Rick Scott keeps suggesting there has been voter fraud in Florida’s election process but can’t come up with any evidence when asked for it – yet Fox News hosts don’t seem to find anything wrong with that picture.
Scott, Florida’s Republican outgoing governor turned Senate candidate, is narrowly leading in the vote count. That has triggered a recount. Scott seems suspiciously determined to sow distrust in the outcome.
On this week’s Fox News Sunday, he was asked by host Chris Wallace, “Governor, do you have any hard evidence that there was actual fraud or is actual fraud going on? And, if so, by whom?” Scott could not cite any such thing. Wallace repeatedly pressed Scott on the point and underscored his lack of hard evidence but never challenged him on his obvious dishonesty.
On Monday night, a similar pattern recurred on Fox's The Story with Martha MacCallum. But MacCallum was less challenging.
Scott continued baselessly suggesting that fraud had occurred and he disingenuously painted himself as the good guy fighting this non-existent crime.
SCOTT: My goal is to make sure that this [recount] is done properly. That’s why I asked the FLDE [Florida Department of Law Enforcement] to come in and do an investigation. Our attorney general demanded that happen. I’ve asked the sheriffs to be vigilant. We want to make sure we have a free and fair election.
MacCallum replied, “Yes.” She did not point out that the FLDE found no evidence of fraud or criminal activity. Ditto for Scott's monitors from own his Department of State. Nor did MacCallum note that Florida Attorney General and Scott ally Pam Bondi had tried to pressure the FLDE to further investigate for voter fraud anyway. Bondi is also a Fox News darling who may land at the network when her term is up in 2019.
At about 5:30, MacCallum brought up the subject of fraud – albeit in the most sympathetic way.
MACCALLUM: You said that Bill Nelson’s lawyers, the current senator, say that non-citizens should be able to vote. Do you have any evidence that any non-citizens did vote in this election?
SCOTT: Well, what we know is his, Bill Nelson’s lawyer, complained when the canvassing board, they threw out a non-citizen vote, saying they should be able to vote in this election [MacCallum nodded]. So it’s something we have to continue to monitor. Every supervisor of elections’ responsibility is to make sure that non-citizens don’t vote.
MACCALLUM: But you don’t have any evidence that that actually happened in this election. Or do you?
SCOTT: Well, what happens is you review this as much as you can and then after the election, you’re able to do it again.
Again, MacCallum failed to inform her viewers of significant information: that Nelson’s lead attorney “said in a statement that the lawyer at a meeting of election officials in Palm Beach County was ‘not someone we had authorized to make such an objection. Non-citizens cannot vote in U.S. elections.’”
Nor did MacCallum ask what Scott had done during his two terms as governor to fix his state’s voting system that seems so dysfunctional.
But worse than any of that, MacCallum failed to challenge Scott for deliberately sowing doubt about the validity of the election when he can’t come up with any concrete reason to distrust the results.
Instead, MacCallum changed the subject to ask if Scott will be there on Tuesday for a photograph of the incoming Republican senator with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
In case you’re wondering, yes, Scott plans to take part.
Watch MacCallum give a pass to someone dishonestly trying to undermine an election below, from the November 12, 2018 The Story with Martha MacCallum.