voting irregularities

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maryland

Maryland: About 1,650 ballots handled improperly in Baltimore election, state review finds | Baltimore Sun

About 1,650 ballots cast in Baltimore’s primary election were handled improperly, a state review has found — prompting some to question the validity of the election results. The State Board of Elections concluded that 1,188 provisional ballots were inappropriately scanned into the vote tally on Election Day — without judges verifying that the voters were eligible — and 465 other provisional ballots were not considered. The board’s findings were released Monday. “In many ways, this is worse than what anybody thought,” said the Rev. Cortly “C.D.” Witherspoon, an activist with Voters Organized for the Integrity of City Elections, or VOICE. “Although we knew there was a problem, we did not know it was to this magnitude. The citizens deserve better.”  Read More


Maryland: State review finds ‘significant’ irregularities in Baltimore election | Baltimore Sun

About 1,000 more votes were cast during Baltimore’s primary election than there were voters who checked in at the polls, an ongoing state review has found. State elections officials said Thursday that workers examining Baltimore’s election have uncovered “significant” problems. They have found more than 450 provisional ballots that were not considered by election judges. And nearly 800 provisional ballots — given to voters whose eligibility is in question — were improperly counted before eligibility was verified, officials said. Most of the problems were caused by untrained judges scanning ballots into the system that they shouldn’t have, said Linda H. Lamone, Maryland’s elections administrator. The state might not get to the bottom of every problem, she told the State Board of Elections. “There will be precincts that cannot be explained,” Lamone said. “We don’t know what happened. The numbers simply don’t match.” Read More

Maryland: Investigation into Baltimore elections irregularities nearing an end, state says | Baltimore Sun

State officials said Wednesday their review of Baltimore’s primary election was nearing an end, as they continued to investigate why votes outnumbered check-ins at the polls. Nikki Baines Charlson, deputy administrator at the State Board of Elections, said she expected workers to finish the review Thursday. Officials have focused on 60 precincts — about a fifth of the city’s 296 — where irregularities were “significantly” greater than in other Maryland jurisdictions. “There are probably only 20 precincts left that haven’t been reviewed at all,” Charlson said Wednesday. “We will have looked at 100 percent of the precincts by tomorrow.” Charlson said officials planned to present their preliminary findings at a meeting Thursday of the State Board of Elections. Read More

Maryland: Election snafus leave voters wondering if their votes were counted | Baltimore Sun

Mayfield resident John Raine, the first in line at his polling place on Election Day last month, can understand why the city’s election results are now in question. When Raine, 30, checked his ballot folder, he saw that poll workers had given him five blank ballots. And when he approached the scanner machine, no election judges were around. “I could have scanned in all five,” he said. “But I didn’t. I called the judge over.” Voters like Raine are feeling less confidence in the electoral system these days, as the state steps in to review irregularities at some polling places during the April 26 primary. With elections ever more partisan and many highly contested races ending in narrow vote margins, election watchers say people are more concerned than ever about ballots being tallied accurately. Read More

New York: Elections chief defends botched primary; Challenges loom | The Villager

Facing accusations of fraud and disenfranchisement, the New York City Board of Elections voted unanimously last week to certify the results of New York’s hotly contested April 19 presidential primary.  But the results are sure to leave many unsatisfied.  The board threw out nearly 91,000 of the 121,056 provisional ballots cast by voters who had been unable to vote on primary day either because their names were taken off the rolls or because their party affiliation had been dropped or switched to a different party without their knowing. So roughly three-quarters of the affidavits were deemed invalid and not counted, according to the tallies posted on the Board of Elections Web site last Friday. That’s in addition to all those who did not file affidavits because they were not aware they could or because their polling places ran out of them. Read More

New York: Board of Elections will suspend second clerk amid primary debacle | New York Daily News

A second Brooklyn Board of Elections official is expected to be suspended Thursday over New York’s primary day snafu that led many voters to be turned away at the polls. Betty Ann Canizio-Aqil, a BOE chief clerk in Brooklyn, is expected to be suspended after a vote at 3:30 pm by the board’s commissioners, sources told the Daily News. Read More

Serbia: Opposition rallies in Belgrade demanding election recount | Reuters

Hundreds of Serbian opposition supporters rallied in Belgrade on Saturday demanding a nationwide recount of last weekend’s election ballots, the resignation of the election commission or a re-run of the vote, claiming fraud and irregularities. Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic, who wants to take Serbia into the European Union, won Sunday’s election with 48.24 percent of the vote, roughly unchanged from 2014. But his Progressive Party’s majority in parliament was reduced as more parties attained the five percent vote threshold needed for seats. Left-wing and ultra-nationalist opposition parties teamed up on Saturday to protest in front of the election commission office, chanting “We want our votes” and “This is fraud”. Read More

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Peru: OAS: Peru’s Electoral System Needs Deep Reforms for Democracy | teleSUR

Peru’s election, wrought with allegations of fraud and the questionable application of campaign rules that shrouded the final weeks before voting day in uncertainty, has garnered a stern report from observers, who have called for deep reforms to the country’s electoral system, local media reported Tuesday. The Organization of American States mission found that Sunday’s general elections were threatened by political insecurity for voters brought on by the last-minute disqualifications and lasting uncertainty about who would be on the ballot up to 48 hours before polls open. The mission called for an overhaul of the disqualifications system, arguing that in its current form, electoral authorities are not able to guarantee the political rights of voters or candidates. Read More

Haiti: Presidential vote plagued by irregularities, report finds | Miami Herald

A commission charged with evaluating Haiti’s Oct. 25 presidential and legislative elections has found that egregious irregularities and a high presumption of fraud plagued the vote, while the electoral machine requires sweeping changes in order to hold a postponed runoff. According to official results, government-backed candidate Jovenel Moïse received 32.76 percent of the votes while Jude Célestin, the former head of the state construction agency, garnered 25.29 percent. Célestin, however, called the results a “ridiculous farce” and refused to campaign. Alleging vote-rigging and ballot-stuffing, Célestin and other opposition candidates called for an independent Haitian-led commission to probe the disputed balloting. The commission was created by President Michel Martelly on Dec. 22, five days before the postponed second round. On Sunday morning, members issued their findings, which critics say do not resolve the political crisis despite pointing out a series of major systemic problems besieging Haitian society. Read More

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Haiti: Many in Haiti Expect to Sit out Presidential Runoff Election | Associated Press

Protesters have streamed into the capital’s streets in recent weeks in sometimes violent rallies to back opposition demands for an independent recount of the first round of Haiti’s presidential vote and immediate changes to an electoral council. That fervor isn’t shared by many in this impoverished country, however, and analysts worry widespread voter apathy is threatening the latest attempt to shore up Haiti’s fragile democracy. The malaise during this year’s three-round electoral cycle is occurring while nearly all public offices are up for grabs. Food vendor Minouche Jean didn’t vote in the first round of the presidential election in late October and won’t cast a ballot in the runoff that is scheduled for Dec. 27. She has no interest in a process that seems to matter so little in her daily life. Read More