Ethics Watchdog Calls for Investigation of FL Congressional Candidates for Illegal Electioneering
Updated: Mar 19, 2019
FACT Requests Investigation into Senator Bill Nelson and Congressman Alcee Hastings Attending Pre-Election Rally at Polling Location
(Washington, D.C.) – August 31, 2018 –The non-partisan ethics watchdog group, the Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT), filed a complaint with the Florida Department of State against U.S. Senator Bill Nelson and U.S. Representative Alcee Hastings for participating in a political rally at the same address as an early voting location.
According to the complaint,on August 19, 2018, Senator Bill Nelson and Congressman Alcee Hastings both attended a political rally hosted by the Democratic Women’s Club of West Broward entitled “Stronger Together To Get-Out-The Vote.” The rally was held at the Sunrise Civic Center Theater. The Civic Center’s address, 10610 West Oakland Park Boulevard, Sunrise, Florida 33351, is the same address as an early voting location in Broward County. According to the invite, other candidates for federal and statewide office were also expected to be in attendance.
Florida law prohibits electioneering near a polling place. According to Fla. Stat. 102.031(4)(a): No person, political committee, or other group or organization may solicit votersinside the polling place orwithin 100 feet of the entrance to any polling place, a polling room where the polling place is also a polling room, an early voting site. . . .”
“With having almost 100 years of combined experience holding public office, it is perplexing that Senator Nelson and Congressman Alcee Hastings would choose to have a campaign rally at the same address as a polling place.,” said Kendra Arnold, Executive Director, Foundation for Accountability and Civic Trust (FACT). “It is simply not a coincidence and the likely cross over between the events, an attempt to influence the outcome of an election, needs to be investigated further,” Arnold added.
Since the event invitation also indicated other candidates for federal and state office were going to be in attendance, FACT is also requesting that the State investigate their involvement in this apparent violation of Fla. Statute section 102.031(4)(a).
A link to the full complaint can be found here.
FACT is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting accountability, ethics, and transparency in government and civic arenas. For more on FACT, visit: http://www.factdc.org/.