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Proctor Wants DeSantis To Answer Elections Supervisors' Requests For Flexibility

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Ryan Dailey, WFSU
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Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor speaks with media after delivering letters to Governor Ron DeSantis, asking for more flexibility for elections supervisors heading into the 2020 elections.

Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor is asking Governor Ron DeSantis to consider allowing some changes to the 2020 elections.

The Capitol building was mostly empty Wednesday, as it remains closed to the public because of COVID-19. But Commissioner Bill Proctor still delivered letters, from himself and Florida’s elections supervisors, to the governor’s office.

“We saw long lines in Georgia last week. And we’re going to see longer lines in Florida. Why? Because in Florida, we have three times the population that Georgia has,” Proctor said, referencing hours-long wait times some Georgians reported at polls during the state’s recent election.

Proctor wants DeSantis to answer requests from Florida’s 67 elections supervisors, which the group sent to the governor in April. The supervisors’ letter predicts a shortage of poll workers for the 2020 elections. It asks for flexibility with consolidating and relocating polling places, adding early voting locations, and having the option to extend early voting to 22 days out from the primary and general elections, among other requests.

Proctor says those requests have gone unanswered, with deadlines looming.

“(DeSantis) refuses to engage the people who are in charge, the referees of elections in Florida, this governor will not heed their voices,” Proctor told reporters. “This is a crisis, and it portends something bad that’s looming on the horizon for our voters.”

Proctor is also calling on DeSantis to secure federal CARES Act funds to help with the coming elections.

Ryan Dailey is a reporter/producer for WFSU/Florida Public Radio. After graduating from Florida State University, Ryan went into print journalism working for the Tallahassee Democrat for five years. At the Democrat, he worked as a copy editor, general assignment and K-12 education reporter.