After spending all day in court yesterday, the Court issued an order about an hour ago. Here is an update:

We brought ten witnesses to the judge, giving two very interesting stories: Catherine, Robert, Lisa, Melissa, Tara, and James were all provisional ballot voters. They were told that their vote would be counted. However, in Maricopa County, if you vote by provisional ballot in the wrong precinct, your vote will not count. All of them testified that if they would have been told that their vote would not count, they would have driven to their proper voting location.

Kendra, Brian, Tailor and Dalton were Early Ballot Voters, who’s signatures had changed over the years. They each declared under penalty of perjury that they signed their ballots themselves. However, the way the Maricopa Country recorders office compares signatures, their votes did not count.

Those ten voters are a small sample of the more than 300 voters from CD-5 who have similar stories.

In a typical election, these issues do not come to light because most elections are not this close. When you are separated by nine (9) votes, though, it does matter.

Judge Rogers ordered that the votes of the people who were provisional ballot holders (the first group above), shall be counted. This will put eighteen (18) votes back in play.

How did those people vote? I don’t know. When we do, I’ll update you.

Next week, all 85,000 votes in CD-5 will be recounted, and the winner will be decided.

Signed: Christine Jones

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Replies to This Discussion

Well, not really.  Now a 16 point spread.  Christine has been ill-served by the incompetent Joe Kanefield - the former legal counsel for Secretary of State Janice K Brewer and her buffoon Chief of Staff Kevin Tyne.  Joe was totally incompetent in 2002 and obviously time has not improved his competency in Strategies or expertise in Tactics.

No, she has not.  This is not about Christine Jones or Andy Biggs or the lawyers.  It's about counting every single legitimate vote.  The people should not have to go to court to get their vote counted.  That is the point - protecting our cherished right to vote before it's taken from us completely!  Let the will of the people be done!

Absolutely correct, but this is what happens when the voter rolls are not maintained and voters do not keep their voting records updated..... there is personal responsibility involved as well.  

This is the second time in 2 elections that the votes on Congressional elections have been very close.  When people say their vote doesn't count this election is proof that is not even close to the truth.

@Joanne  Which is why an unknown, Aaron Flannery got so many votes to replace our current recorder in Maricopa. I got an early ballot for woman who had not lived in my house for at least 15 years. I called her and she changed her address and gets an early ballot there, too.  I pull my hair out when I hear "I'm only one vote. It won't matter." ignorant people don't get it.

I feel sorry for Christine.  The conundrum is defining "legitimate" and the voter's responsibility to know and follow the law.  Every voter gets a Voter Guide that identifies their polling place.  If they arrive at a polling place and are told that their name is not listed on the register, they have the responsibility to find out where they should be.

The law is clear as to what a voter must do to cast a legitimate vote.  The Law of Unintended Consequences then happened when the judge listened to the pleading of Joe Kanefield and overruled the clear law,  Christine's chances to win in the recount just shrunk from very bad to almost impossible. 

Also, Seitchik should know that the area where votes are to still be counted is the most important determinant in predicting the outcome.  Obviously he did not when he made his ill-considered statement early in the week.

PS: While i personally am sickened with the mere thought of Helen Purcell, the voting laws are statewide,  Casting a ballot at the wrong location is not "legitimate" in all 15 counties, not just Maricopa.  As to the signature issue, I am aware of a case in Yavapai County six years ago where a voter was notified that their signature appeared invalid and that they had to go to the Recorder's Office to correct that problem within a time certain to fix the problem. The voter went in within the allotted time and their vote was still not counted.

@Ben F  According to the article 10 people signed their early ballots and they were rejected and not counted. Is that their fault? As people get older, they aren't going to think they have to re-sign some form to update their aging signatures. That has to be a common problem, common enough for the recorder to do something to relieve that problem. When people register online, where's that signature?  So when an ignorant person goes to the wrong precinct to cast a ballot, there is a responsibility of the poll worker to NOT give them a ballot. I've been a poll worker and that's in the training.  Who goes to the azleg website and reads all the verbiage in title 16?  Ben you are talking about the after election process but I'm interested in the voting/counting process itself.  I don't really have an opinion of those in the after election process. Your Yavapai story is the crux of the problem.  Most people do not have the time or the knowledge to get attorneys to court to get their ballot counted.  It appears that no recorder takes this seriously.  I see no changes on the horizon with Purcell.

