Missouri Sen.-elect Josh Hawley probed after complaint from liberal group

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, who defeated incumbent Claire McCaskill for Senate earlier this year, is under investigation after a liberal group accused him of misusing taxpayer-funded resources. The office of Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft confirmed the investigation to the American Democracy Legal Fund (ADLF), the group that filed the complaint, in a … Continue reading “Missouri Sen.-elect Josh Hawley probed after complaint from liberal group”

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, who defeated incumbent Claire McCaskill for Senate earlier this year, is under investigation after a liberal group accused him of misusing taxpayer-funded resources.

The office of Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft confirmed the investigation to the American Democracy Legal Fund (ADLF), the group that filed the complaint, in a letter provided to Fox News.

Both Hawley and Ashcroft are Republicans.

In its complaint, the ADLF alleged Hawley had political consultants “direct state, taxpayer-paid staff to undertake tasks that would raise Hawley’s profile” in his quest for the Senate seat.

The complaint came after an October report in The Kansas City Star newspaper which said out-of-state consultants gave Hawley’s attorney general staff members – through email, text messages and in person – tasks to shape his agenda in his office.

Khristine A. Heisinger, deputy general counsel for the secretary of state, confirmed in a letter to ADLF President Brad Woodhouse that “this office will commence an investigation into the alleged offense.” She asked the ADLF to turn over any evidence about the alleged offense.

LTR to Woodhouse.12.6.18 by Kaitlyn on Scribd

“Josh Hawley’s flagrant abuse of his taxpayer-funded office for his own political gain deserves immediate investigation,” Woodhouse said in a statement to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We’re heartened to see Secretary of State Ashcroft give this racket further scrutiny.”

HAWLEY DEFEATS MCCASKILL IN HARD-FOUGHT MISSOURI SENATE RACE

Mary Compton, a spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office, told Fox News the office is “delighted to cooperate” in the investigation to “put these ridiculous allegations to bed once and for all.”

“These allegations are totally meritless and nothing more than a partisan attempt to slander the work of the Attorney General’s Office,” she said. “As we have said before, no taxpayer resources were ever expended for campaign purposes. And no government employees ever participated in the campaign or political activities.”

Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft’s office has opened an investigation into fellow Republican Josh Hawley after he was accused of misusing public resources for his successful bid for Senate.  (Official photo)

Missouri law states: “No contribution or expenditure of public funds shall be made directly by any officer, employee or agent of any political subdivision to advocate, support or oppose any ballot measure or candidate for public office.”

REPUBLICAN SENATOR ASKS MCCASKILL CAMPAIGN TO REMOVE HIM FROM AD

After the accusations first surfaced, McCaskill – a former prosecutor who has held her Senate seat since 2007 – compared Hawley’s alleged actions to that of a previous Missouri attorney general who went to prison in 1993 after he used state resources for political reasons, according to the Post-Dispatch.

“It is against the law to use state resources for political gain,” McCaskill said. “You cannot use taxpayer-paid staff to assist in any political purpose. The last attorney general went to prison for utilizing his office and his state staff to promote him politically. Those are the facts.”

Kaitlyn Schallhorn is a Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter: @K_Schallhorn.

Democrat accused of repeated use of women’s restroom will resign in January

A Colorado Democrat whom female colleagues had accused earlier this year of frequenting a women’s restroom inside the Statehouse is resigning, a spokesman said Wednesday.

State Sen. Daniel Kagan’s departure, effective Jan. 11, will come as the Democrats retake the Colorado Senate majority following November's elections, the Denver Post reported.

MALE DEMOCRAT ACCUSED OF USING COLORADO SENATE’S WOMEN’S RESTROOM ‘MULTIPLE TIMES’

“It’s been a great honor to serve the people of Colorado for just short of a decade,” Kagan said in a statement. “An important obligation of leaders, I believe, is to be open to acknowledging that it’s time to pass the torch to new leadership and, for me, that time is now.”

