Q&A of the Day – Will Bloomberg’s effort to “buy” Florida felons impact the election?
Each day I’ll feature a listener question that’s been submitted by one of these methods.
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Today’s entry: How will Bloomberg paying the convicts retribution affect the election outcome?
Bottom Line: In Friday’s Q&A I dove into the prospect that Michael Bloomberg and the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition have potentially been unlawfully paying off felon debts in a coordinated effort to have them vote for November 3rd's election. This is now being investigated by Florida’s AG Ashley Moody and potentially the FDLE and FBI to whom Moody penned a letter explaining the apparent violations of the law (which include clear violations at both the state and federal level). While that process plays out you raise another important question. What could the impact of these voter registrations be on the Presidential Election cycle in Florida? The answer is, it could be considerable.
The Bloomberg/Florida Rights Restoration Coalition’s potentially illegal campaign to pay off debts, has focused solely on minority felons (predominantly black) who have registered to vote and owe $1,500 or less in financial obligations. That’s a purposefully narrow target and a study from the 2016 Florida election cycle demonstrates exactly why they’re the focus. According to a 2016 study of Florida’s general election conducted by Meredith and Morse:
- 87% of Black ex-felons are registered Democrats in Florida
That’s a higher level of Democrat voter registration than any other studied group of potential voters. As of last Tuesday, a minimum of 31,100 felons fitting those qualifiers have had their debts paid off thus far. If 87% of them were allowed to vote due to the debts being paid off – the estimated net vote gain for Democrats – without any additional felons having their debt paid off – would be 23,014 more votes for Democrats. How big of a deal are 23,014 additional Democrat votes in Florida? Enough to change the outcomes of these election wins for Republicans in the past twenty years:
- 2018 Senate win for Rick Scott
- George W. Bush’s Presidential win in 2000
That’s without getting into the implications of close Congressional races for the House or state/local elections. But literally, if the practice being attempted right now had been executed successfully, Al Gore would have been President of the United States and Bill Nelson would still be a US Senator from Florida. This is why they’re do it. This is why Bloomberg is spending $100 million in Florida to support Biden aside from the $17 million plus he’s paid off felons with thus far. The term “buying the election” is nothing new but the methodology being attempted is a literal effort to buy Florida elections – hence why it appears to be an unlawful act of bribery and must be fully investigated and prosecuted as necessary. We have a literal instance of a former Democrat Presidential candidate who doesn't even live in our state attempting to buy Florida’s elections.