Around 50,000 voters received wrong ballots in a large Ohio County this week. The number of absentee ballots issued amount to 21% of the total ballots mailed out in Franklin County, the state capital of Ohio. This means one in every five voters had received incorrect ballots.
The Franklin County Elections Board said 49,669 voters received absentee ballots out of 237,498 that were mailed. A staff had changed a setting on a machine that places absentee ballots into mailing envelopes on Saturday afternoon, said elections officials.
The election board stated that it has started the process of printing and mailing out corrected ballots to every voter who had received wrong ballots. The board stated that the new ballots will be sent through the U.S. Postal Service within 72 hours.
One Person One Vote
The board also clarified that they were following stringent methods to guarantee the proper implementation of one vote per person. The board is all set to also mail postcards to affected voters that will explain the reason for mailing out absentee ballots. It will also have options to vote by mailing ballot or voting in person.
The board said multiple checks are being conducted and it will be made sure that one person gets to cast only one vote. It also said that replacement ballots will be rejected if someone voted in person. Franklin County approximately has 880,000 registered voters and at least 8 million voters have registered in Ohio.
A similar case was reported in New York city too where 100,000 voters had received absentee ballots following an error in the printing machine. Ohio's elections chief announced that Ohio's 88 elections boards had received 2,154,235 absentee ballot applications - more than double the 1,091,188 absentee ballots applications received four years ago.
Election board director Ed Leonard stated that a function of one of those scanners was disabled on October 3 at 2.24 p.m. "This was determined to be the root cause of the system error that led to voters receiving an incorrect ballot," he said. The board has now clarified that the scanner is working fine but the board has launched an investigation into BlueCrest, the vendor for the scanners. Officials also said that the mistake was not nefarious.
Trump Claims Rigged Voting
Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump tried to take advantage of the situation and brought up the issue of rigged voting again, without providing any proof for his claim. "Breaking News: 50,000 OHIO VOTERS getting WRONG ABSENTEE BALLOTS. Out of control. A Rigged Election," he tweeted.
The Franklin County Board of Elections also took to twitter to react to Trump's claims. "Mr. President, it certainly was a serious mistake, but a serious mistake that we're working hard to make right. Our board is bipartisan and our elections are fair. And every vote will be counted," the board tweeted. In fact, Trump's claims are contradicted by members of Republican Party and even law enforcement officials in his administration have spoken against these claims.