TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/NSF) – After a fierce election cycle that resulted in three statewide recounts, the Florida Elections Canvassing Commission on Tuesday certified the results of the Nov. 6 elections.
The commission, made up of Attorney General Pam Bondi, Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam and state Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, certified the results without discussion.
Typically, Gov. Rick Scott serves on the commission but recused himself because he ran for U.S. Senate this year. Also recused was state Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, who was on the Nov. 6 ballot. Bradley was appointed to fill the third slot on the commission.
The certification came two days after the end of manual recounts in Scott’s victory over Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson and Democrat Nikki Fried’s victory over Republican Matt Caldwell in the race to replace the term-limited Putnam as agriculture commissioner.
Last week, Republican Ron DeSantis prevailed over Democrat Andrew Gillum in the gubernatorial race, which went to a machine recount.
Patronis defeated Democrat Jeremy Ring on Nov. 6 to remain as state CFO, while Republican Ashley Moody topped Democrat Sean Shaw to succeed the term-limited Bondi as attorney general.
The Florida recounts were reminiscent of the 2000 presidential election when Florida took more than five weeks to declare George W. Bush the victor over Vice President Al Gore by 537 votes. Florida became the laughing stock of the world during the chaotic recount that decided the presidency.
Florida again was under scrutiny, especially as elections officials in Palm Beach and Broward counties struggled to count the vote. Scott and President Donald Trump suggested there was fraud in the largely Democratic counties, and several lawsuits were filed during the process.
Lawmakers have said they will look at election laws during the 2019 legislative session to avoid future problems.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press and News Service of Florida contributed to this report.)