It's now officially confirmed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis: Russia infiltrated the voter databases in two Florida counties ahead of the 2016 election. We knew previously from special counsel Robert Mueller's report that at least one county's database had been breached; now DeSantis confirms that it was two.
He can't divulge which counties, he says, because the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security made him agree in writing not to disclose the information after a briefing last week. DeSantis also swears that then-Gov. Rick Scott had absolutely no idea what was happening. "We're trying to figure out what the state knew at the time," DeSantis said. "Obviously, the previous administration and the head of [the Florida Department of Law Enforcement] did not have that information."
Fast forward to 2018, when Sen. Bill Nelson, the Democrat whom Scott defeated in that year’s election, warned about the hacking and was ridiculed for the assertion. Republican Sen. Marco Rubio also knew about it, and the two wrote to Florida officials to warn them.
So now it comes down to the timeline, and DeSantis's "what the state knew at the time," because it did know about the 2016 hacking before the 2018 election. Which makes this statement from DeSantis—the Florida secretary of state at the time—disingenuous, to say the least: "Hey, this shows up in the Mueller report, no one ever said anything to me. Granted, I took office in 2019 and this happened in 2016, so I get why the FBI wouldn't have rushed to tell me about something several years ago." He can't play dumb about the whole thing now, pretending that he just found out.
What did DeSantis and Scott know about Russia's successful hack into their state and when did they know it? And what did they do to protect their state's elections system in 2018?
Published with permission from Daily Kos