Your Voice 2016
Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced at a press conference Thursday that he will not extend the voter registration deadline in the state, despite concerns Hurricane Matthew will hamper registration efforts.
“I’m not going to extend it,” the Republican told reporters in Tallahassee. “Everybody has had a lot of time to register. On top of that, we have lots of opportunities to vote: early voting, absentee voting, Election Day. So I don’t intend to make any changes.”
Tropical weather from Hurricane Matthew is already making landfall in Florida, where President Obama today declared a state of emergency in several counties. The full force of the category 4 storm—which could escalate to a category 5 hurricane by the time it strikes the coast—is expected to begin battering Florida within hours. Scott has asked more than 1.4 million people who are in the path of the hurricane to flee, warning residents, “This storm will kill you.”
The deadline for Floridians to register to is Tuesday, October 11. Nearby South Carolina, which Matthew is expected to strike as it moves up the coast, has already extended its voter registration deadline.
When a reporter at the Tallahassee press conference raised the point that absentee ballots were being mailed out this week and that the storm may prevent residents from voting early, the governor said people could vote early, by mail and on Election Day.
“It’s not like you have just one day in our state” to vote, Scott said. “You’ve got a lot of opportunities to vote, so it won’t have an impact.”