JUST ONE QUARTER OF THE VOTES HAVE BEEN COUNTED IN DISTRICT 35
11/8/2018 UPDATE: An update to the count has been posted at the Division of Elections.
The director of the Division of Elections said this morning that it is not the machines themselves that were broken, but at the end of the night on Tuesday the Election workers tried to print the results from the optical scanning units, the “Ender Cards” were no longer functioning because their tracker marks — bar codes — were not being read by the machines. The Division is working with Dominion Voting Systems to determine why. There are paper ballots to back up the results, she said.
Further, the delivery of the memory cards from these machines and the other election materials, the Sitka Goldstreak Office was closed in the early morning hours before the flight left Sitka. Those materials then arrived in Juneau after the Gold Streak office was closed.
The polls closed at 8 pm on Tuesday, and the House District 35 seat occupied by Rep. Jonathan Kreiss-Tompkins was reported to remain with Kreiss-Tomkins, who hopped on a plane Wednesday to head for Anchorage and the House minority caucus organizational meeting.
But only 1,276 votes were counted for Kreiss-Tomkins, and 974 votes counted for challenger Richard Wein.
What happened to about 4,000 votes that have just gone missing?
According to reports from local residents, two voting machines in Sitka (Precinct 1 and 2), as well as one each in Craig, Klawock, Prince of Wales Island, and Kake, are said to have malfunctioned.
No other voting machines around the state failed — only six, and all in District 35. What are the odds?
The “end cards” didn’t go through the machines properly, and so the chips are being sent to Juneau by air. As of now, six precincts have had no ballots counted, Must Read Alaska has learned.
As of Wednesday evening, the Division of Elections had issued no notification about why so many machines failed in just one district. Nor has it explained where the ballots are from those machines, what the plan is for counting those ballots, and how the public can be assured of the security of those votes.
Must Read Alaska will contact the Division of Elections for answers on Thursday, but for now, there are as many as 4,000 ballots in the wild, with no public notification as to their whereabouts.