The Wayne County Board of Canvassers decided Saturday to hire a handwriting expert to review ballots from Detroit’s August primary election. The decision came as the board met at Cobo Center to consider more than 170 challenges filed so far in the latest recount of the primary. The top vote-getters in the mayor’s race, as certified by the state — former Detroit Medical Center CEO Mike Duggan and Wayne County Sheriff Benny Napoleon — will face each other in the November general election. Despite the decision to hire a handwriting expert, several challengers criticized the 19 samples that would be reviewed as too small to be representative.
Mayoral candidate Tom Barrow, who was one of the challengers, said that some of the write-in votes for Duggan appeared to be too similar.
Board Chair Carol Larkin, however, said the 19 ballots were just a sampling and could be increased if warranted. She also noted that she is not taking the investigation lightly.
Barrow, who came in fifth in the mayor’s race, and others insisted that fraud had been committed during the election and urged the board to take action.