“An important obligation of leaders, I believe, is to be open to acknowledging that it’s time to pass the torch to new leadership and, for me, that time is now.” 

— Colorado state Sen. Daniel Kagan

Kagan was instrumental in repealing a 19th-century law that criminalized adultery, a law he regarded as giving authorities the power to question people about their personal lives, “which is a gross invasion of privacy that’s fully within the rights of the police right now.”

But Republican state Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik said several women claimed to have seen Kagan using a women’s restroom multiple times since January 2017. She filed a workplace sexual harassment complaint against Kagan in March.

Kagan said he’d entered the women’s restroom just once by mistake because it was unlabeled. The debacle prompted the state Senate to post signs outside its restroom designating “men” and “women,” Denver’s KUSA-TV reported.

“I asked for a public apology to all involved, not a resignation,” Martinez Humenik said Wednesday. “We are still waiting on his apology.”

Colorado GOP spokesman concurred, saying Kagan should have apologized rather than “just resigning to avoid having to look at them.”

Colorado Public Radio reported earlier this year that Kagan was among a group of Democratic senators who have called for the ouster of Republican state Sen. Randy Baumgardner, amid accusations that he groped an aide in 2016.

“Many butt-slappers and thigh-strokers fancy that they are merely flirting and flattering,” Kagan said before the Senate.

Fox News’ Dom Calicchio contributed to this report.

Bradford Betz is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bradford_betz.

Sierah’s Law, targeting violent offenders, advances in Ohio on 85-0 House vote

Sierah's Law, a proposal to create Ohio's first geographically searchable registry of violent offenders, advanced Wednesday in an 85-0 House vote, reports said.

The bill honors Sierah Joughin, 20, who was abducted and murdered in the summer of 2016. Joughin was riding a bicycle home when she was kidnapped and killed by a man who was previously convicted of abduction, according to Toledo's WTOL-TV and the Toledo Blade.

The bill, Senate Bill 231, previously passed in the state Senate but now must return there to incorporate the House version before advancing to the desk of Gov. John Kasich for his signature or veto.

The violent offender database would help county law enforcement officers search addresses and other information on offenders convicted of certain violent crimes, the Blade reported. The offenders would have to register annually with the county sheriffs for at least 10 years.

Sierah's family believes that had a registry been in place when she was kidnapped, her killer James Worley, might have been questioned sooner, WTOL reported.

“During the trial, it was brought to the jury’s attention that this man spent time in prison many years before for an abduction in the same area of the county,” Rep. Theresa Gavarone, R-Bowling Green, told the Blade. “Sierah Joughin’s death ripped northwest Ohio as much as anything I’ve ever seen in the 30 years I’ve been there.”

After a two-year battle to pass the bill, the victim's mother, Sheila Vculik, told WTOL that her daughter got "the last word."

“Sierah Joughin’s life made the lives of other better. This law will continue to make the lives of other Ohioans better,” Gavarone said.

Derek Merrin of Monclova Township also spoke for the bill, WTOL reported.

“Although I never knew Sierah, I have come to admire her. … She was a treasure in our community and is still deeply missed," Merrin told the station. "Sierah's law is so important. Information is power and Ohioans have the right to know if they have violent offenders living in their midst.”

Amy Lieu is a news editor and reporter for Fox News.

Alaska Democrat plans to appeal after Republican wins state House recount by a single vote

An Alaska Democrat who lost a recount in a state House election by one vote said she will contest the results.

On Wednesday, Kathryn Dodge said she will file paperwork with the Alaska Supreme Court after disagreeing with the state Division of Elections. A recount held last Friday, showed Republican Bart LeBon edging Dodge by one vote.

LeBon picked up two extra votes and Dodge just one. The pair had been tied at 2,661 votes apiece.

“This race has gone back and forth, favoring me and my opponent at one time or another during a lengthy process,” Dodge said in a statement. “I believe that it is important to follow the process through so that absolutely no doubt remains about this incredibly close result.”

“After careful consideration & consultation with my legal team, I have decided to appeal the recount results based on decisions concerning several ballots made by the Div. of Elections with which we did not agree," Dodge added.

