Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Are the votes in?

It's now coming up on 20 hours since the polls closed and the winners declared... but I'm still left wondering, how close are we to a final count?

Are all of the precincts finally in?  As of this morning, 13 of the 141 precincts had not reported their results.  That could be 20,000 or more uncounted votes.

Then there are the 22,000 voters who took advantage of the opportunity to vote early.  That includes me.  Those votes are apparently not counted until after the election day total is finished.

Next, there are an unknown number of absentee ballots.  Including those votes in the final tally typically takes several days.

Finally, there are an unknown number of provisional ballots cast under the new same-day registration process.

The current result in the mayoral race is based on votes cast of 107,257 voters.  It would seem that there could be as many as 50,000 uncounted votes out there.  That's substantial. 

The Board of Elections and Ethics just announced that they will give a status report in ten minutes.  Perhaps they will provide some answers as to what is counted, what is not, and when the outstanding votes will be included. 

It may not change any of the outcomes, but it would be nice to know that the "every vote counts" drilled into us means something.   It's frustrating to see an election declared when your ballot is sitting in a box (or computer hard drive or memory cartridge) somewhere.

UPDATE: At 6:13pm, the Board of Elections added about 12,500 more votes to the count, widening Gray's margin to nearly 10%.

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