Eight exhibits attached to Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chad Smith’s appeal of the tribe’s recent election became available to the public Wednesday morning.
Smith filed the appeal Tuesday afternoon, asking the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court to either order a machine-conducted recount of the ballots cast in the June 26 election or, failing that, invalidate the certified recount results and call for a new election. Currently, challenger Bill John Baker is the chief-elect, having won a hand recount conducted Thursday afternoon and evening by a 266-vote margin.
In an affidavit, Val Giebel, a ballot-counting watcher representing the Smith campaign, said she observed disorganization among the counters that could have led to a shoddy result.
Counters were allegedly writing tallies on their hands and on napkins while waiting for official tally sheets to get to them, according to the affidavit.
Giebel also alleges that absentee ballots had been marked in black ink, blue ink and pencil, and in some cases the counters complained the pencil marks were too hard to read.