Florida elections, 2013

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Florida election information for 2013 is listed below.
This page will be updated regularly throughout the year.

Voting absentee

AbsenteeMap.png
See also: Absentee Voting

Eligibility

All voters are eligible to vote absentee in Florida. There are no special eligibility requirements for voting absentee.[1]

Deadlines

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 p.m. on election day.[1]

Military and overseas voting

For full details, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program here.

Voting early

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 10 days before an election and ends three days prior to election day.[2] 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.

2013 developments

Senator Miguel Diaz de la Portilla, 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.[3]

The newest early voting proposal would have given 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 would require all elections supervisors to submit a report three months prior to a general election, outlining preparations for that election.[3]

In addition, Florida's election supervisors asked the legislature for the following changes with respect to early voting:[4]

  • 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).

2012 developments

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.[3]

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.[5]

See also

References