350,000 AZ votes uncounted: It’s not over ’til it’s overby Pamela Powers Hannley on Nov. 03, 2010, under 2010 elections, Arizona, Gabrielle Giffords, Jesse Kelly, John C. Scott, medical marijuana, Raul Grijalva, Ruth McClung, Tucson
According to the map on the Arizona Secretary of State’s website, all of Arizona’s counties have reported their election results from yesterday’s midterm election.
In actuality, Secretary of State Ken Bennett today announced that there are 350,000 early and provisional ballots yet to be counted statewide. Earlier in the day, it appeared as if the Pima County Recorder’s office was the only laggard– with 35,000 early and provisional votes uncounted– but not so, Pima has only 10% of the uncounted ballots.
Why have so many votes not been tallied? Arizona law allows voters to received paper ballots in the mail. They can be dropped in the US Mail for approximately a month, but when voters procrastinate and get too close to the election day, they must deliver their mail-in ballots at any polling place by 7 p.m. on election day.
According to Bennett (who was interviewed on the John C. Scott Show today on The Jolt, 1330AM), approximately 250,000 mail-in ballots were delivered to polling places on election day, and another 80,000+ provisional ballots were issued at the polling places. (A voter is given a provisional ballot for multiple reasons; for example, their address on record doesn’t match their address on the identification or records show they got a mailed ballot.)
According to Bennett, counties have until 10 days after the election to submit their final totals.
So what? Well, there are several races that are very close– most notably Raul Grijalva vs Ruth McClung, Gabrielle Giffords vs Jesse Kelly, Prop 203 (medical marijuana), Prop 110 (state lands trust) and Prop 112 (changing petition deadlines). Grijalva and Giffords are currently winning by fewer than 5,000 votes, and all three propositions are currently losing by less than 1%.
It ain’t over, folks.