Pima County Recorder F. Ann Rodriguez is pushing back against criticism that her office mishandled its election duties.
If voters had precisely followed directions, fewer than 4,000 of the more than 27,000 provisional ballots issued on Election Day would have been necessary, she said in a recent news release.
For starters, 98 people who cast early ballots tried to vote a second time, according to the office's tallies. Those Election Day ballots were invalidated, and an investigation has begun into the voters who cast them.
More than 15,000 received early ballots but decided to show up at the polls on Election Day to cast their ballots there.
Almost 5,000 voters went to their old polling places after moving, and though they should have changed their addresses, their votes counted.
More than 2,000 went to the wrong place altogether, and their votes did not.
About 1,500 people ineligible to vote here tried to cast ballots. More than half had never registered to vote in Pima County, a quarter had been registered but their eligibility had been canceled, and the rest had never registered here at all.
More than 2,500 people received provisional ballots because they had insufficient identification at the polls, changed their name or had court orders to seal their records.
More than 40 ballots were blank or voided, and 24 voters each received two provisional ballots for some reason. The duplicate ballots were canceled.
"As these numbers clearly show, the issue of provisional ballots is controlled not by the Elections Department or the Recorder's Office, but by the voters themselves," Rodriguez wrote in the news release.
Only 5 percent of the provisional ballots issued were the result of errors in the polling place roster lists, she said.
Poll workers in some precincts had trouble finding voters on the rosters at least partly because of aberrations in how the names were ordered. The Recorder's Office plans to release a report with the details of those problems in about two weeks.
Did you know?
If you cast a provisional ballot, you can check whether your vote counted on the website of the Pima County Recorder's Office, www.recorder.pima.gov. Click on the Provisional Ballot Status link. You must have the receipt you were issued on Election Day. If you can't find it or don't have Internet access, call 724-4330.
Distributed by MCT Information Services
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