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A time line of Buddy Johnson's political troubles

Timeline | Buddy Johnson

August 2004: One of Johnson's workers leaves a voting machine in the "test" mode, resulting in the loss of 245 votes.

September 2004: The final vote isn't counted until almost dawn. Johnson blames a "software indexing system."

November 2004: Witnesses say Johnson tries to butt in line to vote at a crowded early voting site.

July 2006: A private group trying to put the question of a county mayor on the ballot blames Johnson after failing to secure enough petition signatures. A private audit says the effort failed because Johnson's office lost hundreds of petitions and rejected others that bore valid signatures. Johnson also failed to communicate with the group when he was busy buying restaurant stock on-line.

March 2007: A total of 2,535 voters in Tampa receive no written notice of a polling place relocation.

October 2007: For 18 days, a process server seeking to hand Johnson a subpoena in a federal voting rights case cannot find him. Workers say they don't know where he is or how to reach him. When Johnson finally sits for the deposition in the case, he is unable to answer dozens of questions about procedures in his office.

January 2008: Johnson's office mails out sample ballots with Rudy Giuliani's name spelled "Rudi."

August 2008: Despite having the lowest voter turnout in the state, Hillsborough becomes one of the last counties to complete its count. Johnson blames Premier Election Solutions, the company that sold his office the optical scan equipment.

November 2008: Hundreds of voters are not given the second page of the ballot. Voters wait for hours at an undermanned precinct. Hillsborough is the last county in Florida to report its results and is No. 1 in voter complaints.

December 2008: 440 ballots from the election are discovered uncounted.

December 2008: After boasting that he had shaved 10 percent off the election office budget, Johnson sends deputy Kathy Harris to ask the County Commission for $2.3 million to cover "unanticipated expenses" for the election. The office's entire budget for the year was $6.7 million. The commission rejects the request and orders an audit. Johnson withdraws his request.

January 2009: Premier says Johnson's office still owes $2.1 million.

January 2009: Johnson, records show, spent $1.3 million on advertising in newsletters, radio, TV and newspapers, and another $23,000 on 100,000 pens with his name on them. Johnson's office spent three times more on "voter education" than the offices in Orange, Pinellas, Sarasota and Duval counties.

Times Staff

A time line of Buddy Johnson's political troubles 05/09/09 [Last modified: Saturday, May 9, 2009 8:50pm]
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