A report by Chester County Voter Services has finally been released that identifies the source of electronic vote counting problems in the May 17, 2011 Primary Election – an extra dark blue stripe printed on Republican ballots .
According to the report by Jim Forsythe, Director of Voter Services, the Republican ballots had a dark blue “color bar” printed outside the normal area specified for the scanners used to count ballots across the county. As a result, although the scanners were functioning properly, any ballot placed “face up end first” in the scanner was not counted. While over 100 precincts in Chester County were impacted, the only contest whose outcome was dramatically affected was the Special Election for the remaining portion of a term on the Tredyffrin Board of Supervisors.
On election night, results posted on the Chester County Voter Services Website showed Tredyffrin’s Democratic candidate Molly Duffy with a 44 vote lead over Republican Mike Heaberg, and Main Line Media News declared her the winner. However, 62 ballots – all Republican- were ultimately found that were not counted by the scanning machines. After several weeks, a full manual recount revealed that Duffy had received 25% of those votes, but that Heaberg won the race by a two vote margin.
Both parties agreed that the results of the full manual recount and reconciliations made the result final, and Voter Services has pledged to ensure that future voting forms conform with machine standards. The link below will take you to the full report posted on the Chester County Voter Services website on Friday, September 23.
Molly Duffy and Mike Heaberg are now running for a full four-year term as Supervisor at Large. Also running for Supervisor at Large are Democrat Murph Wysocki and Republican Kristen Mayock. Two of the four candidates will be elected to the two open seats.