dead people Jennifer Edwards.” Jennifer Edwards is the Collier County Supervisor of Elections, an elected County official.
Yes spooky. Any bureaucrat who says “I was just doing my job,” is at least dead in ideas. For what did the citizens of Collier County elect Edwards for, anyway – to rote follow the book? What about a little thinking? “Thinking did not,” said Yoda of Star Wars. What Edwards did do was immediately send a letter to the Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning to cover her a**, that is to say, pass the buck.
Here is how this particular bureaucratic cycle turned. The Governor signed the new election law and sent it down the pike to all the various Florida counties to carry out. Within hours (pretty fast) Edwards wrote to a different appointed state official to say she will not put the law into effect until it is precleared by the U.S. Department of Justice. She says no-no-no because the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA) (46 years ago) requires five counties in Florida to check with the Federal Government before implementing election law changes.
Rewinding to circa 1965 to read the Voting Rights Act, one finds that Edwards could have thought out at least two thoughts.
- Obviously, there are only five counties in Florida affected: Collier, Hardee, Hendry, Hillsborough, and Monroe. Since there are 67 counties in Florida, perhaps it’s time to change the law, at least for Florida in the United States. The intent of the law is well enforced in Collier County, and therefore, the law is out of date. Edwards works for Collier County and should do something about this. What is she waiting for? She had 11 years to do something. The State of Florida and most of the counties are doing a good job, and therefore the VRA Preclearance Clause needs to be readdressed through the proper legal channels.
- Section 5 VRA Preclearance Clause states that the U.S. Department of Justice is to preclear “any voting qualification or prerequisite to voting, or standard, practice, or procedure with respect to voting…” in any “covered jurisdiction.” Covered jurisdiction for Florida means the five counties previously mentioned. In Gov. Rick Scott’s newly signed election law there is no denial or abridgment to the right of any Floridian to vote on account of race or color. In fact, the new law has no changes in voting qualification whatsoever.
Edwards jumped to the conclusion that there were changes in qualification on race and color without reading the law. She also did not anticipate that the election law could change, and she was not prepared to change it appropriately and legally in authority of her elected status. In other words, she is not even “doing her job.”