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View Diary: AK-SEN: Absentee/Early Count Brings Begich INTO THE LEAD--UPDATED!! (267 comments)

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  •  Creepy that so many votes (9+ / 0-)

    don't REALLY get counted in most races.  It seems that most states only dip into the absentee and provisional votes if they absolutely must.  

    Doesn't seem right. Anywhere.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:23:54 PM PST

    •  No...They Do Get Counted... (25+ / 0-)

      It is just that they are counted SLOWLY.

      This is a dynamic that I suspect will change, sooner rather than later.

      Used to be, absentees and provisionals were counted at a very leisurely pace, since it was very unlikely that they would actually change the outcome of a race.

      When 95% of ballots were cast on election night, such a philosophy made sense.

      But literally ONE-THIRD of Alaska's vote was not counted on Election Night. Same for about 20% of California's ballots.

      There are still, at this moment, approximately 1.8 million California votes that have not been added to the total yet.

      "You share your young with the wolves of the nation...
      Theres nothing left til you pray for salvation"
      Black Rebel Motorcycle Club "American X"

      by Steve Singiser on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:26:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Do they? How do we KNOW? (3+ / 0-)

        I am unconvinced that all units of all states keep spending time and money on them after results are so precipitously announced the very next day.

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:27:52 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Absentees Need To Be Verified... (13+ / 0-)

          To prevent duplicate voting.

          That is why many Begich-friendly precincts aren't being counted today. Those local election officials have not finished verifying the ballots.

          When they do, they will be counted...possibly as soon as Friday.

          "You share your young with the wolves of the nation...
          Theres nothing left til you pray for salvation"
          Black Rebel Motorcycle Club "American X"

          by Steve Singiser on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:34:14 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  They are reported carefully where I live. (7+ / 0-)

          I have a lot of problems with the New York State elections system, but this is not one of them.

          "Animals are my friends. And I don't eat my friends." -- George Bernard Shaw

          by Hudson on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 03:45:49 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  NM starts the Absentee Ballot counting process (6+ / 0-)

            5 days early.  Early votes are counted when the polls open on Election day.  People who have requested absentee ballots can spoil them at the early vote locations, and vote early.  They can either return them to their own precinct, the Clerk's office, or two other Election-related sites on election day if they haven't sent them off in time to be received by the Clerk at 7pm on election night.  All this leads to the absentee and early votes being reported first.  It's a good system.  Only provisional ballots, in-lieu-of absentee ballots, and hand-counted absentee ballots (those which can't be read by the optical scanners) take days to count.

            •  Apparently AK doesn't have a system to prevent (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Swordsmith, mjd in florida, Lujane

              people requesting absentee ballots from also voting normally at the polls.  In NM, if you request an absentee ballot, a notation is printed on the signature line, saying something like **ABS BALLOT REQUESTED**.  The voter then uses a special kind of provisional ballot (an in-lieu-of ballot, or ILO) which is checked against the register of absentee ballots received.  If the absentee ballot was received on time, it counts and the provisional ballot is tossed.  If the absentee ballot was not received, then the ILO ballot is counted.  The system is designed to prevent double voting, a.k.a. voter fraud.  According to an Anchorage paper's online edition, 13 people were found to have voted twice in the primary, once by mail and once at the polls.  But what do you expect from a state with fewer residents than Albuquerque?

        •  well, I know most of the workers by name (0+ / 0-)

          I figure that the people who work in other counties tend to be similar

          county workers seem to flock together a lot

          so you think the election workers would be able to bullshit their fellow employees in say, the Sheriff's office ???

          how about the district Attorney, county council, or the Superior court ???

          county employees are really close, but not that close ...

      •  As a pollworker, I felt uncomfortable (8+ / 0-)

        replying to voters who wanted to know if their provisional votes would "count".  My answer was that IF they could be verified as registered in our county, that they WOULD be counted, but just not as SOON.  But I wasn't sure I really believed my own answer, nor was I sure that our overloaded and somewhat lackadaisical county clerks office would try all that hard to track down registrants who had cards to prove it, but didn't appear in our rollbook.

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Wed Nov 12, 2008 at 04:24:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  we have a little receipt with the envelope (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lgmcp

          in my county, we give the voter a tear-off receipt with a number printed on it corresponding to their provisional envelope

          the receipt has a phone number the voter can call after 30 days to find out if the ballot was accepted or rejected

          •  That seems good ... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Zapp Branigan

            I wonder if ours had it, and they just didn't train us on it?  It all seemed a bit amateurish and haphazard.  

            "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

            by lgmcp on Thu Nov 13, 2008 at 08:47:04 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  my county just thought of this (0+ / 0-)

              before this election, we had three sets of stickers with numbers, that we tried to put on the receipt and the ballot and the roster

              it was a pain in the ass

              then somebody thought of printing serial numbers on the envelopes and receipts

              made my job WAAAAAY easy

              and the ROV doesn't have to trace the provisional envelope thru the voter's name to report the outcome, making the process all that more anonymous

              we're lucky here. The guy who recently redesigned the precinct procedures in my county had worked in a precinct a few times prior to getting the jobso he knew where he was able to fix parts of the process

              a lot of short cuts we used to make the job easier suddenly became a part of the process

              I closed my precinct and turned my stuff in by 9:00

              and so far, I ain't been arrested, so I figure I musta got most of it right ...

              (wink)

    •  California law requires that the absentee (16+ / 0-)

      and provisional votes be counted, but only the absentee votes that are received in advance of Election Day can be counted that night because signatures have to be verified in a time-consuming process.

    •  wha do you think election wkers do the other 364 (0+ / 0-)

      what do you think election workers do on the other 364 days of the year ???

      for the first 30 days after the election, they're scrambling their asses off to count all the votes and check all the signatures

      crossing all the tees, and dotting all the eyes, if you follow my meaning

      (wink)

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