Yesterday, Pima County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry issued a 22-page memo to the Pima County Board of Supervisors regarding all questions and allegations raised by election-integrity activists at last month's canvas meeting.
For the first time, the county addresses Noel Day, a former elections-division employee who said he saw other elections-division employees counting votes in the wrong place and wrong time during the November 2006 election.
From the memo:
John Brakey: ... Never got to the last bags because I got arrested. Kept civility. Very watchful of this field and the chain of custody because of another audit and Noel Day testified that he walked into warehouse and they had the bags open and questioned why he was there, telling him he shouldn't be there.
Answer: Mr. Noel Day was a seasonal employee for approximately 90 days in late 2006. The allegations are not specific as to what point in the overall process this occurred. After the audit and canvass of an election, it is a normal process for the bags to be opened and the ballots removed and stored for safekeeping. A hand-count audit of the 2006 Primary and General elections established that the count for those 2 elections was accurate.
More from memo on the modem issue and election result delays:
Request to Modify Modem Tabulation Procedure--On September 3, 2008, l communicated with the Party Chairs ... and requested reconsideration of the modem transmission prohibition and suggested either resumption of the precinct level modem transmission or a modified procedure where modem transmission could occur from a number of receiving stations and distributed geographically throughout Pima County. On September 15, 2008, the Party Chairs met to review this request. The result of this meeting was that the Democratic and Libertarian parties continue to have concerns over the modeming of Election Day vote tabulation; therefore, Election Day results will continue to be slow.
Estimated Time Associated with Vote Tabulation for the November General Election--Prior to the Primary Election, the Parties agreed that they will issue a brief statement to the media and general public before the election, signed by all representatives of the four recognized parties, that the public should expect a long delay in compiling the General Election results of November 4, 2008, due to delays associated with non-modem transmission of election results. This signed statement will go out as a press release to the public and general media. The time frames anticipated regarding the delay will be similar to those in the September 2, 2008 Primary Election.
It's a 22-page document, either ready for little debate at the supes' next meeting or early preparations for an Elections Integrity Commission investigation. You can read it here.
I'm now wondering what will happen first: Goddard releasing final results of a yet-to-be-announced AG investigation, or a report from this new, but not-yet-ratified Elections Integrity Commission. I'm thinking the commission, but the reality is those RTA ballots are sitting there just begging to be counted.
But then I keep thinking about a comment someone made on this blog or another: What if the RTA ballots sitting in Pima County Treasurer's vault have been tampered with. I guess if everyone goes in with that in mind, then this will most likely never end, even with an AG investigation or a recount of the RTA ballots. No one will be satisfied, and everything everyone has worked for will mean very little.