ProJo Looks At ’06 Voting Discrepencies

Paul Edward Parker of the ProJo investigated the voter rolls and found some discrepancies.

The Board of Elections — which oversees the counting of votes — says 392,884 voters cast ballots in the Nov. 7 general election.
The secretary of state’s Elections Division — which oversees the state’s Central Voter Registration System and tracks who voted in which elections — counted 387,952 voters in the same election as of Jan. 16. In a new tally Monday, that number had risen to 390,340.
That leaves 4,932 ballots that were cast without a voter voting — or 2,544, depending on which number you use from the secretary of state.
The Providence Journal began examining the results of the November election this spring, after reporting last fall that the names of nearly 5,000 registered voters in Rhode Island appear on a federal list of dead people. The Journal sought to find out whether any of those dead people voted.
The newspaper’s review found no evidence of systematic fraud by people casting ballots in the names of voters who had died. But it did find a voter tracking system susceptible to error that could throw into doubt the results of close elections.

Robert Kando, executive director of the Board of Elections, attributed the discrepancies to errors in how voter tracking information was entered into the secretary of state’s computer system. “I don’t have the slightest inclination there was ballot stuffing.”
Kando said that comparing the number of votes cast to the number of voters who checked in at each precinct is not part of the process of declaring the results of an election. “We certify winners without doing that. That doesn’t mean we don’t validate our system by examining that.”

Feeling confident? You can find the numbers for your town here.

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