This type of voting machine was used in many counties in New Jersey during Tuesday's super tense governor elections, state legislative elections, and local elections.
County officials said on Wednesday that opinion poll workers in several towns in Union County did not follow proper procedures when removing the USB flash drive that recorded each vote, which led to the emergence of some results from New Jersey’s super close to the governor’s campaign and other campaigns on election night. Delay.
“Workers leave some USB sticks in the machine or take them out when the machine transfers the total,” said Joanne Rajoppi, a union county clerk who oversees the county election process and is responsible for proving the results.
Rajoppi said that procedural issues affected 18 voting machines in four or five towns. According to election regulations, county officials must obtain a court order from a state high court judge before they can open the machines to retrieve data. .
She said the good news is that all data is retrievable, so all votes cast on these machines will be recorded correctly.
"We also have paper backups, so nothing will be lost," Rachopi told NJ Advance Media on Wednesday. "Everything is guaranteed."
When asked whether the election results of these machines are reliable, she said, "I am very confident - I am very sure, 100% sure."
Rajoppi described the incident as an inadvertent mistake made by a small number of poll workers. "Unfortunately, they had a long day and they wanted to go home but didn't take the care they should be," she said.
It is unclear when the votes for these 18 machines will be counted. The staff of the county election committee must visit every polling station and inspect every machine.
Update (November 4): The county election office stated that it has inspected all 18 machines and has retrieved the total number of votes and added it to the previous total reported in each election. Voting machines are located in Fanwood, Elizabeth, Linden, Roselle and Plainfield.
Rajoppi said that after 18 voting machines had problems and the results of all other voting machines in the county had been reported, the vote counting in the Lianhe County election stopped late on Tuesday night, that is, before 11:25 in the evening.
"It stopped because this is all I have," the county secretary said of election statistics. "On election night, we never miss anything. We have to count everything."
Rajoppi said the county’s results announced on Tuesday night and early Wednesday included all votes cast by voters who went to polling stations on election day-except for the 18 machines that involved procedural errors. In addition, the statistics also include polls held at seven locations across the county during the early voting period (October 23 to October 31), and mailed votes received on election day, she said.
Rajoppi said the county plans to update the total number of votes in each electoral district when it receives more mailed ballots, noting that as long as they are postmarked by November 2nd, these ballots will be accepted by November 8.
On November 8, the county will also count any certified provisional votes. Provisional ballots are paper ballots that are used for voters who cannot confirm their eligibility to vote or who have applied to vote by mail.
As of 1pm on Wednesday, Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy is far ahead of the Republican opponent Jack Ciattarelli in Union County, the traditional Democratic base camp. According to the results published by the County Clerk’s Office and the Associated Press, Murphy received 77,151 votes (nearly 61%) across the county, and Ciattarelli received 48,600 votes (about 38%).
Update (November 4): After counting the votes of 18 machines and updating the election results for each town, Murphy's county-wide votes climbed to 78,923, and Ciattarelli's total votes climbed to 49,382.
Read more: In the thin race for the governor of New Jersey, what other votes need to be counted?
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Len Melisurgo can be contacted at LMelisurgo@njadvancemedia.com.
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