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Group Wants Investigation into Absentee Ballot Count for Rashida Tlaib’s District

The August 4th Primary in Michigan saw a historically high number of absentee ballots and there is a disturbance all through the state of Michigan about it, but especially in Wayne Country, which is where Rashida Tlaib won her primary against Brenda Jones, and where a city clerk is facing a take over of her office if she doesn’t get serious about counting votes right.

The Detroit News reported about the most recent election,” Recorded ballot counts in 72% of Detroit’s absentee voting precincts didn’t match the number of ballots cast, spurring officials in Michigan’s largest county to ask the state to investigate ahead of a pivotal presidential election.

“I would be pissed. If I’m just Joe Voter, I would be pissed. I mean, to me, this is just incompetence,” said William Hartmann to Fox News Detroit, a member of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers. “We do a canvas and the canvas has got, it’s like an audit of your checkbook,” he explained.

“The problem with the August primary is that the board did certify the election but had to note discrepancies in more than 70% of absentee-voting precincts in Detroit. The discrepancies were between the number of absentee ballots cast versus the number recorded by election workers,”Hartmann said.

That rings hallow to local election authorities. A group has demanded answers and an investigation.

Without an explanation from Detroit election workers for the mismatches, the Wayne County Board of Canvassers requested this week for Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s office to examine the “training and processes” used in Detroit’s Aug. 4 primary, which one official described as a “perfect storm” of challenges. The board is charged with certifying election results.

According to Michigan election officials,” more than 2 million absentee ballots were requested and more than 1.6 million were returned. That broke the record for absentee ballots by 300,000. That record was set in the 2016 presidential election.”

A local news report online said, “Forty-six percent of all precinct numbers were askew, canvassers were told. According to state law, precincts cannot be counted where poll books — that is, a list of registered voters in that precinct — are not matched with the ballots.

Data presented to the board said 81 precincts, including 73 absentee voter precincts, were +/- 5 votes “without explanation.”

Monica Palmer, one of the Republican members of the four-person Wayne County Board of Canvassers, told the Detroit News that procedures were not followed. “It was so inaccurate that we can’t even attempt to make it right,” Palmer said.

Detroit City Clerk Janice Winfrey said there were just minor problems. According to the Detroit Free Press, some people are very unhappy about Winfrey.

“Winfrey has one job that’s more important than anything else her office does: administer elections.  And Winfrey — yet again — is woefully failing at her job,” wrote Darren Nichols.

Winfrey was a math teacher before entering public office, she should know that her crew only got 28% of precincts accurate.

That’s an F by anybody’s standard. That’s because the clerk’s job calls for getting as close to 100% of precincts correct, particularly at a time when more absentee ballots are being cast statewide.

The issue is so troubling that the Wayne County Board of Canvassers and Mayor Mike Duggan are calling for help from Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s staff, to ensure these problems won’t happen in November. Yesterday, the state Board of Canvassers approved a resolution requiring Winfrey’s office to make changes before the November election or face a state takeover. But it’s unclear what Benson’s office can do, especially if Winfrey won’t admit that she needs help,” Nicholas wrote.

Tlaib had faced her Aug. 4th Primary challenger, Brenda Jones in 2018 and had won by a slim margin, leaving the large margin of victory in 2020 suspicious with the new information.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Margaret Emsick

    August 26, 2020 at 11:07 pm

    What is being done?

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