State Elections Director Josie Bahnke said the ballot picked up by Dodge during the recount was marked by a highlighter and not read by a machine.

LeBon received a vote that was initially rejected. Election officials later determined the voter who cast the ballot lived in the district. He picked up another when officials determined the voter was eligible to vote.

With LeBon, House Republicans will have 21 members, enough to control the 40-member chamber. The party will also control the Senate and governor’s office.

A ballot not counted was found on a precinct table on Election Day and later determined to have been a spoiled ballot where a voter made a mistake and a new ballot was requested and cast, Bahnke said.

Jay Parmley, executive director of the Alaska Democratic Party, said he feels good about Dodge's chances.

“It’s certainly not going to hurt anything," Parmley said. “It’s a lot easier to accept the outcome at that point, that every vote has been sort of debated and argued and thought about.”

If Dodge decides to appeal, the state Supreme Court recount the ballots. If the result is another tie, the race could be decided by coin toss.

Alaska state Sen. Bryce Edgmon won his 2006 race after a coin toss, saying it’s “not something I would wish for anybody to go through.”

If it comes to that, Dodge said she and LeBon should share the seat and “discuss every vote we take and come to an agreement” instead.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

DC, Maryland AGs subpoena Trump Org, Pentagon in lawsuit over DC hotel

The attorneys general for Maryland and the District of Columbia filed subpoenas Tuesday seeking records from the Trump Organization and a dozen other entities linked to President Trump as part of a lawsuit accusing him of profiting from his presidency in violation of the Constitution.

The subpoenas came one day after U.S. District Court Judge Peter J. Messitte approved a brisk schedule for discovery in the case alleging that foreign and domestic government spending at Trump's Washington, D.C. hotel amounts to gifts to the president in violation of the emoluments clause. The Article I clause, also known as the Title of Nobility Clause, prohibits federal officeholders from receiving "any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State" without the consent of Congress.

The subpoenas target 37 entities, including the Department of Defense, General Services Administration, Department of the Treasury, Department of Commerce and the Department of Agriculture, all of which have spent taxpayer dollars at the hotel or have information on Trump's finances relevant to the case. The other Trump entities targeted include those related to the D.C. hotel and its management. The attorneys general also subpoenaed 18 entities that compete with the Trump Hotel in an apparent effort to determine how their business has been affected since Trump's election and inauguration.

The subpoenas focus on answering three questions: which foreign or domestic governments are paying the Trump International Hotel in Washington, where that money is going and how Trump's hotel is affecting the hospitality industry in the District of Columbia and Maryland.

To help answer those questions, the subpoenas are asking for records of payments to Trump from state government and federal agencies that patronized the hotel. They're also seeking information proving that hotel revenues are going to the president through his affiliated entities, including The Donald J. Trump Revocable Trust. Most of the records are being requested back to Jan. 1, 2015.

The Justice Department declined to comment. Neither the Trump Organization nor the White House immediately responded to a request for comment Tuesday.

Trump's Justice Department lawyers have previously argued that earnings from such business activity as hotel stays don't qualify as emoluments. And in court papers last week challenging the judge's decision to move the case forward, Justice lawyers objected to any discovery on a sitting president in order to avoid a "constitutional confrontation." They also argued that any discovery would "be a distraction to the President's performance of his constitutional duties."

Trump's Justice Department lawyers filed a notice to the court Friday indicating it plans to challenge the Maryland judge's decision to allow the case to move forward in a Richmond, Va. court. The president's notice that he may seek a writ of mandamus — to have the appeal heard by a higher court — is considered an "extraordinary remedy" that's hard to prove and partly rests on showing Messitte's decisions to be clearly wrong.

Because Trump was also the first president in modern history to not release his tax returns, any responsive records would likely provide the first clear picture of the finances of Trump's business empire as well as his Washington, D.C., hotel.

