CT Post: Recount shows widespread miscalculations

Last week the Connecticut Citizen Election Audit Coalition completed the recount of all ballots in Bridgeport in conjunction with the Connecticut Post Newspaper, with the cooperation of the City of Bridgeport and its election officials.

Here are links to the CTPost’s coverage today, followed by my summary opinion:

Lead story: Recount shows widespread miscalculations <read>

If you cast a photocopied ballot in last month’s gubernatorial election in Bridgeport, there’s a 1 in 4 chance your vote was miscounted.

How we counted: How the recount was conducted <read>

How election day went: Diaries tell of election chaos <read>

Results in more detail: Bridgeport election recount – The totals <read>

Columnist Opinion:  Time for Bridgeport’s Democratic registrar of voters to go <read>

An editorial: Voting process in need of reform <read>

Officials in Bridgeport and in Hartford need to take a look at the process. For one thing, the secretary of the state should have the authority to intervene in the case of, say, a municipality that has ordered an obviously inadequate number of ballots.

Wading through the bags of ballots and talking with the officials involved also hammered home the point that an election is a human endeavor, a relatively complex exercise run by people who are well-intentioned but just as susceptible to error, fatigue, frustration and anger as any of the rest of us.

In an ideal world, an election being the cornerstone of our way of doing things, it should be carried out with a nonpartisan professional at the helm and not left the sole responsibility of party loyalists like registrars of voters.

My Summary Opinion

I add my thanks to everyone involved:  The Connecticut Post for its leadership, initiative, and support of the recount; the City of Bridgeport, especially the election officials for their open and friendly cooperation; the other Coalition members: The Connecticut League of Women Voters, Connecticut Common Cause, and The Connecticut Citizens Action Group; and most of all the fifty-six (56) citizens committed to democracy who volunteered over 115 full days to the project, on short notice, many taking 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6 full days and more to contribute to this effort.

Given the circumstances I am not surprised that the Coalition found such differences. However, understanding how it happened does not justify complacency, it calls for appropriate action. Connecticut voters deserve a more accurate and resilient system. Democracy requires it.

Time for Bridgeport’s Democratic registrar of voters to go

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