Florida Lt. Governor on impact of early voting [podcast]

Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera appeared yesterday on “Pensacola Speaks” to promote early voting. I asked him how early voting impacts an election.

“One, a vote that’s already cast is a vote that you have already cast,” he said. “That’s important. You never know what’s going to happen whether it’s the weather or, god forbid, something else that may make it more difficult for you to get to the polls on election day.”

He said the early voting statistics have a psychological aspect.

Lopez-Cantera said, “In 2012, Republicans in early voting and absentee ballots were outpacing Democrats by four percentage points at about this point. In 2014, in the reelection of Governor Scott versus Charlie Crist, we were outpacing Democrats in absentee ballots and early voting by several percentage points. Now, the spread is only about one and a half points.”

He said, “The Democrats are using that to go on radio, television, and the news, and take credit, and try and prove or show that they’re ‘winning.’ There’s a psychological aspect that could demoralize certain Republicans who may think, ‘No, this is not looking good.’ I would hope that that would motivate folks to go out and vote and to not leave it for tomorrow, but get it out of the way.”

Does the Lt. Governor have confidence in the state’s election process?

“I do. We have 67 elected or appointed election supervisors, and we have faith in what they’re doing and the job they’re doing,” he said. “We’d like to see 100% participation if possible.”

Lopez-Cantera thinks when Donald Trump talks about a “rigged” election, the candidate is referring to mainstream media.

“When talking about the rigging, it may had more to do with the stuff that you see in the media and what they choose to cover,” he said. “It’s not new territory. In ’08, in 2012, the mainstream media, they were all in very clearly for Obama. They had chosen their preferred candidate. They did their reporting as such. I’d like to think that’s what our nominee is talking about.”