There is no indication yet that Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and District of Columbia Attorney General Karl A. Racine, both Democrats, would push for the president's tax returns, at least in this initial round of legal discovery, given the sensitive nature of such a request and likely additional delays it would cause. But tax returns for some of Trump's business entities, including the state and federal tax returns for the Trump Organization, are also being requested.

There is a separate federal lawsuit involving the General Services Administration, which oversees the lease for the hotel with the Trump Organization. Democratic lawmakers last year sued demanding disclosures of records to determine how Trump was approved by the General Services Administration to maintain the lease of the Trump International Hotel in Washington after he became president.

The hotel is housed in the historic Old Post Office, which is owned by the federal government, and its lease has a clause barring any "elected official of the government of the United States" from deriving "any benefit." Trump and his daughter, Ivanka, a senior White House adviser, both retained their stakes in the property.

The plaintiffs' prior preservation subpoena filing requested documents that concern "marketing to foreign or domestic governments, including members of the diplomatic community" for 23 Trump-linked entities, be saved. Other noted categories for preservation include documents that would identify guests of the hotel and those who have rented event space, details on all finances and "operating leases, permits, licenses, tax payments or credits to or from foreign or domestic governments."

The state of Maine is also targeted for a subpoena, likely because its governor, Republican Paul LePage, stayed at Trump's hotel in Washington when he had official business to conduct, including discussions with the president. Representatives for LePage's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

On one of those trips last year, Trump and LePage appeared together at a news conference at which Trump signed an executive order to review orders of the prior administration that established national monuments within the National Park Service. President Barack Obama had established a park and national monument in Maine over LePage's objections in 2016.

If there are no delays, legal discovery would conclude in early August.

Fox News’ John Roberts The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Wisconsin protesters drown out Christmas tree-lighting ceremony challenging lame-duck session

Demonstrators booed outgoing Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Tuesday at a Christmas tree-lighting ceremony, drowning out a high school choir with their own songs in protest of a Republican effort to gut the powers of Walker's Democratic successor.

The governor, wearing a Santa tie, appeared unfazed as he flipped the switch while one protester shouted "Hey Walker! Go home!" He left without taking questions from reporters about the bills being considered by the rare lame-duck legislative session. Walker, who has signaled support for the measures, later tweeted that he "can handle the shouts," but he urged protesters to "leave the kids alone."

Democrats have derided the lame-duck lawmaking as a cynical attempt to preserve power after Walker's re-election loss last month.

"If he wanted to put a stop to this, he could," said Russ Hahn, a 53-year-old attorney holding a sign that said "GOP Grinch Steals Democracy."

The fact that Walker was making no attempt to halt the effort "clearly indicates he wants to be able to control things outside the governor's office for the next four or eight years," Hahn said.

Bob Kinosian, from Wauwatosa, Wis., holding up a sign during the state Christmas Tree lighting ceremony.

Later Tuesday, the public was ordered removed from Senate galleries after repeated warnings to be quiet. Spectators shouted "Shame!" and hurled complaints at senators, temporarily halting debate, as they walked out under police escort. Less than an hour later, Republicans said they would let people back in.

Walker burst onto the national political scene in 2011 with an aggressive anti-union agenda. Many of the same protesters who confronted him then returned to the Capitol on Tuesday — albeit in far fewer numbers. Protests reached 100,000 in 2011, but only a few dozen were on hand Tuesday.

Democrats vowed to do all they could to stop the measures, which would weaken both Democratic Gov.-elect Tony Evers and Attorney General-elect Josh Kaul.

Some hinted at filibusters or legal challenges and called the lame-duck session "illegitimate." Former Democratic attorney general and Gov. Jim Doyle said the moves were unconstitutional.

Never in Wisconsin history "has an extraordinary session been used to deny the will of the people and take away powers from the newly elected governor and newly elected attorney general," Democratic Rep. Chris Taylor said.

Meanwhile, Republican lawmakers met behind closed doors ahead of separate Assembly and Senate votes to send the bills to Walker.

