Slow Counting ≠ Fraud
Here we are, waiting on final election results. Arizona, California, Georgia and Florida provide the headlines, but the issue presents itself in any state—50, at last count—which accepts any ballots by mail.
Voting live on Election Day? Some machines let you walk away when you’re done, and the machine has already tallied your selections. In other instances, you fill in bubbles on a paper ballot, and place your ballot in a secure box. Box emptied. Reader software reads and tallies.
Voting by mail? Ballot counting requires extra steps. Opening envelopes. Signature checking. Then, reader software … .
If the ballot gets mailed in promptly, elections personnel handle it early. Signatures get verified day by day. (My signature has varied. The phone call comes, I answer questions and apologies, and that’s that.)
By the end of election day, at least in Arizona, the counters have their “in-person voter” duties plus the heavy number of ballots which arrive by mail in the few days before Election Day plus the “late earlies”—the mail-in ballots which come late in the process—which get dropped off right up until 7:00 p.m. Lots of ballots, all of which have the special processing requirements.
In Arizona the Rs filed suit, complaining about different counties using different processes to deal with signature discrepancies. Their argument invokes the Equal Protection clause in the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the same argument George W. Bush used to get himself into the White House as something more than H.W.’s boy. Bush v. Gore explains the argument in the elections context.
I believe the statute at issue in Arizona is A.R.S. 16-552. It sets out a process for dealing with ballot challenges and gives early election boards in the counties a window within which it must address them. The window closes, completely, by 5:00 p.m. on the Monday after Election Day. (Not to clear to me? What happens when that Monday is Veterans Day.)
Blah, Blah, blah, my SO would say, along about now. Bottom line? The law sets forth a process and gives counties some discretion. I think that’s a constitutional process, eight days a week!
Then there’s the fraud noise. From everywhere. No one should find these allegations surprising, for few among us give much thought to processes we don’t see. Those of us with more yesterdays than tomorrows know from races called by bedtime, and those that go later involving very close contests … with all votes counted by morning at the latest. Who thinks about hundreds of thousands of ballots, in sealed envelopes, needing signature checks? Who thinks about the fact that these ballots get concentrated in urban areas? Etc. So much easier to blather on about fraud, thieving Libtards, etc.
Onward and upward we go, knowing one senator from each of Arizona and Florida, and a governor from each of Florida and Georgia, will hold office with roughly half of the populace believing him or her unworthy.
In the greatest nation on Earth, can we not aspire to something better?