Florida Republican Senate candidate Rick Scott. Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Florida Governor Rick Scott (R) and the National Republican Senatorial Committee filed a lawsuit late Thursday against the Broward County Supervisor of Elections alleging that the office withheld information on the number of outstanding ballots and how many people voted in the state's closely-watched Senate race, which could be headed to a recount.

What's happening: Scott claimed victory in the race Tuesday night against incumbent Democratic Senator Bill Nelson. But since then, the vote gap between the candidates has been narrowing. According to local reports, early voting and vote-by-mail ballots are still being counted in Broward County, and ballots that were mailed in are being tallied in Palm Beach County, both of which are heavily Democratic.

The backdrop: Florida’s hotly contested gubernatorial race between Democrat Andrew Gillum and Republican Ron DeSantis is inching toward a mandated recount. DeSantis' lead has narrowed to a margin of 0.47%.

The details: "I will not sit idly by while unethical liberals try to steal this election," Scott told reporters at a press conference Thursday night. Scott called out Marc Elias, an attorney whom Nelson hired, and claimed that he's trying to "steal the election." They're "mysteriously finding more votes," Scott said.

  • The lawsuit demands an emergency court hearing on the matter.
  • The latest vote totals show Scott has a 0.18% margin over Nelson. Under state law, a recount is required when the winning margin is 0.5% or less.
  • In response to the suit, Nelson's campaign said in a statement: The goal here is to see that all the votes in Florida are counted and counted accurately. Rick Scott’s action appears to be politically motivated and borne out of desperation.”

President Trump tweeted about the race Thursday evening saying, "Law Enforcement is looking into another big corruption scandal having to do with Election Fraud in #Broward and Palm Beach. Florida voted for Rick Scott!"

Go deeper

Updated 12 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 1:30 p.m. ET: 20,412,501 — Total deaths: 744,649— Total recoveries: 12,629,465Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 1:30 p.m. ET: 5,163,509 — Total deaths: 164,994 — Total recoveries: 1,714,960 — Total tests: 63,252,257Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi on state of coronavirus stimulus talks: "It's a chasm"
  4. Business: U.S. already feeling effects of ending unemployment benefits.
  5. Public health: America is flying blind on its coronavirus response.
  6. Education: Gallup: America's confidence in public school system jumps to highest level since 2004.

Pelosi on state of coronavirus stimulus talks: "It's a chasm"

Democrats and the Trump administration remain "miles apart" on negotiations over a coronavirus stimulus deal, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said on Wednesday.

Driving the news, via Axios' Dion Rabouin: Congress' failure to renew enhanced unemployment measures for millions of Americans at the end of July is already affecting consumer spending patterns, holding down retail purchases and foot traffic, economists at Deutsche Bank say.

2 hours ago - World

U.S. threatens to veto UN peacekeeping in Lebanon over Hezbollah concerns

Peacekeepers with Lebanese troops in southern Lebanon. Photo: Jalaa Marey/AFP via Getty

The Trump administration is threatening to veto a resolution to extend the UN's long-standing peacekeeping mission in southern Lebanon if its mandate isn't changed, Israeli and U.S. officials tell me.

Why it matters: The U.S. is the main funder of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), which has an annual budget of $250 million. The veto threat is a tactical move, and part of a broader effort to put pressure on Iran and its proxy in Lebanon, Hezbollah.