NewsCovering Florida


Gov. Ron DeSantis signs elections bill in West Palm Beach

Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks during news conference in Fort Lauderdale, Feb. 13, 2019
Posted at 9:37 AM, May 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-06 09:37:44-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis has signed Florida's elections reform bill into law.

DeSantis signed SB90, which includes restrictions on voting by mail and ballot drop boxes.

The bill-signing event, which was closed to local media and took place live on Fox News, was held at the Hilton by Palm Beach International Airport.

After the bill-signing, DeSantis held up a poster touting "integrity & transparency" in Florida's voting laws.

"Me signing this bill here says, 'Florida, your vote counts. Your vote is going to be cast with integrity and transparency,'" DeSantis said during his appearance on "Fox & Friends."

U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, who recently announced his own candidacy for the governor's mansion, called out DeSantis for barring media from the signing.

While an earlier proposal of the elections bill would have banned the use of ballot drop boxes outright, the new legislation would allow their use as long as election officials follow new constraints — limits on who could drop off voters' ballots at drop boxes, a ban on moving drop boxes within 30 days of elections, restrictions on where drop boxes could be placed and a requirement that they would all have to be monitored by elections officials whenever they're open.

The bill would also require voters to request to vote by mail more regularly, prohibit election officials from using private money to help pay for election administration, restrict third-party voter registration organizations, add new powers for partisan election observers and give DeSantis the leeway to appoint replacements to fill certain local political positions vacated by people running for higher office.