Broward County Elections Supervisor Brenda Snipes was recently assisted by two organizations financed by billionaire activist George Soros in response to a lawsuit from a conservative group accusing her of maintaining inaccurate voter rolls.
Snipes is currently at the center of controversy in the Florida recount drama, with multiple Republicans calling for her removal due to past legal problems. “There is no question that Broward County Supervisor of Elections Brenda Snipes failed to comply with Florida law on multiple counts, undermining Floridians’ confidence in our electoral process,” former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush tweeted on Monday. “Supervisor Snipes should be removed from her office following the recounts.”
Last March, a judge ruled that Snipes had implemented a “reasonable effort to remove the names of ineligible voters from the official lists of eligible voters by reason of death or change of address.” The ruling came in response to a 2017 case in which the American Civil Rights Union used data it had collected about population, age and citizenship to claim that Snipes was failing to take steps to maintain accurate voter rosters.
In the case, Snipe testified that ineligible voters do indeed “slip through,” the Sun-Sentinel reported:
The ACRU case focused on voter lists that included dead people, 130-year-olds, felons, duplicate registrations, invalid commercial addresses and that had “improbably high” voter registration rates. Snipes testified that some people who have been registered “are not eligible to vote and they slip through.”
“This is a huge job that has so many pieces,” especially when dealing with a roll of 1.1 million voters that is constantly changing, Snipes said. “Sure, you’re going to have mistakes.”
During the trial, former Colorado Secretary of State Scott Gessler testified about ways Snipes could be doing more. She could use cumulative Social Security death information to determine if any voters have died out of state. She could access the state’s Driver and Vehicle Information Database, called DAVID, to more quickly identify voters whose addresses have changed. She could review jury forms that indicate when individuals are excused from service because they no longer live in the county or are non-citizens.
Notably, the intervener in the case on Snipes’ behalf was the SEIU union’s United Healthcare Workers East, which was represented on the matter by lawyers from Demos and Project Vote, both of which are funded by Soros. An intervener allows a non-party to join an ongoing lawsuit.
Stuart Naifeh, senior counsel at Demos, was the lead attorney in the case.
Also representing the intervener on behalf of the litigation against Snipes were attorneys Catherine M. Flanagan and Michelle Kanter Cohen from Project Vote.
Demos says its mission is to ensure “an equal say in our democracy and an equal chance in our economy.” Soros’s Open Society Foundations is a prominent donor to Demos.
Demos has pushed for what it calls “fair redistricting” and an end to “prison gerrymandering” in the 2020 Census; in other words, counting incarcerated people in the census. At issue is whether to count incarcerated people as “residents” of prison locations. A 2014 study examining voter trends of prisoners in three states found that in each state — New York, New Mexico and North Carolina — the majority of convicts voted for Democrats.
Demos previously worked closely with the now defunct ACORN, even putting out joint reports with ACORN and Project Vote. ACORN shuttered after its workers were ensnared in a voter registration fraud scandal.
The other intervener in the Snipes case, Project Vote, is not only a grantee of Soros’s Open Society Foundations but is listed as a partner. “Another form of partnership is also of enormous importance to the Soros foundations: the relationships with grantees that over the years have developed into alliances in pursuing crucial parts of the open society agenda,” reads an Open Society Foundations report listing Project Vote as a partner.
The alliance between Project Vote and Soros’s Foundations was “for registering voters in the United States and analyzing election law.”
When Snipes and 248 county election officials were presented with a notice from conservative judicial groups threatening a lawsuit last year if they did not cull the voting rolls of deceased or ineligible voters, Demos and the heavily Soros-financed Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University Law School offered to help.
Over the weekend, Florida Gov. Rick Scott, whose senate election is up for recount, called on Florida’s Department of Law Enforcement to investigate possible irregularities in ballot offices in southern Florida amid questions about the slow pace of Broward’s ballot counting and past wrongdoings by Snipes.
A judge ruled that Snipes destroyed ballots too soon in a critical 2016 Congressional race in which former Democratic National Convention (DNC) Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz won reelection.
Snipes was also ordered by a judge earlier this year to change the way she handles mail-in ballots after her office was accused of opening them in secret.
Over the weekend, the Miami Herald reported that Snipes’ office mixed 20 rejected ballots with a sampling of 205 valid provisional ones in the current election. The discrepancy was reportedly found only after uproar from the Republican Party resulted in the Broward County canvassing board inspecting those provisional ballots.
Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.
Joshua Klein contributed research to this article.
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