Politics: Missing ballots, like those in Ohio special election, often happen – and are just as often found - - PressFrom - US
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Politics Missing ballots, like those in Ohio special election, often happen – and are just as often found

20:56  09 august  2018
20:56  09 august  2018 Source:   usatoday.com

Trump to visit Ohio to campaign in special House election

  Trump to visit Ohio to campaign in special House election President Trump is due to visit Ohio and campaign for Republican House candidate Troy Balderson, who is seeking to keep what’s been a reliably Republican House seat in GOP hands. Trump is planning to stop by the state's 12th district in the Columbus suburbs on Saturday, The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported late on Tuesday, citing Republican sources.Polls show a tightening race between Balderson and Democrat Danny O'Connor in the Aug. 7 special election for retiring Rep. Pat Tiberi's (R-Ohio) seat, which has been held by Republicans since 1980. Trump carried the district by 11 points in 2016.

And those ballots are just as often discovered via audits or recounts, analysts said. While the post- election discovery of ballots isn't uncommon, it's hard to say how often this kind of thing happens . Local officials often don't find or don't report missing ballots because most races are won

Ohio officials have discovered 588 uncounted votes in this week’s special election for the 12th The campaign is waiting for 1,722 provisional ballots and 1,750 absentee ballots to be tallied, a spokesperson told HuffPost on Tuesday night. Whatever happens in this special election , the two

WASHINGTON – The "missing ballots" in Ohio's special election have caused a stir – but analysts said they really aren't a mystery and often pop up in elections across the country.

Under the rush of election nights, voting precinct officials nationwide often misplace ballots or send them to the wrong office. And those ballots are just as often discovered via audits or recounts, analysts said.

"It's not unusual," said Fred Wertheimer, founder and president of Democracy 21, a watchdog organization based in Washington, D.C. "It's one of the reasons people do recounts in close races."

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The final special election of the year is in Ohio 's 12th Congressional District between Republican State law bars boards of elections from counting those ballots until the 11th day after an election . Since last year, Republican groups have spent more than million on TV ads to defend just a

Find out when and where to vote and what to bring with you on Election Day. Learn about accessibility rules for voters with disabilities. Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site.

Post-election audits also yield uncounted votes, as happened this week in the special election for Ohio's 12th congressional district.

Officials in Franklin County said Wednesday they had found 588 previously uncounted votes in a Columbus suburb.

And it happened because of human error, insists Franklin County Board of Elections spokesman Aaron Sellers. 

Voters cast their ballots among an array of electronic voting machines in a polling station at the Noor Islamic Cultural Center, Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2018, in Dublin, Ohio. © AP Voters cast their ballots among an array of electronic voting machines in a polling station at the Noor Islamic Cultural Center, Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2018, in Dublin, Ohio. When election officials brought two master personal electronic ballots – or PEBs, small devices inserted into voting machines – back to the Franklin County Board of Elections from a Worthington polling location, one was uploaded into the final, unofficial total of a super-tight congressional race.

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After spending millions of dollars in a special election in Ohio , Republicans pushed the boulder up the hill just The Cook Political Report, based on its own partisan ranking formula, finds that there are 72 GOP-held Because of those remaining ballots , The Associated Press has not called the race yet.

The other was not. 

The next day, as bipartisan members of the board of elections were reviewing the race, they realized the PEB's results were missing. 

That PEB and its 588 votes were found. The breakdown was 198 votes for Republican Troy Balderson, 388 votes for Democrat Danny O'Connor and two for Green Party candidate Joe Manchik.

The mistake is embarrassing for Franklin County election officials, but they caught it quickly and the PEB was always in a secure location. Those 588 votes will be included – along with additional absentee and provisional ballots across the district – in the final tally, which must be tabulated by Aug. 24.

"We have a procedure in place and it got missed," Sellers said. "We’re human."

More: Ohio race just got closer after county finds hundreds of uncounted votes

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While the post-election discovery of ballots isn't uncommon, it's hard to say how often this kind of thing happens.

Local officials often don't find or don't report missing ballots because most races are won by big margins.

"Most of the time, it just goes unreported because it doesn't affect the result," said Daniel P. Tokaji, a law professor at The Ohio State University who specializes in election law.

That may not be the case in Ohio.

While Balderson and Trump have declared a Republican victory, O'Connor said he will not concede until every vote is counted.

Still outstanding: 3,435 provisional ballots and 5,048 absentee ballots that are expected to be counted by Aug. 24.

Balderson's slim margin over O'Connor could also trigger a recount, which in turn could yield more missing or uncounted ballots. That happened in the Florida recount following the 2000 presidential election between George W. Bush and Al Gore, until the Supreme Court halted the recount.

There are periodic news reports of found ballots. In November of last year, officials in Pierce County, Washington, discovered some 150 uncounted ballots from a primary election the previous August. They were found in a storage bin.

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Just as you want the brakes in your car to keep working even if the car’s computer goes haywire Examining the physical evidence in these states — even if it finds nothing amiss — will help allay Recounting the ballots now can only lead to strengthened electoral integrity, but the window for

A special election for the United States Senate in Alabama took place on December 12, 2017, to fill a vacancy in the U.S. Senate through the end of the term ending on January 3, 2021

Also last year, a school board race in Wayne County, Michigan, may well have turned out differently because officials neglected to count ballots in a rush to certify the election.

In 2015, an organization called the Arizona Advocacy Network issued a report finding that more 100,000 votes had not been counted throughout the past ten years.

On occasion, post-election discovery of ballots are accompanied by allegations of chicanery. In one of the most famous examples, future president Lyndon Johnson won a U.S. Senate seat in 1948 after officials in South Texas dug up a box of uncounted ballots. The mystery of "Box 13" remains part of political lore.

More often than not, however, ballots are lost through human error that is often discovered.

"Every time people do recounts," Wertheimer said, "the numbers change."

Jessie Balmert of the Cincinnati Enquirer reported from Columbus, Ohio.

Kansas county accepts nearly 1,500 new ballots, including from unaffiliated voters .
Johnson County will accept nearly 1,500 provisional ballots either in full or in part, including dozens cast by unaffiliated voters who were incorrectly told by poll workers to cast provisional ballots. The ballots could tip the balance in the GOP primary for governor. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach and Gov. Jeff Colyer were separated by a mere 110 votes as of early Monday.

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