voting begins at least 10 days before an election and ends three days prior to Election Day. The average number of days prior to an election that voters can cast an early ballot is 21 days in states with a definitive starting date.
Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla (R), who sponsored the 2011 law that reduced the number of early voting days in Florida, authored a bill which would provide increased early voting opportunities.
The proposal was to give counties an extra day for early voting before a general election and allow them to keep polls open for 14 hours. In addition, the bill required all elections supervisors to submit a report three months prior to a general election, outlining preparations for that election.
In addition, Florida's election supervisors asked the legislature for the following changes with respect to early voting:
- Require that the Legislature comply with the 75-word ballot summary requirement that is required for citizen-led ballot initiatives (Lawmakers exempted themselves from that requirement years ago, and ordered the full text of several amendments to be on the November ballot, a leading contributor to long lines at polling places).
- Require eight days of early voting in primary and general elections "with the option for supervisors to provide additional days not to exceed 14 days." (In 2011 the legislature reduced the number of early voting days from 14 to 8).
- Give election supervisors the leeway to select more early voting sites (currently limited to election offices, city halls and libraries).
In 2011, the Republican-controlled legislature cut the number of early voting days from 12 to eight. However, due to a ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the counties of Collier, Hardee, Hendry, Hillsborough, and Monroe would retain their full 12 days of early voting. That is because these counties are covered by Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
The Justice Department has since agreed with the state's early voting schedule provided that the five counties must offer 96 hours of voting between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. over eight days, the maximum under the law. Both the counties and the state have agreed to the terms, so the case should now be thrown out.
- Florida Department of State, "Register to Vote," accessed April 25, 2012
- Florida Election Division, "2012 Voter Guide" accessed May 7, 2012
- Florida Division of Elections Website, "Absentee Voting," accessed December 18, 2013
- Florida Division of Elections Website, "Early Voting," accessed December 18, 2013
- SunSentinel.com, "2011 elex law sponsor files bill to change early voting," January 7, 2013
- Miami Herald, "Election supervisors want up to 14 early voting days," January 10, 2012
- Reuters, "Florida restores early voting days, moves back primary," May 3, 2013
- The New York Times, "Court Approves Schedule for Florida Early Voting," September 13, 2012