Thursday, November 13, 2008

Senator Reynolds Recount

Today, I spent 8 hours watching the recount of the ballots of Senator Jim Reynolds and his opponent, David Boren. To bring you up to speed on Sen. Reynolds' race, going back to filing day, a person, by the name of David Boren filed to run against Senator Reynolds, only minutes prior to the campaign deadline. During the months ahead David Boren did nothing to get elected, no ads, no door hangers, no door knocking, no nothing, zilch, natta. Then just a few days prior to the November General Election, the Democrats started running TV and radio ads claiming all kinds of issues against Senator Reynolds. None of the TV ads had any truth to them. Reynolds won the race by 159 votes. Then, last week Boren filed for recount.

Several of us were asked to be watchers on behalf of the Republican Party and Jim Reynolds. We went to the State Party Tuesday to go through the format of the recount. See below directions.

1. The recounts will be held at tables. Four Election Board employees will be stationed at each table. A Caller, a Stacker and Two Tallyers. Both candidates are allowed one Watcher per table.
2. Ballots will be viewed one at a time. The Watcher will call out the name of the candidate as indicated on the ballot. The Stacker will take possession of the ballot and set it in a finished stack.
3. When the caller states the name of the appropriate candidate, the Tallyers will mark on piece of paper, in groups of five votes.
4. Watchers are to have an unobstructed view of the ballots. If you see anything remiss, you are to raise your hand or express objection verbally. The ballot will be set aside for review by members of the Election Board.

Thursday morning, we met at the Election Board and then proceeded over to the Court House for a brief hearing in Judge Hetherington's Court room.

The amazing part about the recount fiasco today neither Boren, his attorney nor watchers appeared in court for the brief hearing. Since Reynolds Senate Seat includes part of Cleveland County and Oklahoma County they also had a hearing in Oklahoma City where Boren was an hour late for that hearing. At our hearing, the judge instructed the recount to go forward. We left the court room and proceeded back across the street to the election board. We thought the counting of the ballots would take place at the Court House where there was plenty of room to process the votes. Instead of utilizing one of the large rooms, at the Court House the Election Board Secretary, Paula Roberts had small tables set up in the Election Board office.

The Election Board Secretary instructed her staff the formality of the recount that morning. The recount was very disorganized and crowded, at first. Four tables were set up with four people to a table. Two Republicans and two Democrats assigned to each table along with one Democrat and one Republican watcher. It was difficult to hear the names with others reading names only a few feet away.

The Election Board employees were all very interested and dedicated individuals. They took their assignments very seriously and it was very obvious they wanted to get the count completed in a fair and honest manner. Everyone of the individuals should be commended for being such diligent workers.

After 8 hours of counting close to 11,000 ballots, Jim Reynolds had a net gain of 1 vote. Man what a waste of time, energy and money. Tomorrow they will finish the recount in Oklahoma County. I am willing to bet the outcome will be the same as Cleveland County.

Special thanks to the Cleveland County Election Board for a job well done.

1 comment:

Jethro Bodine said...

This Boren dude sounds like a piece of work. With Reynolds only gaining 2 votes after counting 20,000 votes it shows the integrity of our voting system.