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March 14, 2005




Small Correction:
You said 40 ballots were disqualified from the 348 improperly fed provisional ballots. The Seattle Times article you referred to says **92** were disqualified. Meaning 73% were valid. Logan stated today that 83% of these provisionals were qualified, so the Times article could be wrong.

(He mentioned most of them were not properly registered to vote, but some were registered in other counties and their ballots were sent to those counties for processing.)

Logan today, said that the number of provisionals fed through the vote machines without proper verification could be as high as the 660 vote "adjustement" number, and that the already confirmed number of 348 could be containted within that larger 660 number.

Otherwise I pretty much agree with you, there is very little here to help the Rossi case.


I actually meant to refer to the PI story, which I unhelpfully neglected to provide a link to. Here is what I base my statement on:

Huennekens said that of those, 252 were filled out by legal voters (although it's not possible to know which ballots were the legal ones); the identity of about 50 of the 348 voters could not be determined; and about 40 of those provisional ballots were cast by persons ineligible to vote.

Based on this, it's possible that all 50 others were also ineligible, but we don't know--and it sounds like some of them may have been valid, but in other counties.
I could agree that specific to King, ballots intended for other counties would be ineligible for King races--but for the governor, they would be legitimate. At least, they would have come from legal voters. But the bottom line is that there are only about 11% known illegal votes.



It seems to me that you're whistling past the graveyard.

Either that, or you just haven't looked closely at the reconciliation report.

The last page of the reconciliation report shows the totals: 216 ballots that came from who-knows-where but somehow got into the voting machines; 660 provisional ballots were inserted into the voting machines, based on the deductions of the canvassers; and another 348 provisional ballots were inserted into the voting machines based on the reports of the polling place officers and the deductions of the canvassers.

That's a total of 1224 ballots which were included in the vote count even though they were not lawfully cast.

And, since the reconciliation report omitted all the precincts that used the St. Benedict's polling place, it isn't a complete report.

The number may well be higher than 1224.

I don't yet know what other polling places may have been omitted from it. (In their usual unhelpful fashion, the King County elections office didn't total the number of votes counted on election night, so there is no ready indication of how many other polling places were mistakenly omitted from the report. The "Election Day MC" and "Add-ons" columns could have been totaled easily using their spreadsheet function, but they didn't do it.)

The fellow who accompanied Logan, named Triplett (I think they said he was Sims' chief of staff) stated in his opening remarks that there were approximately 1200 polling place ballots and 400 absentee ballots that couldn't be matched to any voters. That's the first time I've heard a King County official admit that absentee ballots contributed to the problem of the "voterless ballots."

You need to read more closely, so you can perhaps overcome your desire to see only what you want to see. (Either that, or admit that walking past the graveyard frightens you, and stop the whistling.) Drop by "Croker Sack" and see what we reasonable folks have to say about the information released by King County on Friday afternoon. There are still plenty of puzzles to work out. ;-)


Micajah, Logan's testimony on the provisionals gave 660 as the reconciliation adjustment; the 348 are not in addition; there was overlap.

Your characterization of the 216 ballots without voters is apropos of nothing; you make it seem as if it's magic rather than human error. And unless you have information to supply me with on it, the 216 and the 158/9 are potentially matching discrepancies in many cases.

Further, your conception of provisional ballots as not lawfully cast is more excitist rhetoric. They were not properly cast, but the votes were in fact valid. Whatever total you'd like to use, cut it nearly by a factor of 10 before you talk about unlawful votes.

Two points you might have missed:

*1200 is quite a bit lower than 1860, is it not? Meaning an already overwhelmingly accurate count just got a fair bit more accurate.

*Vote totals are nearly meaningless, especially now that we have upper bounds to our speculation about the extent of any error. By no stretch does the extent represent unusual, preventable or neglectful rates of inaccuracy, as has been shown repeatedly from multiple sources. The question is of what value these mishandled votes are to the election contest. And I'll answer it for you--fewer than 20 Rossi votes, at best, in their wildest fantasies of accepted evidence.


TJ - Great post, thanks for summarizing all that. As I see it, Republicans are now desperately hoping for some "judicial activism" in their election contest.

Usually the GOP rails against any case where a judge has to "interpret" a law to make a ruling. But now, since by any "strict" interpretation of the constitution or established case law the GOP has no case, they want the judge to make some new law in the spirit of "fairness" (or because of "uncertainty", etc.).

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