With the move to recount Michigan’s presidential ballots still tangled up in the courts, we may never know for sure whether it might have changed the outcome of the election. But we did learn some outrageous things about the state’s electoral process. The key revelation is that the system in many places is rife with incompetence that results in the disenfranchisement of thousands of voters who cast ballots that don’t get counted. In Wayne County, for example, one-third of the ballots cast on Nov. 8 would not have been eligible for recount because of handling irregularities; in the city of Detroit, it was half the votes. Had the recount been allowed to proceed, it would have been useless without those ruined Detroit and Wayne County ballots, and others from Genesee County and elsewhere. In some cases, the seals on the secure containers that receive the ballots after they’re counted were broken, so the possibility of tampering can’t be discounted. Secretary of State Ruth Johnson had the seals redesigned to make them less susceptible to accidental breakage.
A ballot box from a Detroit precinct that was supposed to contain 306 ballots held only 50 when it was opened. Elections Director Daniel Baxter told the state the ballots got accidentally left in a tub when the rest of the voting forms were packaged and sent downtown on Election Night. In most of the precincts where votes couldn’t be recounted, the number of ballots in secured boxes didn’t match the number in the poll book of people who actually voted.
In other cases, ballots were found with notes written on them by precinct workers. Even in Oakland County, noted for its electoral efficiency, 26 of 520 precincts were not eligible for the recount because of irregularities.
Full Article: Editorial: Recount reveals voting outrages.