Federal election reform commission to hold hearing in Miami

06/12/2013 2:31 PM

06/12/2013 3:37 PM

The bipartisan election reform commission established by President Barack Obama will meet later this month in Miami — the focal point for the state’s most-recent election meltdown.

The Presidential Commission on Election Administration is scheduled to meet all day Friday June 28 at the University of Miami to take testimony and public comments from local, county and state election officials and citizens, according to a notice published Wednesday in the Federal Register.

"The [commission] was established to identify best practices and make recommendations to the President on the efficient administration of elections in order to ensure that all eligible voters have the opportunity to cast their ballots without undue delay," the notice said, "and to improve the experience of voters facing other obstacles in casting their ballots."

When he announced the appointment of 10 commission members last month, Obama said the nation is “betraying our ideals” when voters face so many obstacles to cast a ballot.

Miami is a fitting site to discuss election problems. Some voters last November waited between five and eight hours to cast ballots, due partly to an unusually long ballot, a shortened early voting period and ill-prepared precincts.

But problems extended throughout Miami-Dade and into other large urban counties throughout Florida. But problems extended throughout Miami-Dade and into other large urban counties throughout Florida. It took several days after the Nov. 6 election for Florida to count all its votes.

Obama’s margin of victory in Florida over Republican challenger Mitt Romney was less than 1 percent — about 74,000 votes.

The face of the voting troubles: Desiline Victor, a North Miami woman who waited hours to vote despite her age of 102. She was featured in Obama’s State of the Union Speech, though a bill to be named in her honor died in the Florida Legislature.

Those wishing to attend the meeting are encouraged to contact the commission to ensure the meeting is held in a place that can accommodate all attendees.

To learn more about the commission and its June 28 hearing, you can visit the commission website http://www.supportthevoter.gov/. Or you can contact Mr. Mark Nejbauer, Designated Federal Officer, Presidential Commission on Election Administration, mark.nejbauer@supportthevoter.gov.

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