A local state representative says he wants answers to how candidates’ party affiliations were left off of Washington County digital ballots Monday, the first day of early voting for the November general elections. Rep. Justin Harris (R – West Fork) is afraid some voters’ voices may not be properly heard because of the electronic ballot glitch. Harris said he may file an official complaint if election officials do not remedy the issue. County election commissioners met Tuesday morning to address concerns over the ballot problem, after voters and officials noticed Monday morning electronic voting machines did not include party affiliations. The problem was noticed within the first few voters, and officials temporarily fixed the situation by placing paper ballots, which included parties, next to electronic voting machines for reference, said Jennifer Price, Washington County election coordinator. She said the problem was fixed in time for the second day of early voting Tuesday.
Harris said that solution may not be good enough. Any candidate involved in a race with a “razor thin margin” will have a legitimate claim to challenge the results because of the ballot glitch, he said.
Election officials should have suspended electronic voting and handed out paper ballots when they found out about the problem, Harris said.
Although Price said election officials have received no complaints from voters, Harris said it is unknown exactly how many voters cast their ballots at Washington County election sites before paper ballots were placed on voting machines. Even just several or dozens of votes could make a difference, Harris said.