24,000 Alaska Votes To Go
Monday, November 17, 2008 at 2:45 pm
The Anchorage Daily News reports that by tomorrow we might know whether Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) has managed to hang on to his Senate seat
Most of the 24,000 ballots left to be counted are from Anchorage voters, a good sign for Stevens’ Democratic challenger, Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich, who took the lead in the vote tally last week. Begich was up by 1,022 votes on the last count update.
Begich emailed supporters on Friday asking for money in the event of a recount in early December. There is no automatic recount vote in Alaska, unless there is a tie.
Why is it taking so long for such a small state to count all its votes?
As I’ve noted, the counting has dragged on for two reasons. First, absentee ballots need to be post marked by Election Day, rather than in the hands of the state by that date, as is the case in many other states.
Second, rules were tighter this year after voter fraud was allegedly detected in the state’s last election. Some two dozen voters are suspected of having mailed in their ballot and then voted in person. In response, Alaska waited to begin counting mail-in ballots until after all in-person ballots were counted and the rolls could be compared.
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