A Secretary of State analysis said about 10.4 percent of absentee ballots that were definitively accepted or rejected in Hattiesburg’s special mayoral election in September were incorrectly counted. According to a “Report of Absentee Voting” released Friday morning by the Secretary of State’s Office, a review of 1,044 of the 1,048 absentee ballots cast showed about 8.5 percent of those marked “accepted” should have been rejected, while about 31.9 percent of those marked “rejected” should have been accepted.
“Poll workers provide a valuable service to the state in assisting with elections,” Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann said. “However, these municipal poll workers ordinarily may only conduct one election every four years. “Poll workers are trained by election commissioners and this report shows what I have long advocated — more rigorous training for our poll workers.”
The report breaks down the absentee ballots cast and distributed throughout the city’s 14 precincts. The analysis was done to determine whether the ballots were properly accepted or rejected and whether they were accepted or rejected for the appropriate, applicable statutory reasons.