The sun had set twice since Election Day and still Yellowstone County workers were counting votes Thursday afternoon on ballot machines that jammed after a couple of dozen ballots. With right around 70,000 voters turning out for the general election, it was the worst possible time for things to go haywire. Elections Administrator Bret Rutherford and his predecessor, Duane Winslow, said several things had tripped up their count. The biggest snag appears to be folded absentee ballots, of which Yellowstone County issued about 53,000. “It really was just the jamming that was the main issue,” Rutherford said.
The ballot-counting machines made by Elections Systems & Software, of Omaha, Neb., don’t perform well with folded ballots. This is the first election that folded ballots were fed into the ES&S machines — the county has three that cost $65,000 each —but it was a particularly bad experience.
Voters who registered through DMV encountered Election Day problems
When Katie Wyskiver went to vote Tuesday, her polling place in Lolo didn’t have a record of her registration, which she believed she’d completed through the Division of Motor Vehicles.
Similar problems arose with other voters who thought they’d registered through the same agency, election officials told her. So even though Wyskiver had received a document in the mail telling her to vote in Lolo, she drove back to Missoula to vote at her old polling place at Lowell School.
Full Article: Ballot counting in Yellowstone County pushes on.