TAMPA, Fla. - Florida election supervisors are expressing confidence that they will be able to pull off one of the most unusual elections in history.
"The biggest decision voters need to worry about is who they're going to vote for," said Brian Corley, the Pasco elections supervisor. "The rest is going to be taken care of."
Gov. Ron DeSantis allowed supervisors to start counting mail votes upon completion of quality control testing. That could mean they start counting 27 to 30 days ahead of Election Day, according to Hillsborough supervisor Craig Latimer, as opposed to the previous number of 22 days.
With possibly double the usual vote-by-mail load, that takes a lot off their plate the big night.
"Florida has the opportunity to be the shining star of the night," said Latimer. "All day Election Day, we will be working on whatever is coming in that day."
Also, those who vote early will have their results tabulated the Monday before Election Day.
While in-person voters may have longer lines because of COVID-19, Latimer is confident that by election night, most of the counting will be done.
When the polls close at 7 p.m. Eastern time, because mail ballots have to be in Florida, results of early and most vote-by-mail ballots will be made public.
"We are going to have unofficial election results on election night," said Latimer. "We always do."
Corley warns there will still be provisional or mail ballots that need to be counted or cured. In 2019, the legislature voted to allow curing until two days after an election, as opposed to the day before.
"Nothing is going to be official on election night," added Corley. "It's very important that voters understand that."