Democrats have an awful lot of luck following them around these days. It seems that during the most contested elections, days or hours after the final reported ballots have been counted, hundreds or thousands more votes are found, sometimes even in the trunk of a car. And surprisingly, these votes tend to overwhelmingly favor the Democrat candidate. What an amazing and totally not suspicious coincidence.
Recently, hundreds of “uncounted” votes appeared out of the wilds of a Columbus suburb, the county’s Democrat stronghold, Franklin. The 588 previously “unreported” votes shrank the margin between Republican Troy Balderson and Democrat Danny O’Connor by adding 190 votes to O’Connor’s totals. Republican Troy Balderson leads by 1,564 votes in the Ohio election. If the vote difference between the candidates is less than 0.5%, Ohio state law demands an automatic recount.
While Republican Troy Balderson claimed victory in the Ohio election Tuesday night, Democrat Danny O’Connor remains somehow convinced that the contest will end with him as the winner.
🚨 6:05 PM UPDATE 🚨
We just netted 190 VOTES from Franklin County!
We're confident DANNY WILL WIN once ALL the votes are counted, but we spent EVERYTHING we had on the Special Election.
Please donate $5 to make sure EVERY LAST VOTE is counted fairly.https://t.co/c4xUZd1ngr
— Danny O'Connor (@dannyoconnor1) August 8, 2018
“No refunds”: recount unlikely to change results
Even if there is an automatic recount, it is extremely unlikely that it will change the voting totals by more than a couple hundred points in either direction, thus making the chances that it impacts the contest marginally slim. In 2016. Green Party candidate Jill Stein took it upon herself to initiate a failed recount campaign for Democrat Hillary Clinton across multiple states and it didn’t change a thing. She raised millions of dollars more than required for her efforts from the pockets of angry Democracts looking for any glimmer of hope at a time when there wasn’t much going around for them. “No refunds!” comes to mind.
In the case of the Ohio election, a recount is likely to happen. The margin between Troy Baldserson and Danny O’Connor is less than 1% and is expected to become razor thin; however, the recount, again, is unlikely to make a difference.
Thousands of votes waiting to be counted in Ohio Election
There are nearly 9,000 uncounted ballots that must be accounted for by August 24th, according to Cincinnati.com. While the votes are counted, the Republicans and Democrats are both fighting in the court of public opinion about who actually won. The Republicans have already claimed victory, while the Democrats say they won’t concede until the thousands of remaining votes are tallied.
But how do we know these new votes are legit? Quite simply, we don’t. However, according to Ballotpedia, Ohio has some of the most extensive election integrity infrastructure around, including “paper and DRE with paper trail.” That doesn’t mean Ohio’s elections are infallible.
The most important thing that needs to happen across the US to assure fair, free, and legitimate elections is federal voter ID. This alone would make it much more difficult for felons and non-citizens to vote. Secondly, there needs to be electronic, blockchain based “check ins” at polling stations that read your voting ID and give you a unique ballot with your voting ID digitally identifiable on it. This would be mandatory and assure that a person couldn’t vote more than once per voter ID. The voting itself should also be based on blockchain technology. A person would use a marker to color in the box for their candidate, have their ballot scanned by a voting machine that would read and tally their vote, tying it to their ID, and then submit the physical ballot to a ballot box to serve as a paper trail. The voting machines would be government owned and operated (absolutely no subcontracting, it is a national security risk) and standardized across the country. They would not be individually connected to the internet at polling places.
To count the votes, the machines and ballots would be brought to a central location in each state where they would be connected to the internet. A specialized application would then count and audit the votes tallied by the machines and confirm that each ID only voted once and that each ID is tied to a valid citizen. The application would finalize the process by tallying the votes together with each of the other machines, and each of the other locations if necessary for the election. Each tabulation location would be observed by federal, state, and bipartisan authorities. Vote counts would be visible online to allow the public to compare how many registered voters each county had and how many people actually voted.
There would be several ways to audit this system, starting with each individual’s vote: Each person would be issued a receipt by the voting machine at their polling place showing their voter information and who they voted for.
Recounts would be performed by first using the application to reset the tallies for the location and running all the ballots through the machines again and then tabulating the results in the application. That number would be compared to the paper votes.
It wouldn’t be a perfect system. It would still have its flaws and weaknesses. But it would, at minimum, eliminate the vast majority of voter fraud and make American elections the most secure in the world.
In conclusion, the Ohio election has been seen by critics and pundits as a referendum on Trump (while ignoring national record low unemployment, new jobs, GDP growth through the roof, peace on the horizon in Korea, and the destruction of ISIS). Regardless of who wins, this seat will be up for reelection in November – so it’s hard to accurately use it as litmus test for how the general population will vote.