Rick Scott will recuse himself from certifying the recount results in the Florida Senate race


  • Photo by Jeremy Reper
On Wednesday, Gov. Rick Scott's lawyer told U.S. District Judge Mark Walker that the term-limited governor will recuse himself from the Elections Canvassing Commission next week, following days of speculation.

Had he not recused himself, Scott, a Republican, would have had the chance to certify (or not certify) the results of his U.S. Senate race against Democratic incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson, which advanced to an automatic machine recount after meeting the 0.5 percent or less margin late last week. Scott also recused himself from certifying the results of his re-election campaign in 2014, when he was running for his second term in the governor's mansion.

The Elections Canvassing Commission, which confirms the results of each federal, state and multi-county election, consists of Scott and two members of that Cabinet that he chooses. Following Scott's win in 2014, due to how the other members of the Cabinet were also on the ballot, Scott appointed then-state Senate President Don Gaetz, state Sen. Rob Bradley and state Sen. Kelli Stargell to fill in for them on the commission.

Though groups have called for a neutral third party to take Scott's place, the only other member of the Cabinet who could replace him is Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, a Republican who was also on the ballot this year, and who won re-election over Democrat Jeremy Ring.

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