Voter registration review tour runs through Oct. 9

Secretary of state travels across Fla. to meet with local supervisors of elections

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - For the second time in two years, a review of voter registration is being touted as a way to keep eligible voters on the rolls and weed out the people who are trying to vote illegally. Opponents say it's just a way to suppress the minority vote.

For years, Florida voters have been plagued with problems at the polls. Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner is now traveling across the state to meet with local supervisors of elections.

The League of Women Voters said the group has mixed reactions about the tour.

"We're encouraged that he's working directly with the Supervisors of Elections because that's where the rubber hits the road," said Lisa Hall of League of Women Voters. "We're skeptical because the state really doesn't have a good track record of doing this appropriately."

Opponents held a phone conference Thursday morning to call the tour a "voter purge" and is a way to deny minorities the right to vote.

"This is an effort by Rick Scott to send his lieutenant out to convince his Supervisors of Elections they need to do a purge," said Allison Tant of the Florida Democratic Party.

Detzner in a press release said, "It is my duty to defend the right to vote in Florida. Project Integrity will provide needed information on the process used to safeguard our voter rolls."

"This is a waste of time and money," said Tant. "This is tax dollars being spent that's unnecessary."

The last time the state tried to track down non-eligible voters, it found 182,000 potential non-citizens -- the number was eventually reduced to fewer than 200.

"They need to leave it to the Supervisor of Elections to do their job," said Hall. "They're doing an outstanding job in Florida."

The Secretary of State left his office in Tallahassee to kick off the tour in Panama City. His next stop is in Jacksonville. The tour will go through Oct. 9.

Other stops along the tour include Orlando, Sarasota and Fort Lauderdale.

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