A GOP-controlled committee approved the measures late Monday after a nine-hour public hearing where only one person testified in support of one provision. The panel rejected a proposal to move the 2020 presidential primary date from April to March amid nearly unanimous opposition from the state's local election clerks.

"The people aren't asking for this," Taylor said during the hearing. "You did not run on this. You didn't tell people you would do everything in your power to take away the power of a newly elected governor and attorney general. You rig the system when you win, and you rig the system when you lose."

Republican Rep. John Nygren, co-chairman of the committee, downplayed the proposals and said the goal was to establish balance in power between the Legislature and governor. Nygren said it was a positive step that would "bring us together to solve the problems of the state."

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, left, with the help of the Mary and Don Miller family from Plainfield, Wis., flipped the switch to light the state Christmas Tree in the Capitol Rotunda in Madison.

Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos told reporters Tuesday that his constituents want him to protect everything the GOP has accomplished over the last eight years under Walker. The legislation, he said, ensures that Evers will have to negotiate with lawmakers and cannot unilaterally erase Republican ideas.

"We do not believe any one individual should have the opportunity to come in and with a stroke of the pen … eliminate laws passed by our Legislature," Vos said, citing rules enacting voter photo ID, a key GOP initiative during Walker's two terms.

The protests this year paled in comparison to 2011, when tens of thousands of people descended on the Capitol to oppose Walker's anti-union agenda for weeks. Senate Democrats fled to Illinois, and Assembly Democrats filibustered for 60 straight hours in an unsuccessful attempt to stop Walker's changes.

Republicans were poised Tuesday to complete their work much more quickly, even as Democratic Minority Leader Gordon Hintz refused to agree on time limits for debate. Assembly Republicans said they would vote in their chamber by midnight.

Evers called the unusual lame-duck session "rancor and politics as usual." The last lame-duck session in Wisconsin was in 2010, when Democrats tried unsuccessfully to enact labor agreements.

The sweeping measures to bolster Republican legislative power come after North Carolina took similar steps two years ago. Michigan Republicans are also discussing taking action before a Democratic governor takes over there.

The proposals in Wisconsin would weaken the governor's ability to put in place rules that enact laws and shield the state jobs agency from his control. Republicans also want to limit early voting to no more than two weeks before an election.

Other measures would weaken the attorney general's office by allowing Republican legislative leaders to intervene in cases and hire their own attorneys. A legislative committee, rather than the attorney general, would have to sign off on withdrawing from federal lawsuits.

That would stop Evers and Kaul from fulfilling their campaign promises to withdraw Wisconsin from a multi-state lawsuit seeking repeal of the Affordable Care Act. They made opposition to that lawsuit a central part of both of their campaigns.

If many of the changes are challenged in court, opponents have said, the process could create even more gridlock in state government next year.

Arkansas’ capital city elects black mayor for first time

A banking executive and former highway commissioner won Tuesday's runoff for Little Rock mayor, becoming the first African-American elected to lead Arkansas' capital six decades after it was the center of a school desegregation crisis.

Frank Scott, 35, defeated Baker Kurrus in the runoff election for the nonpartisan, open seat. He'll succeed outgoing Mayor Mark Stodola, who announced earlier this year he wouldn't seek re-election.

Scott served as an adviser to former Gov. Mike Beebe and on the state Highway Commission, and he assembled a coalition that crossed racial and political lines. His supporters included Democratic state legislators from the area and prominent Republicans such as Will Rockefeller, grandson of Arkansas' first Republican governor since Reconstruction. He also was endorsed by New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, a Democrat who's considering running for president in 2020.

Scott had said he wasn't running to be Little Rock's first elected black mayor, but had sought to bridge some of the city's biggest divides: race, income and geography.

"If you believe it's time to unify this city, let's do it," Scott told supporters Tuesday night.

Little Rock has had two black mayors, but they were elected city directors chosen for the job by fellow board members and not by voters. Some voters Tuesday said they hoped electing Scott would send a message about Little Rock.

"I just thought maybe it would help race relations in our town, which is not very good right now," said Mary Leckie, a 73-year-old white retiree who voted for Scott.

