Ann Driver: I couldn’t see well enough
I feel a need to respond to Victoria Penate’s front page article in the Jan. 8 edition of The Union regarding the happenings at the Capitol on Wednesday, January 6.
I too am horrified by what happened. There is no excuse for the mayhem, the damage, the murder and injury that occurred. But I felt the same way all summer with the riots happening in cities throughout our great country and was angered by the lack of front page articles about the destruction in such cities as Seattle, Portland and even in little La Mesa near San Diego. Where was that anger expressed in the mainstream media?
Are you, like me, asking if we are in a battle for the life and soul of our nation? Many of us believe so. Our president received over 70 million votes, the most of any sitting president in our nation’s history, yet he lost to a man who didn’t even campaign. How did that happen?
I am uncomfortable with the results of this election for the simple reason that I observed our local Nevada County ballot processing at the Rood Center Election Office after the Nov. 3 election.
I ended up spending two afternoons there after training with the Election Integrity Project (EIP).
It honestly seemed to be a wasted effort as I was unable to see adequately what was going on. I would have needed X-ray vision to actually see what was on the ballots. I asked the election clerk a couple of questions, which she really didn’t answer, and was instructed to stand on a marked spot in the corner.
I was about 25 feet from where the election clerk and two others were “resolving” ballots in order to ascertain what the voter actually meant if it wasn’t clear. There were 12 large blue boxes full of ballots they were examining (blue was for “resolving,” according to a chart on the wall). Here again, there was no way I could see what was going on. Only one time the election clerk read off some write-in names such as “Sylvester the cat,” etc., and everyone laughed.
I was later allowed in a large room where there were three people working, flattening ballots to prepare to run them through the counting machines.
Two days later I observed the ballot “duplication” process. If a ballot was damaged, filled in with pencil, or from overseas, they had to redo it in order to run it through the counting machines. This process involved two persons across a table from each other, one to read off the voter’s selections and the other to mark a fresh ballot. They would then reverse the process to double check the markings. I was able to hear a pair from across the room, but could not see the ballots and was not allowed to check any closer.
After this experience in our hometown I now really question the accuracy of our elections. I heard that in one state a recount has been demanded because only 12 votes separated the candidates. Some years ago a local Nevada County city council seat was won by only five or six votes. Were the counts correct? I wonder …
Our election laws state that we as citizens have the right to oversee the accuracy of the ballot count. How can we, under these circumstances?
Ann Driver lives in Rough and Ready.
Editor’s note: No allegations of fraud have been registered with Nevada County’s elections office, nor vote totals questioned. The proceedings were video taped, as well.
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