Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Blundering Buddy Johnson-Hillsborough Elections Chief--Failing Voters

Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning has smartly sounded the alarm over Hillsborough County's lack of preparation for next year's elections.Johnson should respond to Browning's legitimate concerns with action, not criticism.

Hillsborough County Elections Supervisor Buddy Johnson consistently has had trouble managing his operation. Now Hillsborough is one of 15 counties that must switch from touch screen voting machines to paper ballots. The state required the change to produce a paper trail for elections. Unlike election supervisors in Pinellas and other large counties, Johnson has yet to seek bids for the new equipment. The deadline to switch is July 1.

++ A few of Buddy's blunders-
Knee-deep in debt

Tongue-lashed by Brian Blair.

Conflicts of interest.

contracting out legal services instead of using the county attorney's office; making a childhood friend one of the highest-paid employees in his office; and giving a former employee a $24,000 gag deal.

used a politically connected law firm.

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