Nearly 40,000 Provisional Ballots In Brooklyn Will Be Counted, New York Lawsuit Continues To Press For More

A week after a scandalous Democratic primary election in the State of New York, New York City’s Board of Elections Executive Director, Michael Ryan, said that he was sorry for the registration errors that resulted in well over 120,000 Democratic voters purged from voter rolls. PBS reported the estimate of New York City Board of Election’s purged registered Democrats in Brooklyn to be closer to 126,000 voters.

Tuesday, Ryan promised that every single eligible provisional ballot that was cast in New York City last Tuesday would be counted before the election was certified.

Ryan further apologized at the weekly Board of Commissioners’ meeting if the registration issues “caused any amount of the public trust in the voter process in New York City to erode.” Ryan vouched for his own integrity and the integrity of the other staff members on the Board of Elections in New York City.

The Board of Elections also voted to uphold the unpaid suspension of Diane Haslett-Rudiano, the Chief Clerk of Brooklyn, where 37,214 people ended up voting by affidavit. Haslett-Rudiano was blamed for many of the voter registration problems on Election Day. Another 26,131 voters cast their votes by affidavit in the Bronx, and Staten Island saw 4,566 provisional ballots, the New York Daily News reported. Thousands of other voters who believed they were registered left their polling locations after being denied the opportunity to use a regular ballot.

New York voters also reported to the Board other voting problems such as too few poll workers, long lines, and broken machines. Manhattan poll worker Jay Wishner explained to the Board of Elections at the meeting that the coordinator at his site was “so clueless” that when the voting machines broke, she had no idea how to let voters cast their ballots by hand. He said she didn’t even know there was an alternative ballot procedure.

American Elections Ranked Worst Among Western Democracies https://t.co/RSqVslp3iz#NYPrimary #NotMeUs #DemTownHall pic.twitter.com/3yvjtQMyRT

— The Socialist Times (@Socialist_Times) April 26, 2016

Meanwhile, political reporter for TYT announced this week that an audit of ballots was taking place in Suffolk County, New York, after reports of election fraud in that county.

The New York Board of Elections, on the other hand, filed a motion pertaining to the Election Justice USA lawsuit that was filed on behalf of purged voters asking for a time extension. Chariton suspects the Board is hoping to delay the lawsuit past the deadline for certification of the New York results.

Still, Election Justice USA moves forward with the New York lawsuit, and the announcement that Brooklyn will count provisional ballots does not change the voter’s rights organizations plans. Election Justice continues to investigate reports of election fraud. Reports indicate that if the same issues were happening abroad, the U.S. would be loudly accusing others of election fraud, like Ambassador John Tefft suggested in testimony to the House International Relations Committee when exit polls substantially differed from election results in previous Ukraine elections.

Officials say that early voting could have accounted for the discrepancies in exit polls, but many voters are demanding a hand recount of 10 percent of New York ballots, given the problems voters already encountered and the decline in trust that the voter purge created in New York.

That additional tally of nearly 40,000 provisional ballots cast in Brooklyn won’t flip the state in Sanders’ favor, but could put a significant dent in Clinton’s lead over Sanders in Brooklyn. There is no way to know how the race could have played out in Brooklyn had the 126,000 voters not been purged from the rolls there to begin with.

[Image via Pixabay]