Scott's election comes as race remains a dividing line in Little Rock, long after nine black students were escorted past an angry white mob into Little Rock Central High School in 1957. The city's police department has faced questions about its tactics, including its use of "no-knock" warrants. The state took over the Little Rock School District three years ago, and community leaders have compared the takeover to Gov. Orval Faubus' efforts to block integration.

Kurrus, a 64-year-old attorney and businessman, had been appointed superintendent of the district after the takeover. His contract wasn't renewed after he opposed the expansion of charter schools in the district, a move that rallied Democratic lawmakers and community leaders to his defense. Kurrus, who is white, had also called unifying the city one of his goals in the campaign.

"Let's don't give in to the things that divide us. Let's get together, work hard and make this a better place," Kurrus told supporters after conceding the race.

Scott's election makes him the highest-profile black official in a state that hasn't elected an African-American to Congress or statewide office since Reconstruction. Blacks make up about 42 percent of the city's population, compared to nearly 16 percent statewide.

Scott and Kurrus advanced to a runoff last month after Scott won a plurality of votes in a five-person race but a few percentage points shy of the 40 percent needed to win outright. Both Scott and Kurrus ran on a promise of change. Stodola, the outgoing mayor, was first elected mayor in 2006.

"It's not a black or white thing with me," said Lula Binns, a 75-year-old black retiree who voted for Scott. "It's just time for some younger blood."

Scott's election comes after a year where African-Americans have made gains elsewhere in Arkansas. Pulaski County, where Little Rock is located, this year elected its first black sheriff and clerk. Several other Arkansas cities have also elected their first black mayors this year.

Control of Alaska House could come down to coin toss

Control of the Alaska state House has come down to just one race – and it could be decided by a coin toss.

Following a recount, Republican Bart LeBon edged out Democrat Kathryn Dodge by just one vote. Previously, the pair was tied with 2,661 votes apiece.

Dodge has until Wednesday to appeal the recount, the Juneau Empire reported. She said she will “think on things” with her team.

“People kept calling it close,” Dodge previously said of the race. “I just didn't know it was going to be squeaky.”

LeBon wasn’t confident his victory was secured.

“I don’t think this is over. Do you? I’m pretty sure this has got another layer to it,” LeBon told the Juneau Empire. “I would be thrilled if it was over, but is this over? I just don’t think so.”

Should LeBon’s victory be certified, Republicans would narrowly control the House, as well as the Senate and governor’s office in Alaska.

But if Dodge does appeal, it would be up to the state’s Supreme Court to recount the ballots one-by-one. And if that recount resulted in yet another tie, the race could be decided by just a coin toss.

According to Alaska Public Media, state law says a tie would be broken “by lot.” And it’s happened before.

POSSIBLE VOTER FRAUD PROBED IN TIGHT NORTH CAROLINA HOUSE RACE

Democratic state Rep. Bryce Edgmon, the current House Speaker, won his race in 2006 after a coin toss. He said it’s “not something I would wish for anybody to go through.”

“Then-Rep. Moses actually won the right to call. And he called heads, and the coin came up tails,” Edgmon recalled to Alaska Public Media. “And in the split-second it took me to realize that I had actually won, my brother was up on the stage and a crowd of at least 300 or 400 people – all the media it seemed in Alaska – just, it was massive pandemonium. And I don’t think I remember too much after that.”

A Dodge victory in Alaska would leave the House split.

Dodge called the possibility of a coin toss “absurd” and suggested she and LeBon share the seat and “discuss every vote we take and come to an agreement” instead.

“I’ve come too far to have a coin toss settle this,” LeBon said.

Fox News’ Lukas Mikelionis and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Kaitlyn Schallhorn is a Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter: @K_Schallhorn.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott suspends Brenda Snipes from role as supervisor of elections

Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Friday suspended Brenda Snipes from her duties as the supervisor of elections in Broward County, and chose her temporary successor following the contentious recount in the state’s governor and U.S. Senate races during the midterm elections earlier this month.

