The 2016 presidential election has already been filled with election board scandals, controversy, and votes being lost all over the place. Tonight’s primary election in Kentucky is not even fully over as of this writing, but the controversy is truly heating up. At one point, card readers malfunctioned and votes were fully erased from Pike County, Kentucky. This ended up pushing Hillary Clinton ahead of Bernie Sanders and angering a lot of voters.
At one point, Pike County actually had all of their data wiped away and cleared out to represent all zeroes in the vote totals. Upon returning, 20 percent of the total votes were missing and Clinton’s numbers were pushed up over Bernie Sanders.
WKYT reported that the AP had actually “erased all votes from Pike County” and those numbers pushed Clinton back up by over 4,000. The Pike County Clerk’s Office said that there was an issue with one of their card readers, and it ended up causing them to have a delay on their numbers.
Social media users are losing their minds with this situation, and Pike County, Kentucky, is said to be demanding a recount.
— GEM (@gerri_elise) May 18, 2016
Apparently, it wasn’t just Pike County that was reporting some problems in Kentucky as a number of others were having issues. Early in the night, at least five Kentucky counties had some kind of technical problem and it caused issues with vote counts.
- Pike County – Election official
- Floyd County – Special or absentee ballot/One electioneering within 100 feet of polls
- Rowan County – Election official and procedural question
- Boyd County – Voting machine
- Johnson County – Procedural question
As of 10:20 p.m. Eastern, Oregon Live was reporting that Hillary Clinton was leading Bernie Sanders in Kentucky by a tally of 46.7 percent to 46.3 percent. Some are stating it is too close to call with 99 percent of the votes counted, but most believe that the issues in different counties are a big problem.
No one really thought that Hillary Clinton had a chance in Kentucky due to her long-standing issues with the coal industry. Many in Kentucky have personally and publicly spoken out against her being voted in as the Democratic nominee and vowed to vote against her.
Now, some on social media are saying that even though the numbers seem too close to call, Hillary Clinton is still far enough ahead of Bernie Sanders to take Kentucky. The problem here is if the numbers are what they’re supposed to be.
By my figuring, 13 precincts are still outstanding. @HillaryClinton ahead by 1800 votes. If those numbers are accurate, it’s over.
— Joe Gerth (@Joe_Gerth) May 18, 2016
Around five percent of voters are said to be listed as “Uncommitted” or more of a “none of the above” type stance. That could end up meaning that they voted for Clinton when they meant to vote for Sanders and vice versa.
The serious issue at hand is that even if the erased votes from Pike County are said to all be back and accounted for, are they accurate? How will anyone know if they are? Will a recount even be considered?
No matter what ends up happening tonight in Kentucky, there are likely going to be those that want a recount of some kind. The votes being lost in Pike County, and different problems across multiple Kentucky counties will have people wanting the result to be changed. Hillary Clinton pulling ahead of Bernie Sanders hadn’t really happened until the problems in Pike County, and it’s going to be interesting to see what is done with the results once they’re in.
[Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]