Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Close Recount In Washington Swinging Democratic

AP Report - San Diego: King County Elections Director Dean Logan said an error had "prevented valid ballots from being counted" in the heavily Democratic county that includes Seattle. Gregoire won about 58 percent of the vote there.

Logan said workers did not count 561 absentee ballots because the signatures on them did not match computerized voter registration records. But he discovered Sunday that the signatures simply were not on file in the county's computer system.

Meanwhile, in response to a state Democratic Party lawsuit, the state Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether county officials will have to reconsider all of Washington's previously rejected ballots, including those thrown out because of voter errors such as failing to sign the ballot or missing a deadline to verify a signature.
The high court heard arguments Monday in Olympia and a decision is expected in the next few days.
"Washington will show the nation it is committed to counting every vote," David Burman, attorney for the Democrats, told the court. Burman estimated about 3,000 ballots were wrongly rejected and should be included in the hand recount. Two-thirds are in King County.

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