Scott, who is headed to the Senate after defeating Democratic incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson, faulted Snipes for “misfeasance, incompetence and neglect of duty” in a news release announcing his decision made via executive order.

DEPARTING BROWARD ELECTION OFFICIAL BRENDA SNIPES STANDS TO RECEIVE $130G IN PENSIONS: REPORTS

The announcement comes after Snipes, who faced heat regarding her handling of votes during this year’s elections, reportedly submitted her resignation earlier this month to the governor, which was to go into effect in January.

Citing numerous media reports, the governor accused Broward election officials of committing “multiple violations of Florida law” during the midterm elections, the news release said.

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Scott selected Peter Antonacci to fill her position for what’s left of her term, until a new supervisor of elections can be voted on in the November 2020 elections, the news release said.

BRENDA SNIPES, EMBATTLED BROWARD COUNTY ELECTION OFFICIAL, TO RESIGN, REPORT SAYS

“Every eligible voter in Florida deserves their vote to be counted and should have confidence in Florida’s elections process,” Scott said. “After a series of inexcusable actions, it’s clear that there needs to be an immediate change in Broward County and taxpayers should no longer be burdened by paying a salary for a Supervisor of Elections who has already announced resignation.”

“I know that Pete will be solely focused on running free and fair elections, will not be running for election and will bring order and integrity back to this office,” he continued.

Snipes was appointed as the top elections official in Broward County in 2003 by then-Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a Republican. Snipes, a Democrat, has been elected to the role four times since.

Fox News’ Heather Lacy, Nicole Darrah and Barnini Chakraborty contributed to this report.

Alaska Republican wins House race by 1 vote after recount — but expects Democrat to challenge results

Every vote counts, they say — and that was never more true than on Friday in Alaska, where a Republican won a U.S. House race by a single vote following a recount.

On a day that Alaskans were primarily focused on a frightening earthquake that caused considerable damage, Republican Bart LeBon, a retired banker, defeated Democrat Kathryn Dodge by a single vote after both were previously tied with 2,661 votes each.

Following the recount, LeBon gained two extra votes, while Dodge got one additional vote, making LeBon the victor.

Kathryn Dodge, a Democrat, was tied with Republican Bart LeBon in an election for a U.S. House seat in Alaska. (Sam Harrel/Fairbanks Daily News-Miner via AP, File)

The election had its share of controversy. Before the recount, a mystery ballot was found weeks ago on the table in a voting precinct, potentially determining the fate of the election. In the end, it wasn’t counted because it turned out to be a spoiled ballot by a voter who made a mistake on it.

If LeBon’s victory is certified, Alaska will become a single-party state with the GOP holding the House, Senate and governor’s office.

Alaska House District 1 candidate Republican Bart LeBon points to a vote tally board with his campaign manager Brittany Hartmann during a election recount at the Department of Elections’ Juneau office on Friday, Nov. 30, 2018.  (Michael Penn/Juneau Empire via AP)

The Democrat still has five days to appeal the election outcome to the state Supreme Court. It remains unclear if her campaign is seriously considering the challenge.

“People kept calling it close,” Dodge once said of the race. “I just didn’t know it was going to be squeaky.”

But the Republican believes the election and the ballot counting that lasted for three weeks is far from over, saying he expected a legal challenge from whoever loses the recount.

“I’m pretty sure this has got another layer to it,” he said. “I would be thrilled if it was over, but is this over? I just don’t think so.”

“I’m pretty sure this has got another layer to it. I would be thrilled if it was over, but is this over? I just don’t think so.”

— Republican Bart LeBon

If the Democrat decides to pursue a legal action and the new recounts puts the two candidates at a tie, the winner would be decided by a coin toss.

The current state House speaker, Democrat Bryce Edgmon, won his 2006 primary election after a coin toss.

He said the practice of deciding the winner through a coin toss is “not something I would wish for anybody to go through.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Lukas Mikelionis is a reporter for FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @LukasMikelionis.