Friday, December 9th, 2016

Racine voters may have cast thousands of questionable ballots as the poll lists went unsigned

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The MacIver Institute is reporting breaking news out of Racine where it was discovered that thousands of questionable ballots were cast by same-day registrants without the voters signing the registration book.

Thousands of voters who registered at the polls on recall election day in the City of Racine may not have signed the supplemental poll list as required by law, the MacIver News Service has learned.

Individuals who register as new voters or change their voter registration on Election Day do not appear on the pre-printed voter rolls maintained by election workers. Those same-day registrants are added to a supplemental poll list, maintained at each polling location across Wisconsin. A space is provided on the Supplemental Poll List for new registrants to sign by their hand-written entry, and by law they are required to do so.

‘They are required to sign the poll list, just like everyone else,” said Michael Haas, Staff Counsel with the GAB told MacIver News Monday morning.

Update! The MacIver Institute is reporting that though the voters should not have been issued ballots, failing to sign the registration book will not invalidate their votes.

A Wisconsin Government Accountability Board official admits that poll workers in Racine did not follow the law when they allowed voters who registered on election day to obtain and cast ballots without signing the supplemental poll list.

“What is supposed to happen is that, they’re not supposed to get a ballot,” Michael Haas, Staff Counsel with the GAB said Monday afternoon. “The election official should not have given the person a ballot”

That statement reinforced the one Haas gave the MacIver News Service earlier in the day when we reported on the errors.

However, that same official now asserts that the discovery that thousands of individuals may have been mistakenly given ballots in the June 5th recall election should not disqualify their votes.

“If the election official, made an error and gave them a ballot, you don’t disenfranchise the voter,” Haas said. “The intent of their ballot can still be ascertained.”

The discovery adds even more controversy to an already contentious recount of the 21 Senate District recall election.

“We consider that to be an administrative error and the voter is not supposed to be penalized for an election official making a mistake,” said Haas. “The statute says, if you can ascertain the electors intent, failure to comply with the other provisions of the statutes don’t invalidate the ballot.”

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