Some election results from the Alaska primary could be delayed after more than 100,000 voters were given a month to clear up discrepancies with their addresses on voting records. Election officials have not given an exact count of how many did so, but those who didn’t may have to vote a questioned ballot in Tuesday’s primary election. That creates the potential for a delay in election results, especially in tight races, since election officials do not begin counting questioned ballots until a week after the election. “I think the problem is, we don’t know the breadth of the issue right now, so until we know the breadth of the issue, I don’t know that we know the questions to ask,” Stacey Stone, an attorney for the Alaska Republican Party, told The Associated Press. Josie Bahnke, the elections director, was too busy with the election to talk to a reporter, her spokeswoman said.
In 2016, Alaska voters approved a ballot initiative calling for the elections division to register qualified Alaskans to vote when they applied to receive an Alaska Permanent Fund dividend, an annual check from the state’s oil-wealth fund. The division also said the initiative allowed it to use information from those check applications to ensure voter registrations are current.
The division mailed required notices to those whose addresses on their dividend check application differed from their voter record address and to applicants not registered to vote, Bahnke said in a letter to Stone, provided to the AP by the elections office.