PARKLAND, Fla. – Ronni Isenberg was in college when one of her former neighbors stormed into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last year, killing 17 people, including one of her friends.
When she saw the aftermath of the tragedy at Syracuse University in New York and felt too far away from home, Isenberg knew she had to join other Parkland, Florida. Her anger was put into political support for the tougher weapon laws.
Last March, a month after the shooting, Isenberg flew from college to Washington to attend the march for our lives demonstration on the mall, which was organized by Parkland students. She made sure she was registered in Florida and encouraged her friends in Syracuse to sign up as well.
However, Isenberg recently learned that her voice ̵
"We wanted to make a change and vote for the change," Isenberg said. "I should have had the right to vote and my vote should have been counted."
The issue with the election of Isenberg was discovered by Daniel A. Smith, chairman of the Department of Political Science at the University of Florida, who examined Florida's open analysis -source voting file. Smith, an election campaign veteran in Florida, said 15 percent of mail-in ballots submitted by Parkland residents between the ages of 18 and 21 were never counted in the midterm elections, far exceeding the nationwide average. Www.mjfriendship.de/de/index.php?op…80&Itemid=58 About 5.4 percent of the mail – in ballots had been rejected or not counted. English: www.mjfriendship.de/en/index.php?op…95&Itemid=55. The national average of declined or uncounted mail-in votes for all age groups was 1.2 percent.
"If you vote in Florida and are young in Florida, you have a good chance that your ballots will not be accepted," said Smith. "Imagine, you go to the ATM, and every ten times when you go, instead of spitting out your money, they take it or lose it."
A spokesman for the Broward County Supervisor of Elections said he could not comment on Smith's findings. "Except and until", the office reviewed its data and methodology.
However, the bureau found a nationwide refusal rate at the age of 18 to 21 years that was "half" of the ten percent that Smith discovered. Of all the mail-in voters cast in Broward County, 5,464 were not counted, regardless of age – a 2.8 percent rejection rate, the election office said.
More than half of these ballots (3,458) were not accepted because they had arrived after Election Day and could not be legally counted. Others were unsigned, contained a mismatched signature, were signed by someone other than the voter, or returned to the polling station as "undeliverable" according to the country records.
Under the law of Florida, electoral officials must compare the signature on a list postal vote for signature on the voter's registration form.
If the signatures do not match, the voter can file a sworn statement along with proof of identity to try to resolve the issue. Voting by mail, however, must be received by the election office by 17.00. on the day of elections.
In a September report written by Smith, the American Civil Liberties Union concluded that Florida's "voice-by-mail" system is disempowering younger voters and ethnic and ethnic minorities.
In the 2016 election, the report said that people under the age of 30 accounted for only 9 percent of all voters, but about 31 percent of all rejected votes. The black voters made up 9 percent of the voting participants, but 17 percent of the votes rejected, the report concluded.
In November, when the nail-biting election between Scott and Nelson came to a count-down, there was a flood of complaints against Florida voter laws.
A lawsuit found that Florida election officials had turned down more than 4,000 ballots for mismatched signatures. Under current law, these challenged signatures had to be corrected by 5pm. on election day, although the law of the state until 7 o'clock to reach for their mail-in ballot in local election offices. (There is one exception for foreign and military votes, which are accepted until 10 days after the election.)
A federal judge ruled that the state's signature-matching standards were unconstitutional. The judge gave voters in Florida a 10-day extension to correct their signatures. Last month, the US Court of Appeals for the 11th Circle upheld this lower court ruling.
Myrna Pérez, attorney for the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law School, said that more public education was needed to better inform voters about the mail-in-ballot deadlines, especially those for the first Choose time. But Pérez said she was not sure that significant changes were needed to the signing requirement of the state, and said such laws would help make the legislature impose even stricter conditions.
"We do not want people to ask for a strict voter ID instead of a signature," Pérez said.
In Parkland, Smith suggests that many students enroll in high school before their 18th birthday As they get older, their signatures continue to evolve.
"Many of these students go to college and develop a new identity, including more complex signatures," Smith said. "Their new signing might not look like it did in high school." Class. "
About 250 Parklanders aged 18 to 21 had registered for election between February 2018, when Stoneman Douglas High School was shot, and Election Day, with more than half of them voting an unusually strong turnout among young voters in an interim election, 
. Many of the young adults in Parkland, whose nominations were rejected, say that the electoral authorities of the state and municipalities are to blame.
Luciany Capra, a 19-year-old student at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, said she had applied for her absentee ballot at least a month before the election. It had not arrived weeks later, and for two consecutive days no one reported to the election office in Broward County, Capra said.
She said she finally got through the Friday before the election. After being put on hold for an hour, they said, "Oh, you should have gotten it." But I never got it, "Capra said.
The Electoral Office sent it again and she received it at the election day.
Capra filled out the ballot and voted mostly for Democratic candidates. She sent it back, though she doubted it would arrive on time to be counted.
Then, a few days after the election, Capra said someone would call her and tell her that her vote had been rejected because her signature was not consistent and that a judge had given her more time to re-sign her ballot ,
"I submitted an application to count them, and signed a whole series of papers, and then I never heard from anyone," said Capra. a second year student who voted for her first choice. "If there was a mistake, it was a mistake."
The Broward County Electoral Office said it had been concerned for years about how slowly the post office had delivered ballots and other correspondence to voters. He found that all letters from Broward County were first sent to a processing center in Miami-Dade County.
However, 19-year-old Reagan Edgren says that the problem of her choice is not the postal service. She said the Broward election commission was too overwhelmed to mistakenly consider all mail-in ballots.
Smith's papers examined by the Electoral Authority show that Edgren, a student at the American University in Washington, had requested . On October 27, the Electoral Authority was sent to her by e-mail and did not receive it until November 17 , almost two weeks after the election, back.
Edgren is sure she sent him off before Election Day.
"They kept telling us we could make a change by voting," Edgren said. "But if they do not allow our votes to be counted, they essentially say that we do not get a vote."