While the No side has been declared the winner, the Yes side is closing the gap as the final ballots trickle in.
Here’s the situation:
- Yes is trailing by 5,200 votes out of 1.5 million cast and the total keeps shrinking (http://oregonvotes.gov/results/2014G/1029276478.html). An automatic recount happens if the tally shrinks below 0.2% of the total number of ballots (around 3,000).
- According to officials in Multnomah County, 5,900 ballots have yet to be counted because they arrived as unreadable to their machines.
- In addition to these 5,900 ballots, there are 2,800 “challenge” ballots, which are ballots that weren’t signed or where there’s some other voter identification issue. Oregon is a mail-in-ballot only state, so there are a number of voter identification measures in place that are not found in states where in-person voting takes place. Typically, only a small percentage of challenge ballots are resolved. Voters get a letter from the state after the election inviting them to come in and resolve them. This year for the first time, lists of voters submitting ballots that end up in the challenge stack have been made public, which means campaigns and other interested parties can encourage these voters to resolve their ballots. This could lead to an unusually large number of challenge ballots being resolved.
- Multnomah County represents 20% of the electorate and went for the Yes side 62-38 (http://oregonvotes.gov/results/2014G/2013928344.html). This means that once outstanding votes and challenge ballots are counted, the lead will likely shrink considerably.
- We don’t know about the other counties and where they stand. It’s possible they have more or fewer outstanding votes than Multnomah. In any case, it appears there is a good chance for a recount, if not a victory. Counties have to get their votes in by November 24th, and the state will certify a final count on December 4th. For additional information on the companies and brands that financed this referendum, please see The Cornucopia Institute’s posterhere.
Do you like this post?