Monday, November 14, 2011

The review of Pascagoula's Fair precinct in the District 111 House race has begun

Jackson County's 5 Election Commissioners has begun the review of the Fair precinct in the District 111 House race between Rep. Brandon Jones (D-Pascagoula) and Charles Busby (R-Pascagoula).

The Election Commission (a majority Republican body) voted unanimously yesterday to examine the poll books in Fair to determine whether or not voters in that precinct received the correct ballots on election day. The Fair precinct is split 6 ways, meaning there are 6 different ballot styles for that precinct.

Nearly 1,500 people voted in the Fair precinct on election day. There is a 35 vote difference between Jones and Busby, meaning that errors in distributing 35 or more of the approximately 1,500 ballots would place the election in limbo.


bill said...

I understand that 35 votes is a slim margin and the taxpayers shouldn't complain about having to spend a little money to insure that the election was fair (no pun intended), but when Brandon Jones won by 11 votes in 2007 did all this same stuff take place? I honestly don't know - don't live near the district.

Cottonmouth said...

Bill, the only difference between the 2007 count and the 2011 count was the review of the Fair precinct. In 2007, the Fair precinct was not involved in the District 111 race, as the Girl Scouts and Chico precincts stood alone. This time, Girl Scouts, Chico, and Arlington (a District 110 precinct) were merged into the Fair precinct, creating a precinct that is split 6 ways.

The cause for concern about the Fair precinct arose once it became evident that the Girl Scouts and Chico precincts suffered a 9% drop in apparent turnout from 2007, something that did not track in any way with the district's turnout trend. Given the fact that over 1,400 voters showed up at Fair on election day, the small margin of victory, and the unexplained drop in turnout, the Election Commission (majority Republican, by the way) decided it was necessary to review the Fair precinct to ensure that people got the right ballots. The election commission did that review, and as a result, the results are unassailable, and the people of Jackson County can have complete faith that the election results are rock solid.