High Hopes: Med Marijuana Moves Ahead

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Just a few days ago, we expressed skepticism that Prop 203, the medical marijuana initiative, would make a comeback, but with the counting of provisional ballots, the Yes side now has a 4,421 vote lead over the No side.

Matt Benson of the Arizona Secretary of State's Office fills us in on how many votes remain to be counted:

How many ballots are left to be counted?

As of Friday afternoon, there are an estimated 8,000 early ballots and 2,000 provisional ballots that are yet to be processed and counted. With the exception of a very small number of unprocessed write-in ballots statewide, all remaining uncounted ballots are in Maricopa County. Elections officials have indicated they plan to continue processing and tabulating ballots this weekend.

What about voters who cast a “conditional provisional” ballot?

These individuals had insufficient identification when they went to vote

at a polling place. They had five business days, or until the end of Tuesday, Nov. 9, to return to their county elections office with proper ID (ie. an Arizona driver’s license, etc.).

Recount, anyone?

State law reads as follows:
16-661. Automatic recount; requirements; exemption
A. A recount of the vote is required when the canvass of returns in a primary or general election shows that the margin between the two candidates receiving the greatest number of votes for a particular office, or between the number of votes cast for and against initiated or referred measures or proposals to amend the Constitution of Arizona, is less than or equal to the lesser of the following:
1. One-tenth of one per cent of the number of votes cast for both such candidates or upon such measures or proposals.
2. Two hundred votes in the case of an office to be filled by state electors and for which the total number of votes cast is more than twenty-five thousand.
3. Fifty votes in the case of an office to be filled by state electors and for which the total number of votes cast is twenty-five thousand or less.
4. Two hundred votes in the case of an initiated or referred measure or proposal to amend the constitution.
5. Fifty votes in the case of a member of the legislature.

Example: A margin of less than or equal to 200 votes would trigger a recount for each statewide proposition. SO, IN THE CASE OF PROP 203, A RECOUNT WOULD BE TRIGGERED IF THE FINAL VOTE MARGIN IS 200 VOTES OR FEWER.
Remember: There is no provision in state law allowing a candidate or ballot-measure committee to demand a recount.

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