One Vote, Or Three Votes They Are All Important

Two recent  interesting stories in the Courant that relate to past posts, both point to the value of individual votes.

Case 1: One Vote “Creates” A Difference

In the first case we recall the single vote victory in Haddam that was quite controversial because of an apparent violation of the chain-of-custody:  Chain of Custody Education In Haddam:

The unofficial vote count after the Nov. 3 election showed Republican Chester Harris beating Democratic incumbent Sabrina Houlton by one vote. Because of the slim margin, the town held a recount Nov. 10, which showed the same result…

The next day, DeBold told Democratic Registrar Pat Hess what she had found. Hess authorized DeBold and Town Clerk Ann Huffstetler, also a Democrat, to open the sealed envelopes containing the ballots to review the tally sheets and to amend the recount.

Hess said Tuesday that she knew representatives from both parties needed to be present during all vote-counting procedures, but the GOP registrar could not attend that morning and they wanted to get the new tallies quickly to file the proper paperwork with the secretary of the state’s office. She said there was no intentional wrongdoing.

The additional vote for Houlton meant the race was a tie. State law mandates that the town must hold a runoff election between tied candidates. The election will be Tuesday.

Chester Harris won the runoff.  One more vote for Sabrina Houlton would have made quite a difference.  Harris has quite different views which he is bringing to the Board of Education.  No matter your opinion of his views, that one vote would have made quite a difference.  Yesterday the Courant had a front-page story on Harris: Haddam School Board Member Rejects Evolution <read>

About three weeks ago he met with several high school science teachers and school administrators in the district, which serves the woodsy, Connecticut Valley towns of Haddam and Killingworth.

“I sort of got stuck on one thing with them, which was basically the teaching of evolution in the schools and how it tends to ride roughshod over the fact that various religions — Christian, Hebrew, Muslim — hold a theistic world view,” Harris said one morning during a break from his job driving a school van. “Evolution is basically an assumption that there is no God.”

Case 2: Three Votes Lead To One Controversial Vote

A few days ago we reported on a District Town Committee election recanvass between two slates of candidates. There was a three vote margin between the lowest winner and the highest looser.  The recanvass dropped several votes from the winners, but not the lowest winner: A Thought Provoking Day at another Recanvass.

Now we learn that the entire town committee vote for chairman was a tie, controversially broken by a temporary chair – one more winner for either slate would have made a difference and/or avoided a controversy: Hartford Democratic Town Committee Election Challenged Over Chairman’s Double Vote : <read>

At issue is whether Ramon Arroyo, who was temporarily elected chairman and who oversaw Thursday’s vote, was within his rights to vote twice for the apparent winner, Georgiana “Jean” Holloway. Arroyo’s second vote broke a 33-33 tie between Holloway and Sean Arena, who was seeking a second two-year term as chairman.


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