Frank Moore For President 2008

Candidate of the Just Makes Sense Party. Vote for Frank Moore. He gets results!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Santa Cruz county write-in vote counting

Blue House wrote:
A woman from Santa Cruz called today to let us know that her husband, who has been working as an elections volunteer for the Santa Cruz County Clerk, was given a document meant to instruct them as to how to identify and count write-in votes in Santa Cruz County. He was surprised to see the instructions, which were new to him, that said that in order for a write-in vote for President to be counted, the names of the presidential and vice-presidential candidates must be written there. He had not seen this before, and believed it to be wrong. This is the document: He questioned the county registrar about this, and she told him that it came from the elections code. He looked up the code she referred him to, and did not see anything in it which would require this, so he kept on her about it ... When last he saw her, the day before the election, she had told him that she was going to look into what other counties are doing ... she could not explain where they had gotten this instruction from.

He and his wife both said that there were no notices to voters of this at the polls, nor in the election materials that were mailed to Santa Cruz county residents. Moreover, it turns out that it is not legally defensible under California elections law.

Richard Winger cited a court case from 1961 to back this up: Muir v. Steinberg 197C.A.2d264 . At the end of the ruling, on pg. 271, it refers to the intention of the voter being primary in counting write-in votes in California. He also said that this emphasis on the intention of the voter is true for most states. He has contacted the Secretary of State's office about this, but has not been called back. Richard said that for the following reasons, this requirement for counting write-in votes for President is in error ...

In the case of write-in voting for President, the voter is actually voting for a slate of Presidential electors pledged to a particular candidate. So if the voter writes-in the name of the Presidential candidate, but leaves out the name of the v.p., the intention is crystal clear: the voter wants those electors that are pledged to that candidate. The name of the v.p. is unimportant. Second, Richard said that in many California counties, the space allowed for writing-in is small enough to deter people from writing in the v.p. candidate's name in addition to the presidential candidate. And thirdly, there is the fact that Santa Cruz County has not required this before, and it does not appear to have originated as a mandate from the Secretary of State.

Richard gave me several numbers to try at the Secretary of State's office and Elections office, and I left three messages at lunch ... by the end of the day, there was a call back from the head of the Secretary of State's legal department, wanting the court case and citation number I referred to in my message. At that time, I didn't have a number to cite. Richard looked it up for me, and I called back this afternoon and left a second message with that information!

Frank Moore wrote:
and we thought our work was over! FOLLOW IT UP!


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