OK, one more thought. The founders envisioned self-governance and many people do try to engage in that but we elect the worst possible people to represent us. There are so many laws on the books it's not possible for any of us to know what the heck is going on.  So we elect people like county recorders to train other people to work at the polls or to handle registrations etc.  If we don't need them because all people are supposed to watch the legislature's every move every year why are they there?  I can train anyone to shuffle paper around that they never have to think about. If it's our responsibility to know all these laws and read a voter guide that is so complicated to some and type so small older people can't read it, let's get rid of the elections dept in the recorders offices, print a simplified just the facts voter guide in type big enough to read with the money we save and just hire someone to make up a ballot and send them to all the addresses and to the polls. Of course, that is a ridiculous notion just like expecting all people to be able to keep up with all voter laws.

Oh, I do have a bit of a different perspective on this.  I am happy that someone like Ms. Jones went to court. But only to see that ballots were properly handled and it seems, perhaps, some were not.  If that is true in one district, it's also true in all districts, even those that were not so close.  Perhaps even in the country recorder's race as that was quite close, too.  The law aside, a person of integrity would have wanted to recount that race just to settle the minds of voters. We are promised a full and fair accounting of all votes.  I cannot find a law or a lawyer who says that only pertains to close elections.  We must do the right thing for all voters not just the ones with a high IQ.  We have slipped away from that type of thinking. 

I am old now but in the day, I was a PC, a SC and a busy party worker. Inside the party people were not as grasping as today.  I realize the world has changed as computers and things came along to dissipate our willingness to think.  This has made life more stressful for our young and older people. The limited government has given way to laws that are not even Constitutional.  Once, we could rely on common sense thinking to discern what we must do but today, it's just too much for average people working multiple jobs. We must never limit voters nor pillory those who can't know all that others can know.  My grandchildren could vote at 18 but they were uniformed even though they were whizzes on computer games. Schools no longer teach people how to think but we older people think they do think when they don't even have those skills.  Until such day comes that we require a litmus test for all who wish to cast their vote, we must be vigilant on behalf of those who need that vigilantness.

Amazing how final ballot counts go in favor of the candidate behind in the vote! Purcell's record  doesn't give me much confidence. Maybe just more of the same ....or not

In Cochise County we have gone to "vote centers" virtually eliminating the polling structure.  Voters can vote at any of the vote centers anywhere in the County. It was instituted earlier this year and we have used it for 3 elections. There are still provisionals but for the most part the voters are pleased with the new computer system.

This was implemented by the Elections Dept and not the Recorders Office.  The voter records in the Recorders Office are still a mess and anyone can fill out a voter registration--legal or not.  There are still issues with the registration, records update process but the "election" part is being resolved so it can be done and there are ways to fix it all.  There are still integrity issues and ballot harvesting so those kinds of issues are still there which makes ID at the polls much more important.

In November we will be electing a new County Recorder so those problems will be addressed beginning in January.   

Well this is all very interesting isn't it?  CD-5 may not be impacted by corruption but certainly there is an intelligence accountability problem.  I have been a poll watcher and poll worker in Minnesota, Michigan and Arizona.  Every time a voter shows up at the incorrect polling place, standard procedure is to send them to the correct polling place.  In Arizona, I have witnessed poll supervisor go to a lot of trouble to find out and send the person to the correct place.

As to signatures and proof of citizenship plus signature verification it is all a crock of nonsense.  There is no integrity but the honesty of the voter.  If you sign up a new registered voter what do you check? - Only the driver license not the a birth certificate.  When you go to city hall, county offices or the motor vehicles to change a driver license from one state to the state of Arizona, you can register to vote, show a driver license, sign the papers and go your merry way.  None of which verifies the address.  Think about it.

What prevents a fraud perpetrator from taking the records of dead people and registering them to vote early?  Not much.

The entire country needs a mandatory voter-id system.

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