Tuesday, September 4, 2012

crunch time

Secretary of State office, 128 State St

This is from the last page of a 5-page article in today's Free Press by Terri Hallenbeck

Primary results official today
Representatives of the Democratic, Progressive and Republican parties will sit down with Secretary of State Jim Condos at 10 a.m. today to “canvass” the results of voting on Primary Election Day.
When officials “canvass” election results they review them and agree whether or not they seem valid.
Condos said if his staff was able to post unofficial results over the holiday weekend as they worked to create the election report for the Tuesday meeting, “It will not be official until signed off by the three parties and myself.”
This morning is when the primary’s low turnout will be confirmed, final tallies in contested races will be declared, and the names of successful write-in candidates will become known.
For example, today is the earliest that supporters of Annette Smith will be able to find out for sure if they secured enough write-in votes to defeat and replace Progressive gubernatorial nominee Martha Abbott.
Smith supporters undertook a late-in-the-game campaign to get their candidate on the ballot as a way to bring up certain issues, such as their opposition to industrial wind power and large-scale electric utility mergers, during the fall gubernatorial debates.
Smith of Danby, executive director of Vermonters for a Clean Environment, was “drafted” for the write-in campaign and didn’t say before the primary whether she would accept the Progressive nomination if her supporters mustered enough votes to get her name on the ballot.
Even before knowing if she would be a candidate, however, Condos said state law required Smith to decide whether she would stay in the race. Aug. 31 was the deadline for all “validly nominated candidates” to withdraw.
“Am I going to withdraw? I’m not a candidate yet,” Smith said Thursday. “I want to see what the results are.”
Smith said she had heard concerns that unofficial vote tallies from some towns weren’t showing as many write-ins as supporters believed had been cast.
“I want to get a fair count,” Smith said. Given the voter concerns she had heard, she said, “I don’t see any fair outcome of this except a recount.”
Barring recounts in this or any other race, Condos expected his election staff would have the final lists of general election candidates for every community by the end of the week.
That means that by Friday, candidates must have communicated whether they will run with more than one political label, if they received more than one nomination.
Ballots for the November election will be sent to town clerks by Sept. 21.

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